The digestive system is made up of the gastrointestinal tract—also called the GI tract or digestive tract—and the liver, pancreas, and gallbladder. Most of the time, digestion begins with your mindset. How do you feel after you after you finish taking a bite of your food?
Unfortunately, most of us don’t take the time to be present with our meals, which can lead to poor digestion. Even worse, we gobble down our food without taking enough time to fully chew and allow the digestive enzymes in our saliva to properly break down our food. It’s no wonder most Americans are deficient in at least one nutrient and struggle with digestive challenges.
It takes about 20 minutes for your gut to tell your brain that it’s full. By that point, most people finish their plate and have already gone back for seconds (maybe even thirds).
Once leptin (the satiety hormone) finally reaches your brain, it’s too late, and you’ve likely already overeaten. It also comes as no surprise that those who eat too quickly tend to be more overweight.
However long it takes you to make a home-cooked meal from scratch with fresh, whole foods, and quality ingredients, that’s how long it should take for you to sit down and eat it—unless you’re slow-cooking a roast all day or throwing together a salad that only takes a few minutes. In that case, chewing each bite of food 30 to 40 times is best for digestion.
Some tips to slow down eating are: take smaller bites, don't overload your fork, and chew until the food has lost its texture. Take a mindful moment to appreciate the journey your food took to get onto your plate. Pay attention to every bite, how does it look, smell, taste, and feel in your mouth? Better digestion leads to better health!
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute as medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute as medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.