Our digestive system is sensitive and can react to irritating influences with different symptoms. We will show you how you can stimulate, calm down or take care of your digestion in the event of constipation, diarrhea or cramps.

In this article you will learn:

  • How to stimulate your digestion when you are constipated
  • How to calm your digestion with diarrhea
  • How to protect your digestion against cramps

Stimulate digestion in case of constipation

Mindfulness is a big issue these days. Especially when dealing with stress. One point that should not be neglected here is diet. Because stress often prevents us from actively supporting our digestion. We can positively influence our intestinal activity with mindful nutrition.

A stressful lifestyle often leads to eating quickly on the go or in between meals. But do you remember the rule to chew every bite at least 30 times? Of course, you don’t have to count while eating. But chewing each bite well and thoroughly will make it easier for you to swallow the chyme. It also takes about 20 minutes for our body to release messenger substances that stimulate or inhibit our appetite. This means that those who are slow and conscious can perceive their feeling of satiety in good time and do not eat too much.

Time is an important factor in eating anyway. Because eating has something to do with enjoyment. And enjoyment takes time. We should take it and give our body the chance to properly digest our food. It starts with the ingestion of food. The saliva already contains digestive enzymes that break down the long-chain carbohydrates in our food into digestible molecules.

Foods rich in fiber , such as psyllium husk, flaxseed, wheat bran, dried plums, and other dried fruits, aid digestion. The German Nutrition Society recommends the intake of 30 grams of fiber per day. Around 70% of the population do not reach this recommended amount and should therefore pay particular attention to a diet rich in fiber.

When consuming foods rich in fiber, however, attention must be paid to their characteristics. Flaxseed and psyllium, for example, are among the swelling agents that swell on contact with water. Wheat bran  and  dried fruit,  on the other hand, are among the foods that dehydrate the colon. Therefore, you should make sure you drink  at least 1.5 liters per day  .

But it is not just nutrition that can give a sluggish intestine vitality again. Drinks such as fruit teas also  stimulate digestion. In addition, they are not only a supplier of fluids, but also soften the stool with their natural acidity. In general, you should ensure a daily fluid intake of around 1.5 liters.

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Drinking laxative teas is often  advised if you are constipated  . However, these irritate the intestines very strongly, so it is better to rely on the stimulating effects of fruit teas. Highly acidic foods such as fruit juices should also be avoided for this reason. Aloe vera juice and other preparations made from this plant are often recommended to aid digestion. The preparations usually have a very strong laxative effect, which can sometimes lead to  disturbances in the water and electrolyte  balance. Aloe vera supplements should not be used for too long as overdoses can occur. In some cases, these cause symptoms of poisoning with cramp-like pain and severe diarrhea. In that case you should consult a doctor.

Exercise also has a positive effect on our digestion. Cycling, jogging or a long walk stimulate bowel movements. You can find out more about the influence of exercise on digestion  in our “Body & Mind” section .

If you are constipated again and again, you should ask your  doctor or pharmacy for advice .

Dried fruit is a high-fiber food and supports digestion.

Digestion calm in the event of diarrhea

Diarrhea is stressful. Not just for your gut, but for your overall health. It is therefore all the more important to stay calm and observe the following tips .

With the liquid stool, we lose a large amount of fluids and electrolytes. Replacing these is essential for diarrhea . To compensate the electrolyte loss to provide electrolyte solutions at. You can easily make such a solution yourself from ½ liter of mineral water, ½ liter of orange juice, 1 teaspoon of salt and 8 teaspoons of sugar. The substances potassium, sodium chloride and glucose contained here can also be found in oral rehydration solutions that you can buy in the pharmacy.

Still water is suitable for replenishing the fluid balance. Certain types of tea also alleviate the discomfort. Chamomile, for example, has an analgesic, antispasmodic effect and can even have an anti-inflammatory effect (for example in the case of infectious diarrhea). The tannins in blueberries, blackberry leaves, goose fingerwort or St. John’s wort calm the intestinal mucosa and stabilize it, so that the penetration of further diarrhea pathogens into the intestine is reduced.

