How Can I Improve My Digestive Health?
It’s easy to notice if your digestive health is “off” or poor. A bad day for your digestive system can mean interrupted or even missed work, school or other responsibilities. It can also cause embarrassment or stressful situations.
Having a healthy digestive system means taking responsibility for everything you introduce into your system via eating and drinking. The saying “you are what you eat” is especially relevant, and even teenagers and children can tell the difference in how they feel after a healthy meal versus an unhealthy one.
Good digestive health really does begin with paying attention to what triggers your symptoms. Food is part of our daily routine, so eating and drinking can be reflexive, whatever is near, convenient, cheap or fast becoming criteria over what is best for our health. Taking the time to plan and consider what you eat can improve how you feel, how you look, your energy levels and more.
Consider the following tips to improve your digestive health:
- Meal planning and meal preparation – Sunday is a popular day for meal planning and preparation. Many households complete grocery shopping on weekends, allowing for a bit of extra time not normally allotted during the week to decide what you will eat for each meal, when and if you will eat out and what needs to be prepared ahead of schedule. Meal planning is one of the best ways to not only save money, but to eat healthier, home-cooked meals that benefit your digestive health and your weight.
- Hydrate – You really do need to take stock of how much water you drink each day. Most people think they are drinking enough water, but it is probably not enough if you are also counting other beverages such as tea, coffee, juice and soda. There is no substitute for water. Ideally, you need to drink enough water each day for your urine to be clear, or at least pale yellow in color. If your urine is dark or discolored, please contact your Pacific Family Practice provider.
- Consider a physical and/or check-up – If you feel your digestive heath is lacking or if you have been experiencing issues such as diarrhea, vomiting, bloating or cramping, you should book an appointment with your provider. Your provider can determine if a referral to a gastroenterologist is needed or if treatment can be provided on-site.
- Probiotics – Certain foods and supplements contain higher amounts of probiotics that can help treat certain digestive conditions. You should consult with your provider if you believe that you could benefit from a probiotic-focused diet or supplements.
Pacific Family Practice is happy to work with patients experiencing common digestive issues. Walk-ins are welcome, but we do recommend booking an appointment when possible. You can request an appointment with our providers here.