The digestive system is a complex yet essential component of your overall health. If something is wrong in the gut, it can seriously affect other bodywide systems, including neurological and cognitive functions, muscles strength and bone density. If you suspect you have digestive health problems, there are natural solutions you can try to restore gut health and become regular again.
About Digestive Issues
In a properly functioning digestive system, food gets passed from the mouth and excreted out the anus. Food passes through the stomach and the small and large intestines via the digestive tract’s natural, wave-like muscle contractions—peristalsis. Digestive enzymes in the stomach help to break up food, effectively releasing nutrients to be absorbed through the intestines. Leftover substances that don’t get absorbed are excreted as waste.1
Many people today are experiencing digestive health issues when any of these steps in the digestive process gets compromised. It’s possible to ignore symptoms or confuse them with other conditions, as the digestive tract is central to some many other functions in the body.
Everyone develops common digestive issues from time to time, such as constipation, diarrhea, bloating and gas. However, it’s possible to have an underlying digestive problem that is more chronic and could be affecting your overall health. Some common digestive conditions include:1
- Crohn’s disease
- Celiac disease
- Inflammatory bowel disease
In addition to these, there are potentially dozens of possible underlying factors contributing to poor digestive health or food sensitivities. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, 60-70 million Americans live with some sort of digestive disease.2
As roughly one-third of these cases require hospitalization, it’s critical for people to monitor their symptoms. Severe symptoms can become life-threatening if not cared for. Digestive health symptoms to watch for include:3
- Chronic constipation
- Frequent diarrhea
- Anemia (low iron)
- Unexplained weight loss
- Blood in stool or black, tarry stools
- Persistent abdominal pain
It’s important to know that all digestive conditions are preventable and manageable. But it can be difficult to identify the source of the problem. Carefully monitoring your symptoms and documenting your eating habits can help you identify the underlying cause and apply the right treatments.
Top Natural Solutions for Digestive Health
If you’re looking to improve your wellbeing, try these natural solutions for digestive health:
Probiotics - Probiotics are “good bacteria” that help create balance in your gut and prevent an overgrowth of harmful bacteria.
Aloe Vera - Aloe vera has natural anti-inflammatory health benefits for reducing bowel irritation. It’s also a natural laxative for treating constipation.
Papaya - Papaya contains digestive enzymes that help reduce inflammation, detox the digestive tract and promote regular bowel movements.
Anise Seeds - Anise seeds can help alleviate uncomfortable digestive issues like bloating, cramping and gas. They can also be taken prior to meals to help promote healthy digestion and even to stimulate appetite.
Ginger - Ginger helps ease nausea and upset stomach, but it also helps to stimulate appetite and promote digestive regularity.