Yesterday I ate horrible. I’m almost embarrassed to admit how horrible I ate yesterday, but I think it’s a good lesson for everyone. And when I say I ate horrible, I MEAN HORRIBLE. Think everything I’m not supposed to eat- gluten, dairy, processed foods/sugars….and that’s literally all I ate. The only vegetables I ate yesterday was some broccoli on chicken broccoli Alfredo pizza.
Today I’m paying for it. My stomach is SCREAMING at me….that is, if it could talk. The sharp, stabbing gas pain …the nausea…constipation. Ugh. I feel miserable. Not a pretty picture I know, but hey, I never promised pretty.
So why am I telling you all this? Because it’s important. The truth is, no one is perfect.. or eats perfect 100% of the time. And to be quite honest, this journey to eating a clean diet 100% of the time is new for me. So I believe it’s helpful to know ways that you can nurture yourself (and your stomach) when you’ve eaten like crud.
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Without further ado, here’s five ways you can take care of those tummy woes when you’ve overindulged:
- Let your stomach rest- This might seem a little obvious, but if you’re anything like me, this might be a little easier said then done. It’s easier then you think to try to “power through” tummy troubles and continue my day as normal. Not a great idea. Truth is, your stomach needs time to digest! Digestion itself is actually something that can take days to be complete…yes, you read that right, DAYS. It’s estimated to take roughly six to eight hours for food to pass from your stomach to your large intestine (colon). So if you are rushing a big ole breakfast following a night of over-indulging…you are throwing gasoline on a fire. Choose foods that are healthy, but also easier to digest such as applesauce, oatmeal, a smoothie with some protein powder (my favorite protein powder can be found here).
- Move around- this might feel counter-intuitive but you do need to move in order to keep your digestion going….and trust me, you need to keep digestion moving. I’m not saying go run a marathon, but don’t lie in bed all day either. Now this is different if you are suffering from a viral bug- of course you would want to try to rest it off and allow your body time to do that. But I’m talking if you just hit the pizza and ice cream too hard the night before, keep it moving (lightly) honey. Do some light exercise like yoga (I did this one this morning), or take a light walk. With this said, of course if you feel like your body is screaming “REST!” then listen to it…just don’t intentionally lay in bed all day if your body isn’t truly needing that time to recover.
- Take a hot shower and/or use an ice pack- my kids have picked up on my solution that a hot shower heals everything- pain, anxiety, a broken heart, and body odor. I love hot showers, so I’m probably biased here I’ll admit, but I honestly feel like a hot shower is the solution for just about everything. I would probably live in the shower if I could. Okay okay, enough about my love of them. But for tummy troubles, there is something to taking a hot shower. It can help to relax stomach muscles and to stimulate nerve endings which help ease pain, therefore relieve stomach pain. The ice on the other hand can come in handy if you are experiencing a lot of pain in your lower esophageal sphincter by reducing inflammation and numbing some of those pain receptors.
- Probiotics and digestive enzymes- These can help to further support your digestion and help your body break down some of the cellular structures of harder to digest foods like dairy or gluten. I do take a probiotic daily, but the digestive enzymes I take “as needed” when I feel like I’m having a hard time digesting something I’ve eaten. Pure Encapsulations is a brand I trust and one I personally take, however you can find digestive enzymes at your local food cooperative by the supplements as most carry them. Find what I take with this link
- Ginger, peppermint, and fennel- “Eaters Digest” tea is one of my all time favorite favorite (and did I mention favorite?) teas! Traditional Medicinal’s is one of my personal “go-to’s” as far as tea brands are concerned- and this one in particular has been a tummy saver (especially today as I’ve been sipping it all day). Of course, you don’t have to drink this tea specifically, you can find all three ingredients separately and consume them in your own way. I just find the tea is a nice (and tasty) way to nurture my stomach when it is upset. You can purchase the tea here using this link or you can find this brand at Target, Walmart, and most grocery stores/food coops.
And that’s it….that’s what I’m doing today to take care of myself after a day of rough choices. Moving forward I hope to use this as a reminder of why I am on the path to eat clean. Lesson learned!
Until next time,
Do you have any tips for easing an upset stomach? Comment below!