The breakdown of food affects health.
Indigestion is a condition characterised by difficulty in processing, insufficient breakdown, and absorption of consumed food in the stomach, which can be caused by stomach disease or other digestive system ailments, as well as a lack of appropriate enzymes.
One of the most common issues is insufficient gastric juice secretion or incomplete evacuation of stomach contents. The symptoms emerge when specific degradation processes start, causing severe discomfort to the sufferer.
Patients with this condition typically experience stomach heaviness and pain before or after eating, as well as bloating, acidity, nausea, reflux, appetite disturbance, constipation or diarrhoea, gas, vomiting, and other symptoms.
Indigestion is a sickness with potentially serious long-term effects, yet regrettably, many people accept it as usual. They frequently go to their chemist for assistance in getting a tablet that would miraculously eradicate the unpleasant sensations. However, this is ignoring the issue.
It is possible that these warning symptoms are a sign of a more serious disease. For example, abdominal heaviness and pain may be a sign of gastritis or ulcer disease, and persistent acids – of gastroesophageal reflux, while chronic constipation may be an indication of an overall disorder of the gastrointestinal tract’s functions.
Some of the factors that can cause digestive system damage are inadequate and poor nutrition (consumption of fried and fatty foods, doughy products, sugar, fizzy drinks, and a lack of fruits and vegetables), overeating, eating large quantities of food at once, which prevents processing of the food and burdens the organism extremely, as well as prolonged starvation, stress, fear, and anger, frequent use of medications, sedentary lifestyle.
Indigestion can be a sign of an ulcer, food poisoning, malignant and infectious liver illnesses, diaphragmatic hernia, esophageal spasm, gall stones, irritable bowel syndrome, endocrine system diseases, Crohn’s disease, and fungal infections, among other things.
This ailment might last for a short time or become persistent. It normally worsens with age, so it is best to take preventative measures, the most significant of which is a change in dietary habits and lifestyle.
In Ayurveda, digestion is represented by the digestive fire Agni. Food breakdown and absorption are ideal when Agni is high, and diseases are avoided.
If Agni is suppressed or weak for any reason, digestion is disrupted, and the gastrointestinal tract begins to accumulate undigested food.
These remains undergo a variety of processes, including decaying, which results in the release of poisons. They enter the bloodstream with the beneficial molecules and travel to all regions of the body. As a result, toxins, heavy metals, and other contaminants build in the body.
The chemicals eventually produce a layer of slimy mucus – Ama – that harms organs and tissues. Their normal functions are disrupted, and illnesses of the digestive system, urinary system, bones, and everything else begin, depending on the affected tissues and organs.
Impaired digestion can arise long before a specific sickness shows as a causal cause. This is because of your dietary habits. Meals are frequently consumed in front of the television, computer, or during convivial encounters, when individuals do not recognise they are full and continue eating. This is especially true while eating when feeling intensely emotional, or when eating late in the evening or at night, when the body is not active enough and Agni is thus weak.
Many people wake up at night to go to the refrigerator, believing that the only harm would be a couple of extra pounds. In reality, however, this is a necessary condition for the emergence of numerous disorders. The condition is exacerbated by regular consumption of huge amounts of heavy meals.
Another blunder is combining incompatible meals. Each item breaks down for a specific amount of time and in a specific manner, which might inhibit the breakdown of other foods and cause their stagnation in the digestive system.
Keeping the digestive fire burning Agni
Nutrition should be examined in order to sustain the digestive fire – what is eaten, when, and in what combinations. The Ayurvedic diet is tailored to the bodily type, whether Kapha, Pitta, or Vata, with some substantial variances in the good and detrimental elements.
At the same time, there are general nutrition guidelines to follow in order to maintain good digestion, as well as spices that spark the digestive fire and fight pollutants.
Because of the stomach secretions, hydration is extremely vital for the stomach. The juices will injure the stomach wall if it is dehydrated. As a result, drink one or two glasses of water around half an hour before eating. Water should not be consumed immediately before or during meals since it dilutes stomach fluids and weakens the fire. Furthermore, the water should not be cold and should be replaced with carbonated beverages.
It is beneficial to activate the gallbladder, for example, by eating beets or apples. Bile juice should not be thick since it will fail to perform its job of neutralising stomach acid in the small intestine if it is. In this instance, the body, as a self-regulating system, decreases stomach acid, which is required for meal digestion.
Eating should be done calmly, with concentration focused on the food consumed. When eating under the influence of emotions or while doing other’more important’ things, the body automatically pushes digestion to the back burner. Eating should also be avoided if there is no hunger since the digestive system will continue to process the preceding food, which will not be digested.
To aid digestion, begin with a pinch of Himalayan or rock salt and a little fresh ginger. Ayurveda also employs black pepper, fenugreek, cloves, fennel, cumin, coriander, and other spices to aid digestion and eliminate impurities.