How to unstuff that “turkey”

February 28, 2012

Family, Health Concerns, Holidays

It is part of the holiday tradition — a family member or friend leans back in his chair, loosens his belt and proclaims with a sigh, “I ate too much.”

by Joanne Henning Tedesco — 

It is part of the holiday tradition — a family member or friend leans back in his chair, loosens his belt and proclaims with a sigh, “I ate too much.” Does this refrain sound familiar?

In fact, the average American consumes 3,000 calories during his holiday meal. That is double the daily recommended amount for most adults. It is not surprising then that many people experience indigestion and/or heartburn.

Heartburn is usually caused by eating too much food too fast. When this happens, acid from the stomach is pushed up into the esophagus, making the chest feel like it is on fire.

You may not be able to prevent your guests from overeating, but you can relieve some of the stress and strain of the day by planning ahead and having a few simple home remedies on hand. Your guests will feel better, and you will get credit for being a great host.

Following are some suggestions for natural ways to ease bloating and indigestion:

  • Before your meal, eat fresh-cut pineapple. It contains bromelain, an enzyme that supports digestion.
  • Before eating, drink one tablespoon of Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar in a glass of water. The vinegar will immediately balance the acid.
  • Eat a leisurely meal. This helps give the stomach time to signal the brain when it is full, thereby preventing overeating. (It takes the brain 20 to 30 minutes to signal the stomach that it has had enough food.)
  • Serve your meal at least three hours before bedtime.
  • Take a stroll with your guests after finishing your meal. A slow 10- to 20-minute walk can greatly help digestion.
  • Brew a pot of ginger tea or try candied ginger.

The holidays are a time of love and sharing, and provide an opportunity for us to connect with others. Nonetheless, whether it is the stress of organizing a holiday meal or overeating, these tips can help you relax and enjoy the wonderful company of family and friends.

Wishing you a healthy and joyful holiday.

 

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 28, Number 5, Oct/Nov 2009.

 

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