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You May Not Know These 8 Foods Are Harming Your Digestion

You May Not Know These 8 Foods Are Harming Your Digestion

When you find yourself battling digestion issues, the first thing to evaluate is your diet. Many times, a simple adjustment in food intake can help regulate your digestion without adding synthetic medications to your daily routine. Review the following list of foods to see if what you’re eating might be harming your digestion.

1. Frozen Dinners

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    Any time there is a high concentration of fat and salt but low fiber content, such as in frozen dinners and preserved meals, you’re more likely to experience digestion difficulties. According to the Mayo Clinic, adults should ingest approximately 25-38 grams of fiber daily. Diets that primarily include heat-and-eat frozen meals can lead to digestion problems, as the nutrient content compared to fresh foods is low.

    2. Dairy Products

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      Of all food groups, dairy is perhaps the least conspicuous when it comes to fat. After all, dairy products have healthy aspects also, like the healthy bacteria found in yogurt or the calcium content of milk. Unfortunately, the fat found in most dairy products can negatively impact digestion. A 2013 study published in the Annals of Translational Medicine explored the relationship between a high fat diet and digestive health. Researchers found that individuals with high fat diets experienced digestive disturbances more frequently than those on a balanced diet.

      3. Chocolate

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        Despite it being one of the most prized foods in the world, chocolate is blamed for causing digestive problems in individuals. Along with black tea and bananas, chocolate is believed to hamper proper digestion and cause intestinal discomfort, according to a 2005 study published in European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Particularly for individuals prone to irritable bowel syndrome or other digestive disturbances, consuming chocolate is not recommended.

        4. Salty Snacks

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          Like processed foods, salty snacks can sap your body’s ability to remain adequately hydrated, particularly if you’re not consuming enough water throughout the day. When not balanced with plenty of fluids, chips, nuts, and salty crackers can inhibit maintenance of internal sodium levels, affecting your digestive system’s ability to efficiently process food. According to a 2003 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, even mild dehydration can impact digestive health. Offset the negative digestive effects of salty foods by drinking at least 64oz of water daily.

          5. Sweets

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            Whether you’re a fan of cookies, cakes, or pies, sweets can compromise your body’s ability to digest foods properly. The reason is threefold; sweets usually have high carbohydrate counts, low fiber, and a high fat content. Combined, these attributes can result in irregular bowel movements and digestive discomfort, according to the National Institute on Aging.

            6. Unripened Bananas

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            Bananas

              Bananas are packed with nutrients, portable, and affordable, making them one of the most consumed fruits in the world. Unfortunately, failing to have patience during the ripening process can lead to severe digestive health issues. According to the Digestive Health Institute, unripened bananas contain resistant starch, which impairs the digestive process. Avoid harming your digestion by waiting until bananas are yellow with hints of brown on the skin.

              7. Fatty Red Meat

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                Overeating any food can be detrimental to your health, but eating fatty red meat in abundance can lead to serious digestive problems. Specifically, the fat content in red meat, when disproportionate to fiber intake, can slow digestion and lead to intestinal discomfort. Because red meat is generally thick and sinew, proper digestion takes longer to occur, potentially impacting regularity according to Harvard Medical School.

                8. White Bread and Pasta

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                tofu-alfredo-with-vegan-meatballs-and-garlic-bread

                  Eating white bread and pasta may not affect digestion right away, but the relative lack of fiber in each can impact your digestive health. According to Harvard School of Public Health, substituting pasta and white bread with whole grain bread and pasta increases intake of dietary fiber, which is proven to enhance digestion.

                  Eat Healthy to Avoid Digestive Problems

                  To keep your digestive system in tip top shape, drink water, eat fresh foods, and limit intake of sugar and fat. But, don’t feel like you can’t enjoy food! Eat what you like in moderation while balancing your diet with high fiber, nutrient-rich foods.

                  Featured photo credit: Soulful Spoon via soulfulspoon.com

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                  Last Updated on March 13, 2019

                  How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

                  How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

                  Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

                  You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

                  Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

                  1. Work on the small tasks.

                  When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

                  Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

                  2. Take a break from your work desk.

                  Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

                  Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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                  3. Upgrade yourself

                  Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

                  The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

                  4. Talk to a friend.

                  Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

                  Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

                  5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

                  If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

                  Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

                  Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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                  6. Paint a vision to work towards.

                  If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

                  Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

                  Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

                  7. Read a book (or blog).

                  The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

                  Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

                  Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

                  8. Have a quick nap.

                  If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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                  9. Remember why you are doing this.

                  Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

                  What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

                  10. Find some competition.

                  Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

                  Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

                  11. Go exercise.

                  Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

                  Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

                  As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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                  Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

                  12. Take a good break.

                  Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

                  Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

                  Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

                  Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

                  More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

                  Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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