Optimal Digestion for Thanksgiving

Optimal Digestion for Thanksgiving

Optimal Digestion for Thanksgiving Dinner 

Thanksgiving is arguably the best holiday- the chance to feast on all your favorite foods and gather with friends and family. What more could you ask for!

Yet, what about the couple of hours after the feast when you feel unbelievably full and uncomfortably bloated. Want to know how to skip that part of the day? Keep reading to find out how to have your pie and eat it too.

The first step starts long before the meal. Digestion preparation may be the saving grace of your rumbling stomach later. First things first, eat your breakfast. You may be more inclined to skip breakfast to save room for later, however this can actually have the opposite effect. Eating a very large meal on a fasted stomach can increase bloating and gas exponentially. So instead have a fiber filled breakfast such as oatmeal with berries plus chia seeds or whole grain toast with avocado and eggs. Keep it simple, keep it light - but nonetheless eat your breakfast.

Enzymatic Eating 

Another key component of digestion preparation is supporting your digestive system with the use of enzymes. Digestive enzymes are the naturally occurring enzymes in your body that help you to break down and absorb nutrients from your food. It is recommended to take digestive enzymes 15-30 minutes prior to the meal for optimal functioning.

Next up let’s build this thanksgiving meal. When you view your plate approximately half of the plate should be fruits, vegetables and high fiber foods. The other half will be split evenly between carbohydrate foods such as rolls, mashed potatoes and so on. The other quarter of the plate will be for protein foods such as turkey, legumes or ham.

Fast & Furious Feasting 

This is where it may get tricky because when you have a buffet of all your favorite foods; how do you not pile every option onto your plate? Try to remember that you do not have to eat all of your favorite foods in this one meal. There will be seconds in a couple hours or even the next day and I assure you that your digestive system will thank you for it.

Now let’s chow down. We have a balanced plate in front of us, and now the challenge is to take our time. Slow down and really enjoy this meal. Eating too fast is another way to quickly upset your stomach after the meal. So pace yourself and chew your food thoroughly. Take some time to talk to friends and family during this time; gathering around the table with loved ones is what Thanksgiving is all about right? 

Keep it moving and grooving!

Phew what a delicious meal that was! Let’s make this content feeling last by helping our digestion even more. Ginger is the key! Ginger encourages efficient digestion and gets everything moving so that large meal you just ate does not stick around in the gut. Try to have ginger lemon tea or ginger chews after the meal. 

Finally, stay moving my friends. I know all we want to do after a large meal is curl up on the couch and take a nap. However, your body is best at digesting foods when in the upright position. So to eliminate any of the uncomfortable fullness, gas, or bloating aim to stay moving at least two hours after the Thanksgiving meal.

All in all, try out these tips this holiday season so that you may focus on family, friends, and good food instead of your rumbly tummy.