The Effects of Stress on your Digestion

Become Aware of how you feel… You’re feelings have an immediate impact upon your physical body..

Today I would like to bring to your awareness to the importance of knowing how your body is feeling with the core message being “AWARE OF THE EFFECTS OF YOUR STRESS ON YOUR BODY”…especially the deep on-going stress where you feel your stomach muscles twisting into a knot, your head, neck and shoulders very tense or tight, your heart palpitating, your chest tightening, Indigestion and so on.

These symptoms over a prolonged period of time are not good and are telling you something needs to change. These symptoms are so often linked to a malfunctioning digestive system even though you may not have any specific digestive complaints such as abdominal pain, bloating, IBS, diarrhoea, constipation etc.

Stress creates so many untold problems in the body and I have spoken of the effects of stress many times before. The word stress gets bandied about so much these days it is either way over exaggerated or completely played down. No one knows your body than you, this is why I encourage you to listen to your body and become aware of the signs and symptoms when things are not right. The quicker you nip something in the bud the easier it is to treat and it prevents more longterm serious illnesses from developing.

Stress is managed by our nervous systems and endocrine system and therefore can impact any and every part of the body. The digestive system being one of the most obvious and directly impacted and the area we are now going to look at a little deeper.

Stress is the number one cause of acid in the gut… this is different from the hydrochloric acid produced by the stomach.  A strong healthy PH acid alkaline balance through-out the entire digestive system is required for good health. When the acid levels are increased your digestive system becomes a fantastic host for all kinds of nasties…parasites, fungi/Candida, bacteria e.g. helicobacter pylori and many more. When you have all of these ingredients mixed together you have a digestive system in need of a good clear out and rebalancing. You may experience issues with food intolerances, sleep, skin issues, headaches, weight problems, anxiety, stress etc and you most likely would not connect it to an imbalance of your gut/digestive system.

Increased acid + poorly digested food + the heat of  your digestive system + toxic matter + moisture in digestive tract + a diet high in Sugar = A SLUGGISH, STINKING SEWER!!! Your body is designed to take in food for nourishment so its core function is ABSORPTION.The nourishment has to get INTO the cells for the body to keep functioning at its optimum.

If there is an overload of toxic matter going in or unable to get out efficiently you are basically reabsorbing toxic waste. In many cases it backs right up into your mouth creating foul smelling breath. Bloating, weight gain, constipation, irritable bowel, abdominal cramps, headaches, heartburn, indigestion, gas and so on overtime can become the norm.

There is plenty you can do to assist your digestive system back into good health…Most importantly you need to start by making changes

  1. Cutting out acid forming foods as much as possible or eliminate altogether..excess dairy , sugar, alcohol, red meat, under ripe fruit, dried fruit.The key word here is excess…and its all about balancing the food correctly. Example, you could have a delicious piece of grass fed beef with a big leafy green salad which is rich in enzymes to help you digest the meat and is high in alkaline properties to balance out any excess acid from the meat. There is little point in eating lots of meat, grass fed or not if you are not digesting it, cut it back for a while , give the body a break to encourage the system to heal and repair.
  2. Chew your food thoroughly. This is ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL. The reasons are obvious aren’t they? Your stomach has no teeth, even the healthiest of food which is indigestible will burden and stress your body!
  3. Drink plenty of water throughout the day…start by increasing slowly. Never drink more than a few mouthfuls at meal times as you are washing away the very digestive juices you need to breakdown and process what you are eating. Keeping the body well hydrated can massively improve your tolerance levels of stress and it helps every part of your body to work smoothly.
  4. Increase your intake of vegetables as they are more alkaline especially the leafy greens, cabbage, kale, spinach, pak choi/bok choy ( chinese cabbage) , lettuce, green herbs…parsley, chives, peppermint, coriander and so on. Add some super greens to your diet e.g chlorella, wheatgrass ( I supply freshly frozen wheatgrass shots for my clients, The benefits from one shot a day is amazing, It helps keep you alkaline, helps clean the blood and boosts your immunity among many other things (Read more about wheatgrass here ) If you need to order some just give me a shout Please note they are frozen so they need to be collected.
  5. Keep positive, reduce your stress load as much as possible… if this is something you find difficult to do I encourage you to take just one positive health affirmation daily from ‘My Pick yourself Up Book” and set a clear intention for the day to help keep you on track. Stress is a natural and ongoing part of life, if you cannot change something can you change your reactions to things which are going on in your life and outside of your control. If you are stressed you are not digesting and overtime you will get run down and unwell because of it.You can get your very own copy of my pick yourself up book here 
  6. Daily get as much fresh air as possible. Practice deep belly breathing to help you recenter and refocus. Breathing is your first armour in getting the nervous system and therefore your digestive system to relax.
  7. Be mindful and present while you are eating. Avoid multi tasking, eating on the go, standing up, cleaning, typing etc while you eat. Savour every mouthful and once again chew chew chew!!!
  8. Have a serious look at your lifestyle and stress and see what changes you can make to help yourself to manage it better or reduce it. Ask for help and support if you need to. There is no point in being a sick martyr, life is just way too short for that!
  9. Ensure you are getting sufficient sleep. Sleep is so important for helping the body to heal and repair You make digestive enzymes and many other metabolic processes occur while you sleep, which are essential for a happy healthy body. Lack of sleep means these processes become impaired.
  10. Avoid bending over or any heavy lifting, even lifting of small children during or just after eating can contribute to hernias and all kinds of abdominal discomfort. Always sit up straight while eating…gravity knows what to do!

None of what you have read above is rocket science, none of it is new I’m sure!!! However are you actually applying and implementing and living your daily life with the top 10 tips above? Most say NO.

Make a decision today to put your health first. Until you do you will keep putting yourself last and disregarding the stress and turmoil your body is under. It needs you to listen and take action.

GET MY HEALTHY YOU STEPS TODAY ( Inspiration, recipes, steps to improve digestion and lots more) by clicking here

During my one to one sessions I can go much deeper and see what else is going on….If you need help with any of the above contact me and we can zip to the core of the issue without delay.

Thanks for reading and I would love to hear your comments below as to what works for you and what does not, what do you struggle with most when it comes to your daily digestion and eating habits? let me know,

Gertrude x