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A gut-friendly Thanksgiving meal. How to prepare your gut for Thanksgiving.

By PYM STORE

How to Prepare Your Gut for Thanksgiving

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Wondering how you can support your gut health this Thanksgiving to avoid the post-Thanksgiving indigestion, bloating, constipation, acid reflux, and food coma? You've come to the right place!

Don't worry- we won't be telling you all the things you CAN'T eat. Go ahead and enjoy Grandma's famous pecan pie!

There are plenty of ways to support your gut health without totally missing out on all your favorite Thanksgiving meal classics. Here are 6 tips to support your gut health on Thanksgiving.

1. Take a probiotic supplement

One of the easiest ways to prepare your gut for Thanksgiving is to take a probiotic supplement.  Probiotics are important for maintaining balance in your gut microbiome. When your gut microbiome is full of good bacteria, it can support optimal digestion. Probiotics can be helpful for bloating, which is a common symptom on Thanksgiving! 

It's even more helpful to make probiotics a part of your supplement routine well before Thanksgiving, so that by the time Turkey Day rolls around, your gut is already full of happy bacteria and ready for action! 

Mood Biotics are the best probiotics for Thanksgiving because they not only support your gut health, but also your mental wellness. Mood Biotics contain 6 strains of bacteria that have been shown in research to reduce symptoms of stress, anxiousness, and overwhelm...common feelings on Thanksgiving!

2. Drink lemon water

Choose lemon water over soft drinks or alcohol to optimize your digestion on Thanksgiving. Drinking lemon water first thing when you wake up on Thanksgiving morning will be helpful in setting up your digestive system for the rest of the day!

You don’t have to save lemon water for the morning only; you can drink it throughout the day because the citric acid in lemons stimulates stomach acid production, which helps digestion.

3. Eat a fiber-rich breakfast

If you're worried about being constipated after Thanksgiving, make sure to get some fiber in your breakfast! The fiber from plant foods fills you up so you're not as tempted to overindulge on appetizers, and encourages digestion. Eating a variety of plant foods also supports the diversity of your gut microbiome for better gut health.

Try adding this smoothie along with a protein and healthy fat for breakfast on Thanksgiving morning:

Ingredients:

  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 apple, cored
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth! Serves two.

4. Chew your food thoroughly and slow down

Chewing is an underestimated art form that’s necessary for good nutrition. Not only does chewing well break food down in a way that makes nutrients more available, but it also exposes it better to digestive enzymes in your saliva. In other words, properly chewed food reduces the stress of food breakdown on your gastrointestinal system.

Carbohydrate digestion begins in the mouth with an enzyme called salivary amylase. If you aren’t chewing your food properly, that initial step of digestion gets hindered! Because the Thanksgiving dinner is full of carbohydrates, chewing your food thoroughly is important to keep the digestive system running smoothly.

5. Stay active

The health of your gut depends on more than your dietary choices. Physical activity increases blood flow to your digestive organs and the muscles surrounding them. This, in turn, causes food to move more quickly through our digestive tract. 

To stay active this Thanksgiving, you can help wash the dishes, take a short walk, play with the kids or pets, and avoid the couch as much as possible. 

6. Drink ginger tea

Ginger is a powerhouse for healthy digestion, and can help your body process all that pumpkin pie! In fact, research shows that ginger can increase gastric emptying, which is the ability for the body to empty food from the stomach. This is awesome for a large meal like you have on Thanksgiving! Ginger has also been shown to be helpful for acid reflux symptoms.

And there you have it! Enjoying yourself at Thanksgiving and not being too overly worried about food is important, but keeping these 6 tips in mind, you can still have your favorites without the bloating, heartburn, or post Thanksgiving slump.