by Judith G. Cobb, MH, CI, NCP
This article is not meant to diagnose or prescribe gut problems. It is meant for educational purposes only. Judith Cobb, Cobblestone Health, and Nature’s Sunshine Products accept no responsibility for results you get, whether good or bad, from using this information. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.
Note: More information about the products mentioned can be found at the end of the article.
J.M. Barrie summarized ‘growing up’ like this in Peter Pan: “All children, except one, grow up. They soon know that they will grow up, and the way Wendy knew was this. One day when she was two years old she was playing in a garden, and she plucked another flower and ran with it to her mother. I suppose she must have looked rather delightful, for Mrs. Darling put her hand to her heart and cried, ‘Oh, why can’t you remain like this for ever!’ This was all that passed between them on the subject, but henceforth Wendy knew that she must grow up. You always know after you are two. Two is the beginning of the end.”
Truth be told, this pretty much sums up aging. It begins at two.
Sadly, growing older is not easy or pretty for some people. Some of what happens in aging is under our control, and some is not. What can you do to protect and enhance your energy and health as you grow older? Lots! But in order to do it, you may need to change some longstanding habits. Yes, I do believe you can ‘teach an old dog new tricks.’
Clean up your diet to reduce gut problems
I’ve heard it said that we dig our graves one spoonful at a time. I know that sounds harsh, and it is true. How big is the spoon you are using?
Make conscious decisions to eat more vegetables, preferable lightly steamed, souped, or raw if your body tolerates raw. Most of us don’t eat enough vegetables – so however much you eat now, commit to adding 1 – 2 more servings per day, every day, somewhere in the day. Don’t save them all up for supper.
Get rid of coffee and tea (most herbal teas are okay). Coffee and tea kill your stomach, increase acid reflux, increase joint pain. Just think – if your stomach and joints felt better, how much younger would you feel?
Take care of your teeth to help get rid of gut problems
Your mouth and teeth are the first and most important parts of your digestive process. If your teeth are not in good condition, if they hurt when you chew, or if you have many missing there is no way you can chew your food well enough to get the nutrients out of it. If you are low-income, there are many community programs that help low-income seniors get the dental care they need. Taking care of this alone can make a huge difference in your health for years to come. Here’s a tip – if you have a dentistry school in your community, their students often do work at a significantly lower rate under the supervision of instructors. Dental hygiene schools also offer the same discounted services.
Take care of your stomach and intestines to correct gut problems
You’ve already gotten rid of coffee and tea, right? I know it may have been difficult. Over the next few years you will see how smart you were to do this!
As we get older our stomachs don’t work quite as well as they did when we were younger. We don’t produce digestive enzymes or juices as generously as we once did. You’ll know this is the case if you are ‘burpy’ or ‘farty.’
If you are burpy you might benefit from using a digestive enzyme. Consider for a moment when the stomach gas is most prevalent.
|when is stomach gas most prevalent?||Nature’s Sunshine Products Canada||Nature’s Sunshine Products USA|
|after eating breads or cereal, beans||Garden Essence Enzymes||Proactzyme|
|after eating proteins – eggs, beef, chicken, pork||Protein Digestive Aid||PDA|
|after eating anything||Digestive Enzymes||Food Enzymes|
If you are farty you might also benefit from using a digestive enzyme.
|my gas||Nature’s Sunshine Products Canada||Nature’s Sunshine Products USA|
|smells slightly sweet-ish in my opinion||Garden Essence Enzymes||Proactzyme|
|smells putrid, like rotten meat||Protein Digestive Aid||PDA|
|has a variable odor from one ‘toot’ to the next||Digestive Enzymes||Food Enzymes|
|has no odor||this is usually the result of swallowing air|
Take care of your bowels to relieve gut problems
Some holistic practitioners have said death begins in the colon. Constipation plagues many seniors.
Your colon is not a plastic or steel pipe. It is tissue that is designed to absorb the remaining nutrients, from food that is mostly digested, into your bloodstream. It is also supposed to usher out the residue of your food, some of which is toxic. If your bowels move slowly you have more time to absorb more toxic waste. To assess if your ‘bowel transit time’ is appropriate, do this little test. Eat about ¼ cup of whole kernel corn – and don’t chew it well. Make a note of the day and time you ate it, then watch your stool to see the corn come through. In a healthy body it should come through in 18 – 24 hours. Most seniors take 36+ hours. Not good.
There are many supplements that may help to speed up your bowel transit time to a healthier pace. Consider the following:
|Nature’s Sunshine Products Canada||Nature’s Sunshine Products USA|
|for dry, hard stool||CLT-X||CLT-X|
|for delayed bowel transit time||LBS II||Intestinal Soothe & Build|
Drink water to help correct gut problems
One final point. Drinking water is one of the best anti-aging moves you can make. As we age, our bodies dry out. When they dry out nutrients don’t get transported properly, toxins don’t get eliminated efficiently, joints do not get lubricated, and digestive juices don’t get formed. The rule of thumb here is to drink ½ ounce of water for each pound you weigh. Some of it will ‘go straight through you’ and some of it will hydrate you.
The first and most important step to staving off aging is to nourish your body properly and consistently. It’s not too late to start now regardless of your age.
Is your gut showing signs of aging?
If you have concerns about your digestive system health, or just don’t know where to begin making improvements, please contact me, Judith Cobb, to book an appointment. Skype, phone, webinar, and face-to-face appointments are available.I also invite you to like us on facebook and visit our other websites:
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Copyright © 2015 by Judith Cobb, Cobblestone Health Ltd. All rights reserved. Please respect the time it takes to write and publish articles. If you will link to this article and give proper attribution, you are encouraged to quote sections (though not the entire article).