With the festive season upon us, many of us do have a tendency to let our hair down and eat, drink and be merry! And why not, it is Christmas after all. However, everything has two sides, and along with all the merriment, we can end up over eating or drinking and so suffer with bloating and heartburn. Not so pleasant!
Here are a few tips to get you through the festive fun, as smoothly as possible.
- How you eat is as important as what you eat is. Sit up straight while you eat and after you finish your meal, rest for at least 1/2 hour by sitting up or in a lounge chair, but don’t lie down. Give your body around 3 hours before lying down. This allows food and acids to pass through the stomach more easily.
- Eat smaller amounts of food at a sitting, and wait 20 to 30 minutes then eat some more. Eating a lot of food in one sitting will increase the acid requirements to digest your food.
- Eat slowly and chew your food well. Depending on what is eaten and your ability to digest, it takes around 2.5 to 3 hours to have half the stomach contents empty and around 4 to 5 hours to completely empty the stomach.
- Wait at least one hour after eating before you consume caffeine, as caffeine is an irritant for certain people and can cause some reflux.
- Avoid soft drinks or any fizzy drinks, even soda water, as they are known to trigger heartburn symptoms, as are spicy foods and saturated fats.
- Several days before the festive meals, start to take a probiotic each day. This will help to keep the balance of bacteria in the gut.