Do you think that you’re getting the right amount of nutrients? We consume numerous foods on a daily basis but ensuring that we obtain all their nutrients can be a tricky business. A balanced diet is a key to health. Many a times, the mechanisms which facilitate the proper absorption of nutrients are impaired. Consequently, this prevents our systems from fully benefiting from the diet consumed.
But don’t worry because we’ve got your back. This article will discuss how you can reverse the phenomenon mentioned above. We will explain how you can make the best out of your daily diet, and ensure that your body does not remain starved of essential nutrients.
Work on reducing your stress levels
In the current busy world, everyone tends to be heavily burdened and under a lot of pressure.Hence, when you sit down to eat with a disturbed state of mind, your brain is triggered to release stress hormones. These hormones secrete adrenaline that makes your heart beat faster and slows down the digestion rate. Your body invests all its efforts in trying to eliminate the stress. Therefore the much-needed nutrient absorption takes a back seat. A good solution would be to relax as you begin to consume your meal; cherish every bite and engage in light conversations with your dining partners to achieve this goal.
Let your body recover from those intense workouts
If you engage in intense workout routines, your digestive system is prone to admit some stress from the physical activity. Additionally, vigorous exercise can diminish the magnesium levels, which is of immense importance. A good advice is to allow time for your body to recover from the workouts,or balance the high-intensity workouts with some yoga. This way, your health remains on track, and you benefit from the food you indulge in.
Try some new strategies when cooking
Employing new techniques on a daily basis can help you boost your intake of nutrients. For instance, if garlic is the ingredient you’re putting to use today, let it rest for a while once you’ve chopped or minced it before adding it to your cooking pan. This enables the production of several important compounds in ginger which can help elevate your heart’s health. It also decreases the risk of cancer formation. Similarly, let the potatoes cool before consuming them. This causes the starch in them to act like fiber instead and helps with digestion and nutrient absorption.
Let black pepper do some magic
Black pepper is loaded with a compound called piperine, which boosts your nutrient absorption by 25%. Black pepper also enables your foods to increase their mobility in your gastrointestinal tract. Not only that, if consumed with turmeric, piperine increases the absorption of the active compounds of turmeric by 2000%; thus, contributing heavily to your overall fitness and health.
Incorporate some healthy fats in your diet
Pairing your daily veggies with some fat can offer you twice the benefit! This is because fat helps to increase the absorption of minerals and vitamins.Foods rich in fat include avocados, salmon, nuts, seeds, egg yolk, liver, olive, and coconut. So next time you add some oil in your pan, try using coconut oil for the maximum dietary benefit.
Limit your daily caffeine dosage
The only way to wake up in the morning for most people is to head for a cup of coffee, or two, or three! Caffeine significantly affects nutrient absorption in your gut and threatens the proper absorption of iron. According to research, caffeine has the tendency to reduce iron absorption by 80%. So while you don’t need to give up on your coffee altogether, try to consume it after a couple of hours after eating. Alternatively, use caffeine free tea or coffee. You could also dilute the effect by adding some sugar and milk.
Combining the correct foods together
Food is complicated, but the right knowledge can set you on the path to a healthy lifestyle. What you like to pair up affects absorption of nutrients. Like the best pair to triple iron, uptake is to eat vitamin C and spinach. Calcium is absorbed more than 65% when vitamin D is present like in salmon and yogurt. If you want to increase the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, K from vegetables it is suggested to use fat as well. An interesting fact is when we drink strawberry milkshake the calcium isn’t absorbed as it forms oxaloacetate. Therefore, it is greatly discouraged to add strawberries and cocoa to milk. Vitamin C promotes absorption of antioxidants in the body.
Avoid the calorie intense dressings and condiments
Adding heavy or calorie rich dressing to salads should be avoided. Instead, add a little olive oil to digest carotenoids and phytochemicals that release the antioxidants in the body.
Consume less alcohol
Alcohol is an inhibiting factor for absorption of nutrients in our meal. Though alcohol enhances the flavor of food, it should be avoided. This will increase the uptake of nutrients like zinc and folic acid. Therefore, try and party a little less from now on.
You might have heard since childhood to chew 33 times before swallowing. Well, the logic behind it is to break down the food as much as possible. This will increase surface area for the enzymes to act on the food. This process of chewing begins and ends in the mouth with the release of digestive enzymes. So take small bites. We understand your love for food, but taking smaller portions will ease digestion.
Gut bacteria to the rescue
Your body is an amazing phenomenon that has bacteria residing in it, which help breakdown and absorption of nutrients. Probiotic assists the gut bacteria to digest more food. Therefore, it is highly suggested to you takes probiotics to ease stomach ailments, reduce inflammation, and increase absorption. Studies show the right bacteria in the gut are important for growth and the right nutrition. If you are having doubts on nutrient absorption go for a gut check.
Eat fresh produce
Eating fresh produce is one of the best Consumption of fresh harvest within 72 hours is ideal. Don’t fall a pray to distributors being organic or traditional but instead target local farms or markets for energy and nutrient rich produce.
Chop and dice
Food preparation is another significant factor. When you cut vegetable or fruits, the cell walls are distorted, therefore releasing the nutrients. So you should eat them quickly to minimize loss. The phytic acid present in grains and beans is reduced when soaked in water results in the inability of iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium absorption. Garlic and onion contain an enzyme alliinase which is release after chopping and crushing that helps produce allicin in food. The allicin fights against disease-causing free radicals.
Best storage of fruits and veggies
Storage is a key to keep fruits and vegetables fresh for a longer period as they are perishable goods. Refrigerate fruits and vegetables in the crisper compartment. Try using zip-lock baggies for leafy vegetables as they lose their water content and nutrients quicker if left open. Vegetables should be kept away from direct sunlight as poisons develop in them. You can also store cut fruits and vegetables for a longer time if you squeeze a little lemon juice on them.
Absorption of water soluble and heat sensitive vitamins
When taking storage into consideration, we should look out for the kind of cooking method as many foods contain water soluble and heat sensitive nutrients. Heat sensitive vitamins include vitamin B1, vitamin B5, folate and vitamin C. Vitamin C is found in oranges, broccoli, avocado and Brussel sprouts should be eaten raw. Therefore, we recommend that you consume water-soluble foods raw; avoid boiling or cooking them.
Best cooking methods
Cooking some foods increases the availability of proteins. Moreover, protein is more digestible when cooked like in egg. Beta-carotene is a precursor of vitamin A so when taken in the body it readily absorbed when veggies contain it are cooked breaking cell walls. So next time you step in the kitchen, ease up on the medium rare stuff. You should instead make sure that everything is well cook.
There you go, folks! Try introducing the techniques mentioned above in your daily lifestyle, and you’ll be doing your health a favor. Not only will you feel more energetic, but the benefits of the nutrients in a balanced dietwill soon become apparent in your daily life.