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  #1   ravusaab is offline
12-27-2008, 04:20 AM
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Take care your digestive system


Take care your digestive system

The digestive system is made up of the digestive tract—a series of hollow organs joined in a long, twisting tube from the mouth to the anus—and other organs that help the body break down and absorb food


When you eat foods—such as bread, meat, and vegetables—they are not in a form that the body can use as nourishment. Food and drink must be changed into smaller molecules of nutrients before they can be absorbed into the blood and carried to cells throughout the body. Digestion is the process by which food and drink are broken down into their smallest parts so the body can use them to build and nourish cells and to provide energy.


Digestion involves mixing food with digestive juices, moving it through the digestive tract, and breaking down large molecules of food into smaller molecules. Digestion begins in the mouth, when you chew and swallow, and is completed in the small intestine.




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FACTORS THAT AFFECT THE DIGESTION

A. The specific food vs. digestion time: Carbohydrates (fruits, cereals) require the least amount of time to digest; proteins (legumes) is second, and last of all, requiring the most time to digest are the lipids (nuts, nut butters). A mixture of two or three (beans and rice) requires even more time to digest.

B. Method of food preparation: Fried food or foods containing high amounts of oils or hardened fats, require more time to digest. A cereal cooked very well is easier to digest than one that is partially cooked.


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C. Some eating customs and certain foods affect the digestion:

1. Tea, coffee, spices and other condiments, and very concentrated sweets are stimulating and irritating to the digestion.

2. Ripened cheese, vinegar, pickled food, and large quantities of fat slow down the digestion.

3. Some combinations of food may cause digestive problems:

a. Milk and sugar, or milk, eggs, and sugar: "Far too much sugar is ordinarily used in food. Cakes, sweet puddings, pastries, jellies, jams are active causes of indigestion. Especially harmful are the custards in which milk, eggs, and sugar are the chief ingredients."

b. Fruits eaten with vegetables may harm persons with a weak digestion: "It is not well to eat fruit and vegetables at the same meal. If the digestion is feeble, the use of both will often cause distress and inability to put forth mental effort. It is better to have fruit at one meal and the vegetables at another."

c. A great variety at one meal causes indigestion: "There should not be a great variety at any one meal, for this encourages overeating and causes indigestion."


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4. Too much water or juice taken with the meals will dilute the digestive juices, and slow digestion: "Food should not be washed down. Taken with meals, water diminishes the flow of saliva; and the colder the water, the greater the injury to the stomach...The more liquid there is taken into the stomach with the meals, the more difficult it is for the food to digest; for the liquid must first be absorbed."

"If anything is needed to quench the thirst, pure water, drunk some little time before or after the meal, is all that nature requires. Never take tea, coffee, beer, wine, or any spirituous liquids. Water is the best liquid possible to cleanse the tissues."

5. Very hot (or cold) food and drinks slow down and weaken the digestive system. "The stomach is greatly infured by a large quantity of hot food and hot drink. Thus the throat and digestive organs, and through them the other organs of the body are enfeebled." "Food should not be eaten very hot or very cold. If the food is cold, the vital force of the stomach is drawn upon in order to warm it before digestion can take place. Cold drinks are injurious for the same reason; while the free use of hot drinks is debilitation."

6. "Bathing or exercising vigorously, and intense study before or after eating attract the blood to the surface of the body or to the brain, thus removing it from the digestive organs, and slow down the digestion."

7. Anxiety: "At mealtime cast off care and anxious thought; do not feel hurried, but eat slowly and with cheerfulness...When one is excited, anxious, or hurried, it is better not to eat until rest or relief is found."


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D. GOOD HABITS THAT IMPROVE THE DIGESTION

1. MEALS SHOULD BE EATEN IN THE RIGHT ORDER: Breakfast, the first meal should be the most important; Lunch should be less important, and supper, if eaten should be light.

2. HOW MUCH TIME BETWEEN MEALS: "After disposing of one meal, the digestive organs need rest. At least five or six hours should intervene between meals...."

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3. TAKE TIME TO EAT: Eating too quickly takes away vital power and slows down the digestion. Remember to chew thoroughly.

4. DON'T OVEREAT!: Exercise temperance and moderation even when eating healthful foods. Don't let you appetite guide you. Overloading the stomach disturbs its smooth function. Overeating can also cause you to gain weight. Remember: eat to live, not live to eat.

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5. REGULARITY AND SNACKS: Irregular and frequent demands on the digestive organs, interrupts their function, uses up vital energy, and destroys the normal healthy appetite. "After the regular meal is eaten, the stomach should be allowed to rest.... Not a particle of food should be introduced into the stomach till the next meal. In this interval, the stomach will preform its work, and will then be in a condition to receive more food."

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E. MAINTAIN HEALTHY INTESTINAL FLORA: There are 3 kinds of bacteria and one fungus that normally inhabit our intestines. These help digest the food and make some of the "B" vitamins that our body needs. The balance can be disturbed by use of antibiotics, stress or poor diet. They can be kept in balance by taking Acidophilus and Bifidus when antibiotics are used or during periods of stress.

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