Stress & its consequences on the digestive system: unseen but often felt

The everyday demands of life and career are inevitable, but may often times impede on one’s well-being. A typical day becomes full of unexpected stimuli and continually puts our ability to adapt to the test. Indeed, one must learn to balance a level of calm with this chaos.

Our digestive system, like everything else in nature, follows very specific patterns in order to carry out its functions. Secretions, mixing, and peristaltic movements (which move contents onwards) are normally well coordinated by what is truly our “second brain” (the enteric nervous system) located along the length of the entire digestive tract.

When our intestines are subjected to stresses such as improper food choices, and/or high or maintained levels of stress, our digestive system may lose its balance and its regularity. In such cases, it is often useful to provide yourself with a bit of tranquility and your G.I. tract will easily recover its normal functions. It is imparative to remember that we almost always have the freedom to decide when, how and what to eat and making the right choices during difficult times can make all the difference.

In addition, natural substances are a useful tool for making a rapid recovery from the occasional loss of bowel regularity. For example, plants such as psyllium and glucomannan contain highly functional fiber (for example, with great capacity to retain liquid in the intestinal lumen), and others, such as those derived from corn, are particularly suited to those who have delicate and/or sensitive intestines, thanks their useful prebiotic effects.

Although not a shortcut around adequate fiber intake, supplementation is very helpful, especially during periods in which the irregularities of our lives affects the desired regularity of our intestines.

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