Stomach irregularity is usually a by-product of poor diet or sensitivities within the intestines such as mild food allergies or irritated bowl syndrome. Some of us have a hard time with internal gas build up and find cabbage, broccoli and other deep green veggies a problem to digest. I always encourage them that a proper diet should include deep dark fibrous and leafy greens but not everyone can tolerate them. Eating them raw is the best way to consume these foods yet that seems to be when irritation can be at its worst. Some individuals are so sensitive they cannot even consume these types of foods even when they’re cooked. Then there are those with acid issues who are unable to consume citrus or sour foods, and these items happen to be great digestive aids.
Dairy can also be a huge hindrance (usually lactose intolerance). Legumes can lead to gas issues and pain during digestion. For all of these problems you can find items such as Beano, acidophilus, bifidus, probiotics, and digestive enzymes at your local nutrition store but many people do not realize these items can also be found in most grocery stores as well.
A higher number of dairy products are now available for those who are lactose intolerant. Different types of yogurts and milks have been enriched with acidophilus and bifidus or active cultures to aid in smoothing out the pain of digestion and also aid in buffering.
For beans, you may want to try out the sprouted alternative. Sprouted beans are their highest in enzymes during that phase and a host of other nutrients are also enhanced.
Papaya, pineapple and bananas have excellent digestive enzymes which can aid in your dining experience so that you do not have to spend the night in pain or avoid foods you really enjoy. Raw foods seem to have the highest quality of digestive enzymes so make sure to eat the ones that you can tolerate and consume them raw as often as possible.
Fiber is excellent but try to get the most of it from foods rather than from starches such as cereals. Grains are encouraged but at a smaller amount compared to fresh fruits and vegetables. Many of the items listed in my metabolism boosters article also fall into the list of digestive helper foods.
Apple cider vinegar has been known to be used in salads, foods or even taken orally by the spoonful. I heard an old wives tale of a remedy for arthritis by taking apple cider vinegar and honey daily but I have no idea if this is actually true, although the individuals I heard this from firmly believe it! It is one of the more pleasant types of vinegar believed to have several natural healing powers.
The onion family can aid in digestion but it’s a toss-up since it is also one which can be an irritant to some people. If you don’t tolerate onions very well you may be okay with chives since they are related but easier on the system for those of you who are really sensitive.
Root vegetables are filled with minerals which can help you digest the foods they are eaten with. Potatoes and yams are great but carrots, radishes, turnips and rutabagas also make up the root vegetable family and are fine for lighter starch choices.
Chewing your food well and making sure to properly hydrate after your meals is very helpful. Some people like to chew on some fennel or anise seeds after their meals. Other more controversial ethnic traditions consist of certain liquors after eating a meal to help with digestion. Some examples of these liquors include Cinzano, Ouzo, fruit liquors, and moonshine. I recommend opting for those as your last resort unless you want to get a little buzzed after your meal!