First we eat, then we digest, then we excrete. It’s an everyday process that we don’t always put a whole lot of thought into. The thing is, we should and we need to. So let’s get to the straight goods on why we should be thinking about what goes in to our bodies and what comes out.
Western society has a high rate of colorectal diseases that are related to what we eat. Our Western Diet is high in meat, dairy and refined foods that do not contain what our colon needs – fibre. To maintain good digestive health we have to include fibre (the kind that comes from food, not over the counter fixes) and lots of it in our diet.
How can we increase fibre in our diet?
- Eat whole foods; they naturally contain fibre.
- Eat a lot of vegetables; they should be the largest portion of your meal.
- Eat fruit; pears, berries and apples are particularly high in fibre.
- Eat whole grains, not refined grains; they still have the husk and bran, which provides nutrition and fibre.
- Eat chia, flax, sesame and hemp seeds; they pack a lot of nutritional punch and fibre.
The colon is such an important part of our digestive process. The role of the large intestine or colon comes after all of the nutrients from our food have been absorbed. The colon gets rid of any left over food, bacteria and waste. We don’t want the remnants of food sitting in our colon; in fact we want to get waste out as quickly as possible. When waste sits in the intestinal tract it can putrefy and release toxic by-products that can cause irritation, inflammation and ulceration in the colon. This is why we need to move our food through; in other words we need to poop – regularly.
Not sure if your food is moving through you at a good rate? Do the beet test. This will test your transit time, or time that it takes for the beets to pass through your system. It should be about 12- 48 hours for food to pass. If it is taking longer you want to look at increasing your fibre intake. Note, you should also look at increasing your water intake to help with digestive health and overall cellular health.