Monday, April 27, 2015

What's The Poop? Scoop No. 1

• POOP (noun)   The noun POOP has 4 senses:  1. obscene terms for feces 2. a stupid foolish person 3. slang terms for inside information 4. the rear part of a ship.

As you can see, I could've gone in any direction with this for my title. I'll also apologize up front. If  you're one of those people that squishes up their face when someone talks about poop, then you might want to skip this one.  As my brother likes to say, "Lighten up Francis," because honey, everybody poops.

That being said, there is NOTHING like a good poop! I know you're smiling because -- you know exactly what I mean, don't ya jellybean?

Now, to start on this extremely personal subject, we begin at the digestive system. When most people think about health they think of a vibrant, glowing, toned physique with unending energy. While that's true and goes along with it, good or bad health really is an inside job.  One of the major places to begin to look at health is in one's intestines. I'll be honest, I don't really think about what is going on inside my intestinal tract while I'm eating whatever it is I am eating. And I'm guessing neither do you.

Here are a few things you might not realize about the human digestive system. It's about 30 feet long. Healthy digestion takes about 24 to 72 hours. The minute we eat digestion starts. Food creates saliva which contains a couple of enzymes that breakdown starches (amylase) and fats (lipase). Then it slips down the esophagus into the stomach where gastric juice breaks down protein. While this is going on, peristalsis is happening, which is where waves of muscular contractions move along the stomach wall churning all that slimy goo up! Are ya still with me?

One to two hours later, this thick stuff is moved into the duodenum, which is part of the small intestine where it mixes with more digestive enzymes from the pancreas, liver and intestine, then passes into the small intestine. Your small intestines are about 22.5 feet. That's kind of crazy when you think about that inside of you!

After the thick stuff (it's called chyme, for the record) is fully digested it is absorbed into the blood stream.  Here's the really  important part I want you to really hear: 95% of the absorption of nutrients are absorbed at this stage. Foods with high nutrients are the ones that are dark, leafy, colorful - they have seeds, they grow and they rot. REAL FOOD. Aka: nothing processed: these have no nutrients.

But I digress. Let's digest the rest of this whole process eh?

Blood containing the absorbed nutrients is carried away from the small intestine and transported to the liver for filtering, removal of toxins, and nutrient processing. Everything else left over goes into the large intestine where digestion is held to allow fermentation which further breaks down some things that might remain after its "workout" in the small intestine. The large intestine is about 5 feet long and is less rambunctious in its activity. The large intestine absorbs water from the chyme and stores feces until it can be eliminated through ur... I mean your, anus. It took everything I had not to do it... almost!  "Lighten up Francis" comes to mind about now: GIGGLE

There are over five hundred species and three pounds of bacteria in your gut. It's a huge chemical factory that helps you digest food, produce vitamins, help regulate hormones, release toxins and produce healing compounds that keep your gut healthy.  Many diseases that seem totally unrelated to the gut, such as eczcema, psoriasis, and even arthritis are actually caused by gut issues. What's your gut telling you?

This is why your digestive health is so important! Because, the more efficient and clean your digestive system is, the more energy your body has to clean out the toxins from your system.  When it's all gunked up (very scientific term) with poor eating habits and unhealthy weight, that can slow your whole digestive system down which will then create a compromised immune system.  When that happens, you are at a higher risk for illness and disease.

So if you are one of millions who has digestive issues such as irritable bowel, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, reflux, gas, and all that unpleasant stuff, then you're not alone. How do we fix it? How do I have a "good poop" you ask?

Well, first off know that there are 100s of over the counter products that you can take, but unfortunately they may or may not fix the situation. They do not go to the root cause, and can sometimes make things worse.

Remember... a healthy gut is an inside job.  You have got to create a beautiful environment for it with the right types of foods and nutrients to help your digestion process work the way it was intended.  Don't like fruit?  Can't stand your vegetables? I would urge you to get over that, pronto. We'll go into all that in my future posts on this subject. So stay tuned! I'll tell you a secret though:  it's really not that difficult to fix in the grand scheme of things.

Meanwhile.... Let's get a visual shall we?  Let's take a look at your poop in my next post: What's The Poop? Scoop No. 2.

Hugs and have a great.... day!

Cin ;)
Full-Body Fitness

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