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5 Drinks You Don’t Know Can Smooth Your Digestion A Lot

5 Drinks You Don’t Know Can Smooth Your Digestion A Lot

Almost all of us have, at one time or another, suffered from digestive problems. These may range from heartburn to diarrhea and indigestion to constipation. For many people, constipation and its dreaded bloated and full feeling are the worst.

One of the best way to avoid constipation is by eating a well-balanced diet that includes fiber and lots of liquids. But maybe you don’t have enough time in your busy day to eat the required servings of fruits and veggies. Maybe you forgot to drink enough water all week. Maybe you just want to buy a fast-acting laxative and be done with it.

But wait! Before you run to the pharmacy for a laxative, which could make the situation worse, try one of the following drinks. Don’t worry! You can easily prepare these or buy them already prepared. Just serve yourself, have a drink at the office, and reap the benefits while you work.

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1. Coffee or Tea

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    Image source

    Do you love the smell of coffee brewing? Do you have to have a cup in the morning to wake up? Or are you more of a tea person? It doesn’t matter, the caffeine in both drinks can help relieve your constipation. Caffeine is a natural digestive stimulant and diuretic. According to one study, it triggers contractions in your colon which help to move hardened waste through the duct.

    Warning: Caffeine may lead to diarrhea in some people. Too much caffeine may result in dehydration which could make constipation worse.

    2. Honey

    honey
      Image by Evren Gunturkun

      Not only is this sweet golden liquid perfect for a cup of tea or bowl of oatmeal, but it can also relieve constipation. The best way to benefit from its effects is by mixing a spoonful with a cup of warm water and drinking it about 30 minutes before eating. Some people claim a squirt of lemon juice increases its effectiveness. Research suggests that honey may be a laxative in some people due to the body’s inability to absorb all of its fructose.

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      Warning: Honey is a natural sugar and should be limited to 1 teaspoon a day, especially for people with diabetes as its consumption can result in increased blood sugar levels.

      3. Fat-Free Milk

      Drinking fat-free milk is another constipation-relieving option. While some research indicates that full fat milk may actually result in constipation, another study determined that fat-free milk has the opposite effect. Consuming fat-free milk increases two peptide hormones which work to stimulate the digestive tract.

      Warning: People with lactose intolerance should try one of the other constipation remedies on the list to avoid diarrhea.

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      4. Tomato Juice

      tomato-juice
        Image source

        Since a lack of dietary fiber is the leading cause of constipation, it’s important to increase fiber consumption. Try drinking tomato juice; it has one of the highest amounts of fiber when compared to any other fruit juice.

        5. Ginger

        ginger-1714196_1280
          Image source

          Ginger acts as a natural laxative and can stimulate bowel activity. Drinking ginger tea is the best way to benefit from its effects. Add about 2 teaspoons of ginger for every cup of hot water and have a cup 2 or 3 times daily.

          Warning: Ginger may affect the body’s response to medicine for diabetes and may adversely interact with blood-thinning medications as well. Consult a doctor before consume.

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          Additional Considerations

          These 5 drinks are only short-term recommendations. The best way to prevent and treat constipation is via diet, liquid intake, and exercise. Make sure to get the recommended daily serving of fiber: between 30 and 35 grams. Fiber intake needs to be done with increased liquid intake. Fiber is important because it dissolves in water and helps soften the body’s solid waste. When stool is soft, it is easier to pass which helps us avoid constipation. Exercise is also important because it helps to stimulate the digestive system.

          Featured photo credit: freepik via freepik.com

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          Amber Pariona

          EFL Teacher, Lifehack Writer, English/Spanish Translator, MPA

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          Last Updated on March 25, 2020

          How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

          How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

          When it comes to living long, genes aren’t everything. Research has revealed a number of simple lifestyle changes you can make that could help to extend your life, and some of them may surprise you.

          So, how to live longer? Here are 21 ways to help you live a long life

          1. Exercise

          It’s no secret that physical activity is good for you. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy body weight and lowers your blood pressure, both of which contribute to heart health and a reduced risk of heart disease–the top worldwide cause of death.

          2. Drink in Moderation

          I know you’re probably picturing a glass of red wine right now, but recent research suggests that indulging in one to three glasses of any type of alcohol every day may help to increase longevity.[1] Studies have found that heavy drinkers as well as abstainers seem to have a higher risk of early mortality than moderate drinkers.

          3. Reduce Stress in Your Life

          Stress causes your body to release a hormone called cortisol. At high levels, this hormone can increase blood pressure and cause storage of abdominal fat, both of which can lead to an increased risk of heart disease.

          4. Watch Less Television

          A 2008 study found that people who watch six hours of television per day will likely die an average of 4.8 years earlier than those who don’t.[2] It also found that, after the age of 25, every hour of television watched decreases life expectancy by 22 minutes.

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          Television promotes inactivity and disengagement from the world, both of which can shorten your lifespan.

          5. Eat Less Red Meat

          Red meat consumption is linked to an increased risk of heart disease and cancer.[3] Swapping out your steaks for healthy proteins, like fish, may help to increase longevity.

          If you can’t stand the idea of a steak-free life, reducing your consumption to less than two to three servings a week can still incur health benefits.

