Why your Digestion is Not as Good as it Should Be?

March 26, 2024
Minute Read

Having any digestive disturbance such as bloating, constipation, gas, abdominal cramps, or heartburn can make a person feel uncomfortable. 

Below you will find reasons why your digestion might not be as good as it should be: 

1. Not drinking enough water

Drinking water is needed for several processes in the body such as the production of saliva which helps in the digestion of fats and carbohydrates in the mouth, secretion of gastric juices in the stomach, absorption of nutrients and minerals in the small intestines and colon. And most importantly, water is needed to soften bowel movements and avoid constipation (Risk Factors for Constipation in Adults: A Cross-Sectional Study - PubMed (nih.gov)). 

To increase your water intake, you should focus on drinking water, infused water, or herbal teas throughout the day. Not to forget the hydrating foods that can be incorporated into your daily routine: all kinds of fruits and vegetables such as apples, pineapples, cucumbers, lettuce, bell peppers, broccoli, and brussels sprouts. Monitoring your urine color is important to know that you have drunk enough water; it should be pale yellow.

2. Eating when not hungry

Most people tend to eat without being hungry and this is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. Once you start paying attention to the timings of your meals, you will notice a big difference. You should be eating only when you feel hungry. 

In this case, this means that snacking and eating every 2-3 hours is not suitable for everyone.

Of course, if your main goal is to gain weight, then snacking is essential for you.

The key is to be aware of your hunger signals; you should be able to have control over what you eat by knowing when you are hungry but not extremely hungry (so that you don’t overeat). 

3. Low stomach acid

Stomach acid is needed for the digestion of protein and other nutrients and destruction of bad bacteria before entering the body. 

The “appetite hormone” called ghrelin controls the release of the stomach acid. This means that the presence of stomach acid is needed for the signaling of hunger to the brain. 

Opposite to what most people think, low stomach acid (hypochlorhydria) is more common than high stomach acid. 

You can naturally stimulate the production of stomach acid in many ways: by incorporating raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar to your daily routine before main meals (you can do that by mixing 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to half a cup of water) Also, taking digestive enzymes (containing betaine HcL) helps in increasing the production of stomach acid (Gastric Re-acidification with Betaine HCl in Healthy Volunteers with Rabeprazole-Induced Hypochlorhydria - PMC (nih.gov)). 

4. Eating the wrong kind of foods

If you are eating too much processed sugar and foods, you will be feeding the bad bacteria in the gut which will lead to decreased nutrient absorption (The Influence of Nutrition on Intestinal Permeability and the Microbiome in Health and Disease - PMC (nih.gov)). Nutrients, fatty acids, and vitamins present in foods are needed for many purposes: neurotransmitters production, hormone production, and stress management, etc. 

On top of that, your body will need many more nutrients to break down, absorb and detoxify junk foods. Apart from diet, other poor lifestyle factors such as stress and lack of exercise, you will eventually end up with poor digestion which can lead to other health concerns such as bloating, constipation, decreased energy, decreased immune system, sugar cravings, mood swings, unhealthy weight gain, etc. 

At Yutopia, we can help you identify what could possibly affect your digestion and how you can treat it!

Remember, It all starts with Yu!

Written by:

Joelle Wardeh, B.S.

Functional Nutritionist