Ginger is a fabulous spice for digestive health. It has a long history of traditional use for easing nausea, wind, bloating, and indigestion, and promoting the secretion of digestive juices that help breakdown food. In Ayurvedic medicine, it is used to ignite the “digestive fire” to aid sluggish digestion and support healthy metabolism.
This simple recipe for ginger pickle comes form nutritionist and Ayurvedic practitioner Sabine Horner at Asana Nutrition. There’s only 3 ingredients – fresh ginger, lime juice, and salt – and it keeps for up to a week in the fridge. If you’re experiencing bloating, indigestion, wind, or a sluggish digestion, enjoy a slice of this pickle before each meal to give your digestion a helping hand.
Preparation time: 5 minutes Ingredients:
approx.. 2 inch of fresh ginger (peeled)
2 pinch of mineral salt
Instructions Slice the ginger into long, thin strips and place in a jar. Cover the slices with the juice of half a lime and sprinkle with some salt to marinate. Shake well and keep in the fridge for up to a week. Eat one slice of pickled ginger before lunch and dinner.
Find out more about why and how these ingredients work so well together to support digestion in this short video from Sabine. And to find out more about Sabine’s work, catch her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 07539347643 or on:
What do indigestion, bloating, excess wind, heartburn, and weight gain all have in common?
They can all be caused by not chewing food properly!
It’s a simple thing to do, but chewing so often gets neglected in favour of eating quickly due to short lunch breaks, or multitasking with food and a laptop.
Retraining yourself to chew food thoroughly is a vital first step to digestive wellbeing and healthy weight balance.
Let’s look at why…
The action of chewing tells your brain to send messages to your stomach alerting it to the fact that food is on its way. These nerve signals tell the stomach to start producing the gastric juices that break food down.
Chewing mixes food with saliva and salivary amylase, an important digestive enzyme that begins the breakdown of carbohydrates. This is why food taste sweeter the longer you chew it: amylase is busy breaking down carbohydrates into simpler sugars.
Your stomach does not have teeth! If food isn’t chewed in your mouth, it won’t get broken down properly anywhere else. So, you can be eating the perfect diet and still be nutrient deficient, simply because your body can’t access the vitamins and minerals bound up in the food.
Chewing properly means you eat slower. Remember at school there was always one child who took ages to eat dinner? That was me! Sitting there chewing away whilst my friends were itching to get outside and play! But eating slowly is no bad thing. It allows you to tune into satiety signals, and realise exactly when you have eaten enough rather than ploughing on and finishing your plateful regardless of how you feel or how big the portions were.
Taking the time to chew food is part of the overall practice of eating mindfully. By eating in a calm relaxed manner, savouring each mouthful, you begin to appreciate each food and flavour and receive those all-important hunger and satiety signals.
Try these 5 basic steps to eating mindfully;
As you sit down to eat, take 5 slow deep breaths. This relaxes your nervous system, preparing you to ‘rest and digest’ (parasympathetic dominance), rather than trying to eat whilst in the stressed out ‘fight or flight’ response (sympathetic dominance). When stressed, the body down regulates digestive functions producing less stomach acid and digestive enzymes – pretty much guaranteeing that you’ll end up with indigestion and bloating!
Chew. Exactly how many times you chew each mouthful will depend on what you’re eating: yoghurt needs less chewing than steak for example. And yes, you do need to chew yoghurt and other soft foods like smoothies and mashed potato – otherwise, how will your stomach know that it’s on its way? If it helps, put your knife and fork down whilst you chew, and don’t prepare the next mouthful until you’ve swallowed what you’re chewing.
Savour the flavours. Really appreciate how each food tastes and feels in your mouth.
Once you’ve finished eating, sit still for 3-5mins to allow food to pass comfortably down to your stomach.
Wait for at least 10mins before deciding whether you want dessert or not. It takes roughly 15-20mins from the start of eating for your brain to register the actions of satiety hormones like leptin. These hormones work in a complex way, registering how stretched your stomach is, and how much fat you have stored in your body overall. They tell your brain when you are full, but if this message is ignored you eventually become resistant to their signals.
Eating mindfully does involve changing habits, and this can take time. It’s not always easy to do, especially if you’re juggling your own meal with feeding a couple of cranky toddlers! It really is worth persisting though, as no amount of supplements or nutrition guidelines can replace the benefits of good chewing.
If you’d like the benefits of mindfulness to spread beyond the kitchen table, and support other areas of your life, say hello to Joanne Bull at CalmWorks. Joe offers a range of mindfulness training options designed to build your inner calm and resilience to ongoing stress.
The Christmas ‘to-do’ list is a mile long, presents are waiting to be wrapped and you’ve just found out a gluten-free vegan is coming for lunch. All feelings of peace and joy have rapidly evaporated – what can you do to cope with festive stresses?
Let’s look at 5 top tips for coping with Christmas:
Stress: This is a particularly tough time of year for anyone suffering with depression or bereavement. The pressures of work and managing big family gatherings also ramp up the stress levels. Magnesium and B-vitamins are fantastic for soothing your nervous system; green leafy vegetables, cashew nuts, mushrooms and brown rice are all good sources. Bathing in Epsom salts is a traditional remedy and a great way to absorb magnesium through your skin! Add in a few drops of lavender oil too, then lie back and soak for a good 20 minutes.
Overindulgence: indigestion can be incredibly painful – even mistaken for a heart attack in severe cases! Chamomile and fennel teas are wonderfully soothing for sore or upset stomachs and can relieve painful trapped wind. Milk thistle offers herbal support for liver function and easing hangovers – do check with your healthcare practitioner before taking any herbal remedies alongside prescription medications though.
Special diets: you’re hosting a Christmas party and suddenly realise several guests are gluten and dairy free – what can they eat? Panic not, healthfood stores like Tullivers in York and Goodness Direct online now offer a full range of festive treats designed to meet specific dietary needs including gluten-free gravy granules, oat cream, soya cream, rice flour for making pastry, dairy free chocolate advent calendars and gluten-free Christmas puddings.
Colds and flu: ‘tis the season to be jolly unless you’re struck down with a virus! Homemade chicken and vegetable soup is a fantastic immune booster. Broccoli, peppers, kiwi fruit, mushrooms and sweet potatoes are all packed with antioxidant nutrients that help us fight off bugs. Top up your vitamin D with an oral spray supplement and keep some manuka honey to hand for making honey and lemon drinks to soothe croaky throats and coughs.
Headaches; stuffy atmospheres, stress, alcohol, sugary foods and dehydration can all trigger headaches. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, pace yourself with sweet treats and make time for a relaxing Epsom salt bath to ease tense neck and shoulder muscles.
One extra tip from personal experience….I once had bad flu over Christmas, it was rotten but made me realise that the world doesn’t end if you don’t send cards or presents or make it to parties. Friends and family still love you and thats all that matters!
Privacy & Cookies Policy
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.