Desserts and digestion

Last night I went  out with my husband for a social engagement. Generally speaking I never have a dessert straight after my meal, it makes me feel bloated and I can feel that is slows down my digestion. That is exactly what happened last night ! What’s wrong with that you might think ? We have different enzymes produced according to what we eat, the sugar lactose is digested by lactase, protein by protease and so forth.

When we eat a meal containing protein, fats and/carbs, they don’t immediately go to the intestines but remain in the stomach for several hours so the enzymes can get to work. This allows time for the  breakdown of nutrients to begin taking place, after this, the food then passes on to the intestines for further digestion.  The nature of sugar however, does not require it to stay in the stomach but it instead passes straight through to the intestines, where the body digests it. This is where  things get tricky and create problems. If sweet foods are eaten right after a meal, this will mean that instead of passing straight through the stomach, the sugar remains in the stomach, mixing with the proteins, fats and carbs, creating fermentation and gas, slowing down digestion and affecting absorption of nutrients in the intestines and you end of feeling bloated and uncomfortable ! I’ve been there too !

I’m not saying to never eat a dessert again but if you are looking to avoid that bloating feeling, you might want to think about waiting for an hour or two before indulging in that sweet treat. Better yet, eat it in between meals, when the stomach is empty and you can digest it properly.

For more information or to schedule your appointment with Susan Alsembach, RHN, visit www.ezcapespa.com

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