Eaten too much over the festive period? Us too! But what is the festive season without delicious food shared with family and friends? So, don’t be too hard on yourself but don't cut calories, skip meals, or go on a very low calorie fast or detox plan in an attempt to undo damage. Extreme diet “fixes” only set you up to slip up again. If you have over-indulged, we have come up with the top 10 things you should be eating post holidays to boost your digestive system.
1. Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is full of enzymes, antioxidants and pre-and-probiotics. It helps to improve digestion by stimulating stomach acid, assisting the breakdown of food and increasing the absorption of nutrients. Start your summer mornings with a dash of apple cider vinegar in water or put over a salad as a dressing, later in the day.
Bananas are a great source of digestive enzymes which help to stimulate the breakdown of food. They contain nutrients essential for liver health and most famously, are packed with potassium. Eating bananas will help to level out your blood pressure and can help to keep you hydrated.
3. Overnight oats, lemon-infused water and raw nuts.
If you ate too much cheese, chocolate, and ice-cream, make sure you start the morning with a glass of water with lemon, then having overnight oats with some raw nuts. Whole grain oats are packed with fibre which helps to support the health and motility of our digestive system. They are also full of nutrients like vitamin Bs to support the nervous system, vitamin C for antioxidant support and amino acids which will keep you fuller for longer. Soak oats overnight in water to ensure you break down the outer layer of the husk and enjoy as a bircher muesli.
4. Stone fruits
Peaches, plums and nectarines; the stone fruits are not just a sweet alternative, they are packed with nutrients such as vitamin C and potassium and are a great source of fibre. Simply adding them to your breakfast with oats and raw nuts can help your body to digest foods and regulate your energy levels throughout the day.
Eating too much fried food? Reset your system with Lettuce’s zestier cousin, rocket. This raw vegetable is bitter and mature making it a wonderful digestive stimulant. Rocket will also bring increased circulation to the stomach and as a nutrient dense vegetable, will help to provide your body with the nutrients it needs to function at its best.
Eggs are packed with proteins which help to balance out blood sugars and leave you feeling fuller for longer. Eggs are easily broken down in the body, so that your digestive system does not need to work hard at all to absorb the numerous nutrients.
Peppermint works directly on the digestive system to alleviate bloating, pain and flatulence. It can reduce nausea and headaches and may help to improve mental fatigue. Perfect if you are feeling a little tired from the holiday festivities.
Full of fibre, kiwifruit also contains enzymes which can breakdown protein in meat, fish and dairy, faster than our digestive system can on its own. Consuming kiwifruit can also promote bowel regularity and is packed with vitamin C and antioxidants, which will help to reduce free radical damage caused from too much indulgence.
Ginger helps to stimulate saliva and promotes the release of bile, enhancing the total activity of our gastrointestinal system. Anti-inflammatory in nature, ginger works directly on the digestive system to improve circulation and can help to reduce nausea and stomach pain. Drink fresh ginger as a tea, or grate and use as a seasoning.
Salmon is a great option if you are looking for something hearty and easy to digest. High in protein to keep you full and your blood sugar stable, salmon is also a great source of omega-3s which help to reduce inflammation.
So support your digestive system and choose the right foods. Continuing to look after your digestive system will provide your body with the support and energy it needs for a full, fun summer break.