Moms always used to say, "Chew your food 32 times before you swallow." Remember how you used to roll your eyes? Well, guess what? Mom was right—at least in saying you should eat slowly, and chew more carefully for a longer time.
What are good eating practices good for?
• Chewing well is a part of healthy digestion.
• Put your troubles to the side, and try to be in a calm state of mind while you eat. Eating in a peaceful atmosphere contributes to good digestion. If you are accustomed to having a glass of wine with your meal, this, too will help digestion.
• Chewing food into smaller pieces makes it easier to swallow the food
• It gives the food longer exposure to digestive enzymes in your saliva, which in turns breaks the food down better for digestion.
• When your food has higher amounts of saliva, it slides through your stomach, and into your intestine more easily.
• Chewing slowly can help keep you from overeating.
• Careful chewing will help keep your teeth and gums healthy.
What happens if you don't follow good eating practices?
• You are helping develop bacterial overgrowth, which is a cause of flatulence, heartburn, IBS, and abdominal spasms.
• You may be aggravating muscle pain, headaches, asthma, and allergies, and skin rashes.
• You might be setting yourself up for constipation.
• You won't get the full value of the nutrients you are ingesting.
How to help your digestive system
• Cut your food into small pieces.
• Don't cram your mouth full. Chew a little at a time.
• Chew until what you have in your mouth seems liquefied. This will take time to get there, and you'll feel strange doing it at first.
• If you do not have time to sit and chew carefully, consider a liquid replacement such as a protein shake made with whey powder.
Start today. The sooner you master the challenge of a peaceful, calm, well-digested meal, the sooner you will feel a lot better.
Glenn will be at The Gathering, a group of local merchants, in Ocala on Saturday, February 27, 2010. Make plans now to attend the gathering, and chat with Glenn about your own personal fitness program. Click on the poster to see it better.