A healthy digestive system is vital for the overall health of the body. If it is slow or in trouble, the rest of the body will be slow and in trouble too. This is because the digestive system is the area where the nutrients are absorbed and the majority of toxic wastes are dumped into. It is also the home for the immune system, which is responsible for keeping many serious diseases and common ailments at bay.
The Benefits of Exercise for a Healthy Digestive System
One of the ways to maintain a healthy digestive system is with exercise. Exercise can help in various ways, such as increase the metabolism and blood flow, as well as help to relax the body and mind, all of which can help to improve digestion.
One of the benefits of exercise is that it increases the metabolism. As a result, the food can move through the system much quicker, which then eases the load for the digestive system. If the food does not pass through fast enough, it can potentially rot and become toxic inside the tract. This is the last thing that you want as that will cause a buildup, which then reduces the amount of nutrients that get absorbed.
Another benefit of exercise is that it can help to massage the intestines. Tummy crunches, side twists and forward bends are great exercises that massage the intestines so that they can relax in order to release their contents.
Increased Blood Flow
The blood is responsible for absorbing nutrients from the digested food and distribute it throughout the body. Any type of exercise is known to increase this blood flow, which is helpful not only for the digestive system, but for the overall health of the body as well.
Strengthens the Muscles
This is a no-brainer, but exercise will help to tone up the muscles around the stomach and intestines. Strong muscles will help the food to move along more efficiently and overall make it easier on the system.
Relaxes the Mind and Body
Another major benefit of exercise is that it helps to relax the mind and body. This is absolutely crucial for healthy digestion as any type of stress, whether physical or mental, will interfere with the way the food is digested and absorbed into the body.
Stress puts the body into a fight or flight motion, which stops the production of digestive juices required to break down the foods. It also shuts off the blood supply to the digestive tract. All the body’s energy is then redirected to the stressed area or situation in order to help the body and mind to cope for the time being. As a result, the food can remain in the stomach for hours.
How to Exercise
There are a wide variety of exercises that one can take part in, however, it is important that each individual engages in an exercise that is suitable for him or her. Some might be able to go running for an hour, while others might only be able to walk for five to ten minutes. The key is to listen to body and exercise accordingly.