Being from America, the country that has the most constipated citizens in the world (close to 60 million of the population), I seriously through rice was good for digestive health.
When I first started living in Thailand, my diet was absolutely horrid — consistent of fizzy drinks, 7-11 food, and constant KFC. I was afraid of eating Thai food any longer because of an immense stomach bug I had for around 5 weeks. When this happened, I began making all the wrong decisions, leading to 3-4 day constipation cycles. It wasn’t until 3-4 years ago when I start learning about healthy bacteria, probiotics, echinacea and a few other things that allowed me to achieve the healthy digestive tract that I desperately needed.
Fiber, also known as roughage, is the part of plant-based foods (grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans) that the body can’t break down. It passes through the body undigested, keeping your digestive system clean and healthy, easing bowel movements, and flushing cholesterol and harmful carcinogens out of the body.
Fiber comes in two varieties: insoluble and soluble.
Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. It is the bulky fiber that helps to prevent constipation, and is found in whole grains, wheat cereals, and vegetables such as carrots, celery, and tomatoes.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water and helps control blood sugar levels and reduce cholesterol. Good sources include barley, oatmeal, beans, nuts, and fruits such as apples, berries, citrus fruits, and pears.
Many foods contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. In general, the more natural and unprocessed the food, the higher it is in fiber. There is no fiber in meat, dairy, or sugar. Refined or “white” foods, such as white bread, white rice, and pastries, have had all or most of their fiber removed.
And this is why understanding is very important when it comes to eating and rice in general. White rice has had all the fiber stripped from it. Brown rice and the other types out there have a considerable amount of fiber that will improve your overall digestive health.
So, for many American out there, how can you begin to bulk up on fiber and relieve your ever-clotting intestines? There are some ways.
Chia Seeds and Flak Seeds, which can be found in most whole-food markets, are high in omega-3 fatty acids and are known to lower cholesterol.
Most websites recommend carbohydrates, which also have good fiber….but these are also UNHEALTHY, through my eyes. Anytime I eat carbs and a lot of them, my stomach begins the back-up process.
Personally, Aloe Vera, which is the sacred nectar of the world, is my absolute favorite. If I drink this the night before and when I wake up, my digestive track works like a charm.
I’ve also boiled up carrots as part of my dinner in the evening. Make sure they’re not in the boiling hot water for too long, or all the nutrients will be wicked away. Have yourself a cucumber by your side, chop it up and gobble away.
I hope this has helped you, and if you have any pointers, comments or questions, please let me know!
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