Tis the season for ….Indigestion

holiday feastA Season of Overindulgence Christmas time, the most wonderful time of the year.  Friends + family + parties + rich foods + overindulgence = indigestion.   We are a culture marked by consumerism, marketing and overindulgence.  Now I’m not trying to be a Scrooge, but the facts are there is  growing rate of obesity in the U.S. makes it clear that our indulgences are often in food.  We know that overindulgence in rich and fatty foods can cause stomach upset.  But stress, hormones,  antibiotics and food sensitivities can also cause digestive distress including acid reflux, indigestion, nausea, constipation and diarrhea.  Traveling and visiting relatives and friends can put us in situations where we are eating foods we are not accustomed to, setting you up for digestive upset.

Drugs are often a short term fix  Over the counter products for digestive issues ranked high in consumer demand in an article on Drug Topics, a newsmagazine  for pharmacists.  They indicated that there are thousands of new products introduced to the market each year and that pharmacists do not have enough time to evaluate what products to stock on their shelves  Just the other week, November 29, 2010,  the FDA ordered a recall of 12 MYLANTA liquid products and one AlteraGEL liquid product, Rolaids, Children’s Benadryl and Junior Motrin.   Could it be that the FDA is also having trouble keeping up with product safety?

If you’d like to support a healthy digestive system, look to these historical ingredients: 

Peppermint The first oil we use for healthy digestive function  is peppermint essential oil. (not for children under 3).   According to the American Botanical Council,  peppermint oil is used in the United Kingdom to treat gastrointestinal issues including symptoms of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), nausea and diarrhea.   We apply the oil to the soles of the feet, the stomach or place a drop in a glass of water and sip slowly (use only Therapeutic, food grade peppermint essential oil from a company you trust).essential oils for indigestion

Ginger, tarragon  and fennel essential oils are soothing to the digestive tract as well.   A Digestive blend of (tarragon, ginger, peppermint, juniper, fennel, lemongrass, anise, patchouli essential oils) may be super helpful in keeping digestive functions running properly.  Dilute 1 part essential oil to 4 parts olive oil or vegetable oil and place in a capsule to ingest prior to a meal, or apply to the abdomen or soles of the feet on Vita-Flex points.  

Aloe Vera can also soothe stomach upset and cool overactive stomach acids, especially symptoms of IBS (irritable bowel) and Crohns Disease. Keep in mind that food grade Aloe is a natural laxative, so don’t over do it!  

Choose foods wisely and if you overindulge, make sure you calm your system down with alkaline foods that extinguish the fire of Acidic foods.

So go ahead, enjoy a cookie or two, enjoy your time with family & friends this season and keep a bottle of peppermint essential oil on hand.

With some careful planning and self-control, you may be able to lessen your chances of stomach upset this season.  Be reasonable in your intake of rich and high fat foods.  Lessen your intake of acidic foods:  wheat products, white flours & sugars, processed and deep fried foods, and plan to eat plenty of “green” vegetables and foods that  cool your system down.  Manage stress in healthy ways and enjoy the season!

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