Most people do not feel like eating when they have acute diarrhea. But when you feel a little more appetite again, you should start with it carefully so as not to overload your intestines. Boiled rice or boiled potatoes are great ways to get used to eating again. It is best to cool it down so as not to irritate your stomach again. Rice and potatoes can also be lightly salted, because this way you supply your weakened body with electrolytes that were excreted with the stool. But be careful: Too much table salt, i.e. sodium chloride, does not help your body, because your body has mainly lost potassium as a result of the diarrhea.

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Rice and potatoes can be perfectly combined with  psyllium husks, natural yoghurt or curd milk . Psyllium husks act as a light laxative in the case of constipation, but in the case of diarrhea, they bind the fluid in the intestine and thus improve the bowel movement. The lactic acid bacteria contained in dairy products can also help to rebuild the intestinal flora.

The myth that cola and pretzel sticks help against diarrhea persists. However, this is a mistake.  On the contrary: this combination can even encourage diarrhea. The sugar contained in the cola binds water and thus removes even more of the valuable fluid from your body. Cola also contains caffeine, which removes valuable electrolytes from the body that are already lost due to diarrhea. Salt sticks are also not suitable as a remedy for diarrhea, as they mainly contain sodium and thus cannot compensate for the body’s loss of potassium.

And even if you feel like it, you should avoid pure salt water, sugar water and fruit juices if you have diarrhea. Because they can make acute diarrhea  even worse.

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To aid digestion, it is advisable to ensure that you drink at least 1.5 liters of fluids per day.

Ease of digestion in the event of cramps

No matter what the reason for your stomach cramping. You want this condition to go away as soon as possible. To do this, you should protect your stomach and intestinal tract as much as possible .

You can also have a great influence here through your diet. Light food, i.e. a light whole food, not only relieves your digestive system, but is also prepared very gently: steamed, steamed or grilled low-fat foods are easier for us to digest. If you then eat them over several small meals a day , your digestion will be relieved as much as possible.

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In addition, you should pay attention to a diet rich in fiber if you have stomach cramps . Because fiber supports your digestion. At this point, psyllium husks should once again be pointed out, which are extremely rich in fiber.

Even oatmeal contain a lot of fiber and additionally valuable minerals as well as vitamin B1 and vitamin E. It’s best to cook you from the oatmeal a porridge . Cooking makes the oat flakes even more digestible. Porridge soaks up excess stomach acid that can cause cramps.

However, foods to avoid if you have stomach cramps include  sugar, fat, large amounts of meat , fish or seafood, cabbage, sour fruits, onions, garlic, and legumes . In the worst case, they can actually make your symptoms worse.

But you can do more good for your stomach than just watch your diet. For example, warmth  relaxes  your cramped muscles. A hot water bottle, a warm cherry stone pillow on your stomach or warm compresses will help you and your digestive system to relax again. If you have a bathtub, you can also take a warm bath. A full bath has a relaxing and pain-relieving effect. In  this case, lavender and yarrow are particularly recommended as bath additives.

Not only warmth improves blood circulation in the muscles and relieves cramps. This effect can also be achieved through  gentle movements  and  relaxation exercises such as those performed in yoga, Pilates and other quiet gymnastic sports.

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A hot water bottle placed on the abdominal region can relax the muscles and increase wellbeing.

Home remedies for natural digestion

There are a variety of home remedies available to support your digestion . Which remedy is suitable depends on the type and causes of your symptoms.

A diet rich in fiber is particularly important in connection with digestion . Fiber, which is abundant in flax seeds and dried fruit, among other things, helps your digestion with constipation, diarrhea and stomach cramps.

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With the different foods you can eat to relieve your symptoms , however, it is very important to be aware of their specific effects. Because if a food supports your digestion but deprives your body of water, for example , you should be prepared for it and react accordingly by drinking enough.

Unfortunately, natural home remedies do not help with all intestinal problems and medication may be needed to improve your digestion. In this case, you should  ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

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