Herbal Teas for Digestive Health
Without healthy digestive function, it is very difficult to beginand maintain a healthy and balanced herbal weight- loss program. Physical discomfort and poor digestive function will result in dietary extremes of excessive food intake or erratic meal schedules.
This section will be especially useful for individuals who suffer from any one of the many physical conditions that might be classified as a digestive disorder. By using a combination of the herbal, nutritional, and homeopathic suggestions that are listed, you may well be able to normalize your digestive function and apply the herbal weight-loss program most effectively.
Digestion is the process that food undergoes beginning in the mouth and ending with the elimination of waste materials through the anus. What happens in between these two functions is an amazing array of steps that enables the body to absorb and utilize essential nutrients that nourish the body and eliminate various liquid, solid, and gaseous waste products. In general, we say that digestion begins with chewing. Chewing breaks food into
smaller pieces, and saliva breaks down complex carbohydrates and starches. Chewed food passes from the mouth down through the esophagus. Different parts of this long tube perform different functions. Branching off from it are various organs and glands that contribute to digestion, including the pancreas, the liver, and the gallbladder. When any of the many mechanical or chemical processes involved in digestion are stressed or break down, you will experience one or more of the many different symptoms that indicate a digestive disorder including obesity.
Symptoms of Digestive Disorders
Also known as gastrointestinal disorders, digestive problems are often associated with obesity. They begin to make themselves known through symptoms such as cramping, burning, growling, pain, churning, and bloating.
When such symptoms return frequently or become worse, it’s time to consult a competent herbalist or other health professional.
You should also consult a professional if you:
• Have difficulty swallowing
• Find blood in your vomit
• Find mucus or pus in your stools
• Experience inexplicable, recurring pain lasting six hours or more accompanied by fever, chills, and shaking
• Experience bowel movement changes, e.g., a sudden change from diarrhea to constipation, or an extreme change in the color of the stool
• Notice a yellowing of the skin and eyes that’s not associated with normal beta-carotene supplementation or drinking carrot juice (This is a symptom of jaundice.)
• Notice a dark coloring of the urine that is not associated with a high intake of B vitamins
• Have an unexplained fever of over 101 degrees for two days or more
The most common causes of digestive disorders are:
• Eating too rapidly and not chewing food sufficiently
• Nutritional deficiencies, especially those resulting from ingesting large amounts of refined carbohydrates and other processed foods
• Using coffee, caffeinated tea, alcohol, and tobacco products
• Low levels of hydrochloric acid (possibly the result of a niacin deficiency)
• Very spicy foods
Four Signs That Your Digestion Is in Balance
1. At the end of the day you have a sense of emotional gratification without feeling exhausted
2. You wake up feeling rested after a full night’s sleep
3. You have full, easy bowel movements
4. You are able to easily digest your food