Science has established that there is a definitive link between the brain and the gut, which is why the gut has been rightly named “the second brain”. Expressions such as “butterflies in my stomach” and “gut wrenching” are actually saying more than what we read on the surface. Whether one’s tummy is in knots over a speech or one lacks the guts to undertake something, the fact remains: We think and feel with our guts as much as we do with our brains. Isn’t it logical, then, that a strong and healthy gut will spawn a healthy body and strong mind? Research suggests that the gut micro-flora lining the intestines are much more than just “good” or “bad” bacteria, and that their most important function is to regulate the body’s immune response, especially when faced with stress. This is a two-way street: Psychology and psycho-social factors influence the physiological functioning of the gut, and a healthy strong gut can help one stay mentally agile and fit.
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Cleanse your digestive system this holiday season
For the best results, take it easy when doing a water fast. If this is not possible, you may want to consider a juice fast instead. Cleansing with food When looking to do a cleanse, only eat high quality foods rich in nutrients. Eat slower and smaller amounts. Avoid processed foods.
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Digestive health: 10 Tips for getting your digestive system back on track
Certain probiotics, mostly found in dairy products and some fortified cereals, can help to maintain the balance of “good” bacteria in the digestive tract. Try a daily helping of yogurt with probiotics, such as Activia. 2 Keep the fiber on deck Consistently eating the right amount of fiber can help promote bowel function. High-fiber foods such as fruit, vegetables and whole grains also help you feel full, which can help lower your chance of overeating throughout the day. Keeping a running tab on the fiber you consume can help give you more energy.
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The large intestine Once all the nutrients have been absorbed, the waste is moved into the large intestine, or bowel. Water is removed and the waste (faeces) is stored in the rectum. It can then be passed out of the body through the anus. Common problems in the digestive system Some common problems include: Colitis inflammation of the bowel Diverticulitis inflammation of pouches lining the small intestine Gastroenteritis an infection that causes vomiting and diarrhoea Heartburn when the contents of the stomach back up into the oesophagus Ulcer a hole in the mucous membrane lining the stomach or duodenum.
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