5 Tips To Improve Digestion On A Vegan Diet
In this article I want to share 5 Tips for Improving Digestion On A Vegan Diet. Many people experience better digestion when they start to include more plant-based foods! However for some, these dietary changes can have the opposite effect and lead to bloating, slow digestion, constipation, and other digestive issues. This article will shed some light on common causes of these symptoms and provide advice on improving digestion so you can THRIVE on your plant-based diet!
#1 Avoid Refined Sugar & Oil
First off, you’ll want to reduce or avoid refined sugar, oil, and
products containing them. These can cause inflammation in the digestive tract and disrupt hormones that affect hunger and satiety. As we’ll discuss soon, to improve digestion we need to reduce unnecessary eating that can clog our “pipes” and led to bloating, gas, and constipation. Refined foods, especially sugar and flours, can spike and crash blood sugar leading to cravings, hunger, and unnecessary eating.
Here are some examples of refined foods you should avoid: Refined sugar, flour, oils and foods that are made from them. E.g. donuts, crackers, cookies, muffins, French fries, pizza, burgers, potato chips, candy, soda, jams, jellies, ice cream, olive oil, vegetable oil, coconut oil, cooking sprays.
#2 Make Nutrient-Rich & Macro-Balanced Meals
One of the best things you can do for better digestion is
to make meals that are nutrient-rich and macro-balanced. Every single cell in our body needs vitamins and minerals to function and deficiency can affect your digestive system’s ability to break down and absorb food. Macro-balance is a term I created that means having a balance between carbohydrates, fat, and protein in meals. This makes meals energizing and satiating for 3-5 hours after eating, reducing unnecessary eating/snacking that can mess with digestion. A detailed list of nutrient-rich foods, the Top 24 Healthiest Plant Foods, can be found in our Free Starter Guide at the top of this page.
The Microvore Meal Formula shown here can guide you through making macro-balanced meals.
#3 Drink Plenty of Water In Between Meals
Staying hydrated will allow the fiber in your plant foods to
become soft and slippery and pass through your digestive system with much less fuss! Once again, reducing unnecessary eating can help with digestive issues, and often thirst is mistaken for hunger and quickly disappears with a few glasses of water! Adding acidic lemon juice or apple cider vinegar to water can also help your system break down food and keep things flowing!
#4 Take A Probiotic Pill & Eat Prebiotic Foods
The friendly bacteria that live in our gut play an important role
in breaking down the fiber in our food. Taking a probiotic supplement can add beneficial bacteria to your gut, as well as eating fermented foods like vegan yoghurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, and more!
#5 Move Around Often
The intestines are muscles just like the ones in your arms and
legs! Walking, stretching and doing light activities after meals helps to move food along and prevent constipation and bloating. Weight lifting and cardio can strengthen the digestive muscles to better handle regular eating.
If you have implemented these tips and still find yourself
struggling with excessive gas, constipation, and other digestive issues, you may be experiencing food sensitivities. Try simplifying the variety of food in meals and experiment with removing foods you think may be causing issues. Consult with your doctor to find out if there are any underling medical issues that need to be addressed.
While it can take some time and patience to get your digestion on track, these simple tips can help ease the transition towards looking and feeling your best on your plant-based diet!
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Thanks for living vegan and have a healthy day!