          6. Don’t Smoke

          This isn’t exactly a revelation. As you probably well know, smoking significantly increases your risk of cancer.

          7. Socialize

          Studies suggest that having social relationships promotes longevity.[4] Although scientists are unsure of the reasons behind this, they speculate that socializing leads to increased self esteem as well as peer pressure to maintain health.

          8. Eat Foods Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

          Omega-3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease[5] and perhaps even Alzheimer’s disease.[6] Salmon and walnuts are two of the best sources of Omega-3s.

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          9. Be Optimistic

          Studies suggest that optimists are at a lower risk for heart disease and, generally, live longer than pessimists.[7] Researchers speculate that optimists have a healthier approach to life in general–exercising more, socializing, and actively seeking out medical advice. Thus, their risk of early mortality is lower.

          10. Own a Pet

          Having a furry-friend leads to decreased stress, increased immunity, and a lessened risk of heart disease.[8] Depending on the type of pet, they can also motivate you to be more active.

          11. Drink Coffee

          Studies have found a link between coffee consumption and longer life.[9] Although the reasons for this aren’t entirely clear, coffee’s high levels of antioxidants may play a role. Remember, though, drowning your cup of joe in sugar and whipped cream could counter whatever health benefits it may hold.

          12. Eat Less

          Japan has the longest average lifespan in the world, and the longest lived of the Japanese–the natives of the Ryukyu Islands–stop eating when they’re 80% full. Limiting your calorie intake means lower overall stress on the body.

          13. Meditate

          Meditation leads to stress reduction and lowered blood pressure.[10] Research suggests that it could also increase the activity of an enzyme associated with longevity.[11]

          Taking as little as 15 minutes a day to find your zen can have significant health benefits, and may even extend your life.

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          How to meditate? Here’re 8 Meditation Techniques for Complete Beginners

          14. Maintain a Healthy Weight

          Being overweight puts stress on your cardiovascular system, increasing your risk of heart disease.[12] It may also increase the risk of cancer.[13] Maintaining a healthy weight is important for heart health and living a long and healthy life.

          15. Laugh Often

          Laughter reduces the levels of stress hormones, like cortisol, in your body. High levels of these hormones can weaken your immune system.

          16. Don’t Spend Too Much Time in the Sun

          Too much time in the sun can lead to an increased risk of skin cancer. However, sun exposure is an excellent way to increase levels of vitamin D, so soaking up a few rays–perhaps for around 15 minutes a day–can be healthy. The key is moderation.

          17. Cook Your Own Food

          When you eat at restaurants, you surrender control over your diet. Even salads tend to have a large number of additives, from sugar to saturated fats. Eating at home will enable you to monitor your food intake and ensure a healthy diet.

          Take a look at these 14 Healthy Easy Recipes for People on the Go and start to cook your own food.

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          18. Eat Mushrooms

          Mushrooms are a central ingredient in Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s GOMBS disease fighting diet. They boost the immune system and may even reduce the risk of cancer.[14]

          19. Floss

          Flossing helps to stave off gum disease, which is linked to an increased risk of cancer.[15]

          20. Eat Foods Rich in Antioxidants

          Antioxidants fight against the harmful effects of free-radicals, toxins which can cause cell damage and an increased risk of disease when they accumulate in the body. Berries, green tea and broccoli are three excellent sources of antioxidants.

          Find out more antiosidants-rich foods here: 13 Delicious Antioxidant Foods That Are Great for Your Health

          21. Have Sex

          Getting down and dirty two to three times a week can have significant health benefits. Sex burns calories, decreases stress, improves sleep, and may even protect against heart disease.[16] It’s an easy and effective way to get exercise–so love long and prosper!

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          Featured photo credit: Sweethearts/Patrick via flickr.com

          Reference

          [1] Wiley Online Library: Late‐Life Alcohol Consumption and 20‐Year Mortality
          [2] BMJ Journals: Television viewing time and reduced life expectancy: a life table analysis
          [3] Arch Intern Med.: Red Meat Consumption and Mortality
          [4] PLOS Medicine: Social Relationships and Mortality Risk: A Meta-analytic Review
          [5] JAMA: Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Women
          [6] NCBI: Effects of Omega‐3 Fatty Acids on Cognitive Function with Aging, Dementia, and Neurological Diseases: Summary
          [7] Mayo Clinic Proc: Prediction of all-cause mortality by the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory Optimism-Pessimism Scale scores: study of a college sample during a 40-year follow-up period.
          [8] Med Hypotheses.: Pet ownership protects against the risks and consequences of coronary heart disease.
          [9] The New England Journal of Medicine: Association of Coffee Drinking with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality
          [10] American Journal of Hypertension: Blood Pressure Response to Transcendental Meditation: A Meta-analysis
          [11] Science Direct: Intensive meditation training, immune cell telomerase activity, and psychological mediators
          [12] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
          [13] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
          [14] African Journal of Biotechnology: Anti-cancer effect of polysaccharides isolated from higher basidiomycetes mushrooms
          [15] Science Direct: Periodontal disease, tooth loss, and cancer risk in male health professionals: a prospective cohort study
          [16] AHA Journals: Sexual Activity and Cardiovascular Disease

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