Tag Archives: digestion

Mel Collie | Bloated?

Mel Collie | Bloated?

Most of us nowadays are stressed and rushing around, eating food on the go, not chewing our food well, feeling bloated and tired, anxious and depressed with obesity on the increase too…. can we help ourselves by starting with the simple things, by looking at how we eat.

When we are constantly day after day stressed and anxious, spinning many plates, eating on the run, doing many things all at once, your sympathetic nervous system (fight and flight) is in dominance , which leads to IBS, digestive issues, skin disorders,sleep issues, anxieties, low calcium absorption, low uptake of minerals in the food you eat, low selenium, increased bacterial infections increase, feelings of overwhelm, reaching for bad food choices.

Stress slows down the digestive system, the parasympathetic(rest and digest)  nervous system never gets a chance, it shuts down, affecting digestion and our ability to rest.

Do you actually schedule a time for breakfast, lunch and dinner, do you really make time for yourself to take time out of your stressful routine when it comes to meal times? or do you grab a sandwich and eat it in the car, walking down the street, or skipping lunch and snacking at your desk in the afternoon?

When you eat your food, chew it well, without the TV on, in a calming and peaceful happy environment, away from the computer/i-pad, away from social media and the noise of the TV and the distraction of the mobile.  This might seem impossible sometimes if the kids are driving you crazy, but, with some patience, meals at the table with no mobiles or tvs on is possible, mobiles and TV’s just  distract you and mean you chew less and dont even notice the food being eaten, which in turn can lead to you feeling more hungry and eating more food.

Just this simple thing can make a massive difference to your digestion, your health and wellness. You will find you sleep better, your good digestive bacteria increases, constipation decreases, increases the chances of your gut healing, helps your mood and decreases anxieties as theres a connection from the brain to the gut.

Also, a benefit to your digestive system is to eat fats – we tend to think fats are bad for us and we will get fat if we eat fats, but ..fat helps your brain, Omega 3 is brilliant, fish for example, or a really good quality fish oil, avocados are a good source of fats too. Omega 6 fats need to be kept lower, we dont need as much Omega 6 as we do Omega 3. So keep the overall eating of nuts to a handful a day, and change from sunflower/rapeseed/canola oil to coconut oil or olive oil or ghee.

When your digestion is your priority, your whole self benefits. The mood hormone, Seratonin, is produced in your gut, 80% of it, but not when your digestion isnt working well.

1. Eat slowly, your mouth helps your gut, digestion starts in the mouth, not the stomach.

2. Enjoy your mood as you eat your food, smile, laugh, eat with people you like to spend time with.

3. Lower grains/bread and dairy consumption, gluten and dairy (milk/cake/biscuits/cheese) can all aggravate the gut absorption of minerals, and increase anxieties and depression.

4. Take time out to eat your meals, slow down, eating is your time, not work time.

Love the good fats. Love your belly without the bloat.

 

Mel Collie

x

www.melcollie.com

www.melcollie.co.uk

Mel Collie | Anxiety & Stress

Mel Collie | Anxious & Stuck? Breathe…

Mel Collie | Anxious & Stuck? Breathe…

 

Isnt it annoying when someone tells you to just relax…especially when you are stressed, busy, feel anxious, cant seem to find a way out of the circles you rush around in

Whats going on and how can you help yourself?

Lets have a look deep inside your system, the autonomic nervous system (ANS) which controls the functions to maintain life. The ANS has 3 systems, two of which I will discuss here , that cannot work at the same time, its one or the other, and as these systems can be out of balance which can affect your stress levels, breathing, mindset, digestion, immune system, inflammation, anxiety..

So lets first look at the PNS:

PNS – that stands for your Parasympathetic Nervous System.
This is your rest and rebuild system. One of its jobs are to be responsible for your digestion and repair of your body and elimination of waste and toxins. To help it, relaxation, de stress, healthy eating, quiet times.

SNS – that stands for your Sympathetic Nervous System
This is also known as your fight or flight system. It prepares your body to fight or flee, run from a threat or danger.

Are they out of balance?

When the SNS is dominant you will probably be feeling anxious, stressed, drinking caffeine and eating processed foods and sugar. Maybe over training at the gym and not recovering or resting. The SNS requres delivery of the blood to the muscles which means that it takes it away from your centre,from the digestion. Thats why they recommend you dont exercise after eating . If this happens, one symptom you may have will be constipation as the digestion will be poor.

SNS dominance can also show up as you waking up feeling as though you havent slept well, sweating at night, feeling anxious, stress from financial issues, over-eating (especially processed foods that fail to nourish you with minerals and vitamins) , lack of sex or passion in your relationship through either your reduced desire (Too busy, too tired?) or you move towards the other end of the scale and have too much sex but with little connection with your partner- or who ever you are with.

We can suffer from many of the all at once cant we..feeling tired, worried about the mortgage, worried about deadlines at work, drinking a lot of coffee to stay awake, reaching for toast and sandwiches and pasta for quick and easy solutions for food, no time for sex, shallow breathing, bad digestion, constant colds and inflammation, feeling anxious…its not hard to see that many of us can be stuck in a dominant Sympathetic Nervous System.

So, what can you do about it?

1. Exercise. But the right kind. Find relaxing exercise like Yoga or Pilates, going for walks in the woods or on the beach, Tai Chi, reduce time in the gym. If you find that training hard is getting you nowhere, no results, try and change your routine for exercise thats not as harsh on your system. You might not like it, but you will begin to see results. This is what they mean when they tell you to listen to your body. Listen, then act. The more your ignore your bodies cries for help, the more it will persist.

2. Breathing . Focus on deep breathing, slowly, from the diaphragm and not from dominating your breathing from the chest

3. Nutrition. Choosing fruits and vegetables over pasta, bread, sugar, ready meals. Eat great fresh food 5 or 6 times a week, have one day off, see what happens. You may need to eat well 7 days a week to move a little more to your PNS system.

4. Meditate. Quieten the mind from the negativity and the chatter in your head which can lead to stress, negativity, taking on too much, reducing your self worth so never saying “No” to work which will increase your workload and stress. Meditation will help you remain calm and focused. Use it like a dentist or doctors appointment – never miss a session, even if its for a minute.

5. Quiet Time – quiet time at the end of the day reading a book, having a bath, turn off the TV (the News can be stressful..) talk to your partner, have a cuddle.

6. Care for yourself. Take care of yourself with regular massage. Find someone local who can offer you a special deal – buy 5 get one free for example, as an incentive to keep you going. The aromatherapy oils , the touch you feel, all help relax and reduce stress in the mind as well as the body, boosts the immune system, increase wellness and vitality through relaxation.

We are all different, what works for one wont work for another.

If you recognise that you are SNS dominant, make a couple of changes, thats all, just start by picking one for 7 days to adopt, if it all seems overwhelming at first, then take time to see what happens, what changes.

Some of us may only require a couple of small changes, others may require more, one size doesnt fit all, you find what works for you.

Enjoy creating your own sunshine.

Mel Collie
x

References: Paul Check – July 2013 newsletter. Paul Check – How to Eat Move & Be Healthy.
Byron Robinson. The Abdominal & Pelvic Brain (free to download and read http://archive.org/stream/abdominalandpel00robigoog#page/n2/mode/2up)
Deepak Chopra – Super Brain
Norman Doidge – The Brain that Changes itself