If you’re eating a big meal or small meal, or if you’re a meat eater or vegan, one thing is for sure: you want that meal to be digested properly. And let’s face it, the more our digestive system works, the better we feel, the better we look and the better we perform.
So here’s the top beverages that you should drink after a meal:
Your morning brew isn’t just a wake-me-up for your brain, it’s also a stimulant for your digestive tract. Coffee gets things moving quickly in your gut, creating somewhat of a laxative effect. While coffee can help you time your daily bowel movement before you head out the door for work, you shouldn’t rely on it too much to help with digestion. Excessive amounts of caffeine can make you have diarrhea all day, which is not only uncomfortable but it also means that your body is pushing out nutrients before they have a chance to be absorbed.
Yes, the fizzy drink that’s been around for years and bad for your teeth, but a little swig of this can help get things moving in your tummy. Scientists have not yet thoroughly explained how the soft drink works, but it likely has something to do with its high acidity. Coca-Cola, due to its carbonic and phosphoric acid, has a pH of 2.6 and resembles the natural gastric acid that’s thought to be important for fiber digestion, researchers found. In addition, the sodium bicarbonate and carbon dioxide bubbles in the beverage might enhance the dissolving effect.
“Coca-Cola ingestion should be the treatment of choice considering that less endoscopies and accessories are needed and patients stay less at the hospital,” the researchers wrote. “Moreover, availability, low cost, rapid way of action, simplicity in administration and safety renders Coca-Cola a cost-effective therapy for gastric issues.
Peppermint Tea with Ginger, Lemon, and Cayenne Pepper
All of these ingredients—peppermint, ginger, lemon, and cayenne—are great for digestion and overall health. Ginger acts as a natural antibacterial and will help to soothe any uneasy feelings in your stomach. Chop ginger into pieces and put into a tea-pot before boiling it. Then pour the tea into a cup and add lemon and cayenne pepper. Lemon is extremely helpful in getting rid of bloating and gas, while cayenne pepper helps to speed up the metabolism. Wait for the tea to cool down before squeezing some lemon and adding a few shakes of cayenne pepper on top.
Just Plain ol’ Water
Water is nature’s digestive aid. It’s a component of every single cell that lines your digestive tract, meaning you need plenty of it in your diet just for those cells to function. Water keeps tissues in your digestive tract pliable while creating a moist environment that’s easy for food to move through. In addition, fiber — which helps regulate bowel movements — relies on water to do its job. Without water, fiber could slow things down, leaving you constipated. Aim for 91 ounces of water a day if you are a woman, the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine suggests. You’ll need 125 ounces daily if you’re a man.
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