I Am Back!

Kristi and babyAfter a long hiatus from blogging, I am back! I took some time off during my pregnancy and maternity leave to take time to rest and care for my baby. Today, is my last day of maternity leave and I am ready to get back into the swing of things again. I have thoroughly enjoyed these past few months off and very thankful for all the time I was able to spend with my new baby girl, Sonoma. She truly is a wonderful blessing that makes me smile multiple times a day.

It is time to switch things up! I have decided to make a few changes to how I will be blogging going forward. In the past, I was creating weekly dinner menus with shopping lists, but that took up a lot of time each week. I am not sure it was the best use of my time or goal of this blog. I want this blog to be a place for people to learn about nutrition, especially as it relates to gut health, as well as learn how easy it is to live paleo-ish/real food lifestyle. I will still post weekly links to recipes (and possibly create a few of my own), but also provide more education then I did in the past.

Now, let’s dive into a little information about the digestion process. Let’s start from the beginning, the brain. I know, you are thinking, “What? Digestion starts in the brain? She must be crazy.” It is true though. Ever heard of the term rest and digest? When our body is in the parasympathetic state (rest and digest) we are able to digest our food because the brain is able to direct blood flow to the digestive system. It is also able to signal the salivary glands to start the increase of digestive juices and the stomach to start increasing gastric juices, all needed to breakdown food. The body flips to the sympathetic state when we are responding to stress, even good stress like exercise. During this state, the brain diverts attention from digestion to respond to the stressful stimuli. This is why it is important to eat when we are not stressed. Also, the reason an upset stomach can occur during high stress times. More to come in future posts about the entire digestion process, but below are some simple tips to start improving your digestion now.

5 Tips for Improving Digestion

  1. Sit down to eat – never eat standing up
  2. Take a few breaths
  3. Say a prayer or thanks before eating
  4. Chew your food. Most people only partly chew their food, but really take the time to chew and taste your food
  5. Slow down by putting your fork down between bites and taking a five minute break in the middle.

With all of that being said, I will leave you with the link to the recipe I am making tonight, 5 ingredient pizza spaghetti pie from PaleOMG. It is one of my family’s favorite meals. I love it because it makes several servings that are great to serve as leftovers. I can make it for dinner for us and have it a couple of times for lunch too.

Thanks for stopping by the blog today! Be sure to check back next week to learn more about the digestion process and ways to improve it. Have a wonderful week!

~Eat well, be well

Resource:  Sanfilipo, D. (2012). Practical Paleo: A customized approach to health and a whole-food lifestyle. Las Vegas:Victory Belt Publishing, Inc.