June 13, 2014
Ten Simple Rules For Digestive Health by Dr. Whimsy Anderson, ND image

Many of my patients have issues concerning digestive health.  These problems range from mild digestive upsets and transient stomach viruses to more serious conditions like Crohn’s disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  These problems have often existed for several years before they are adequately diagnosed and treated.

There are many natural remedies that can be offered to people who have digestive problems.  Sometimes a few dietary changes and mild supplements can be enough to heal a person’s problem. Even in more severe cases, natural medicine supplements can often help to ease and relieve problems that even conventional medicine may not be able to address.

Whether you have a chronic digestive problem or just the occasional mild upset, there are a few simple rules you can follow that will help maximize your chances of good digestion:

  1. Take a moment before you begin eating to pray, meditate, or simply pause.  Whether or not you are religiously observant, taking a moment before you begin eating helps create a peaceful space as you begin to enjoy your meal.
  2. Take your time and enjoy your food. In today’s busy world, this can often be difficult to do. But when you eat, be mindful of the speed at which you are consuming your food . Take the time to slow down and really enjoy what you are eating.  Many stomach problems are caused simply because people eat too quickly.  This can shock the system and prevent the body from preparing to begin the process of digestion.
  3. In addition to eating more slowly, chew thoroughly, and think about the food you are eating and how you chew it.  Simply chewing food into smaller pieces can help break it down so that the body can digest it more easily.
  4. Don’t eat when you are angry or upset, and do not eat at a table where people are engaged in strife.  If you are feeling tension or you are upset, take a few moments to breath slowly and deeply.  This will let your body know that you are entering a relaxed state and will aid in digestion.  Tension and stress can create all manner of health problems, including digestive upset.
  5. Do not wait until you are “starving” before you eat.  Being extremely hungry only encourages you to eat more quickly and to eat too much.
  6. Never eat until you are “stuffed”; eat until you are satisfied, but no more.
  7. Do not fill your plate with food.  If you do, you will feel obligated to eat everything on your plate.  Instead, take a little of everything, and if you need to take more, you can. But try to be mindful of not overeating.
  8. Learn to prepare your own food.  The act of preparing food, of smelling and tasting the food as it is being prepared, readies the stomach for digestion.  When we eat on the run, or when we go to restaurants or fast food places, we frequently miss this early stage of preparation and our digestion suffers.
  9. Eat food that is unprocessed.  Choose whole grains, fruits, and vegetables that are fresh and in season.  If you can afford to do so, eat vegetables that are organically grown.  This is better for the earth, and better for your own overall health as well.


While eating, be grateful for what you have, for your friends your teachers, your family and loved ones.  Be grateful and respectful to the person who has prepared the meal. Taking the time to be grateful is just one more way to insure that you have a pleasant meal and an easy digestive process.

All written contents are copyright 2014 by Dr. Whimsy Anderson, ND. No reuse or re-publication without permission. Please note that the information provided on this site is intended for informational purposes only. Nothing contained herein is intended to treat, diagnose, prevent, or cure any illness or medical condition. Consult a doctor before beginning any diet or exercise regimen or before taking vitamins or supplements. Statements on this site have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.