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REVENGE OF THE TURKEY DINNER

Guest Writer - Author  | 
November 23, 2015
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How can you avoid the inevitable post-dinner indigestion this Thanksgiving?

Ah, Thanksgiving – the one glutinous, glorious day when the nation gives itself collective carte blanche to bib-up, hunker down, and seriously overindulge. All the while knowing what is coming down the pike: indigestion, heartburn, bloating, belching and maybe a few tears.

So what can you do to avoid the unpleasantness?

THE DIGESTION DILEMA

While over-sipping is rarely a great idea, imbibing these delicious potables (in moderation) may actually aide digestion, and let’s face it….you’re going to be drinking anyway.

RED WINE:

Certain harsh compounds, with ugly sounding names (hydroperoxides or LOOH, malonaldehydes or MDA) are often found in fried, or junky, processed foods (aka: candied yams, pecan pie, green bean casserole, canned cranberry “gel”). Your body doesn’t like them, and they can impede proper digestion.

Studies indicate that washing down such delicious no-nos with red wine can actually help neutralize these nasty compounds by up to 70 percent, thereby aiding digestion.

And while dark turkey meat ideally is neither processed or fried (well, unless you deep-fry your bird), a 2008 study (in The FASEB Journal), found the meat may elevate MDA levels, but not when paired with a glass of cabernet sauvignon, or a shiraz!

AMARI:

It’s unlikely this Italian answer to a proper digestive (cousin to the aperitif) tops your Thanksgiving day liquor store list, but those well-fed Italians believe good digestion is integral to health and happiness, and this bitter, sometimes sweet after dinner option is their traditional elixir of choice.

Made from a variety of roots, herbs and spices, and sometimes blended with syrup, this category of alcohol has been helping our well-fed brethren of the boot digest their scrumptious osso bucco and buffalo mozzarella for ages. You don’t have to be in Rome to follow their time-tested lead.

WATER:

Don’t drink too much of it while you’re eating. Relegate yourself to a small glass with dinner and sip it.

Water dilutes your stomach acids and enzymes, making digestion that much harder. Your body then has to produce MORE stomach acid to compensate – leading to heartburn and general indigestion.

EAT SLOWLY:

We know the routine. We sit down and devour like piggies at the trough, rarely coming up for air. This is a meal we look forward to all year. The anticipation is almost unbearable. This is part of the digestion dilemma…too much food too fast. Your body can’t keep up. In order to digest properly, your body has to sense what you’re eating and release the appropriate enzymes to help break down the food in your stomach. When you inhale your food, it gets confused and just throws the whole enzyme cabinet at you. This leads to indigestion.

Try chewing your food slowly. Actually tasting the flavors instead of winning the clean plate club medallion could help you feel better and enjoy your food. And if any meal is to be enjoyed, it’s this one–somebody (perhaps it was you) worked hard to make this meal special. Chewing slowly will ensure that the right enzymes will get released to properly digest your food, and you’ll cut calories in the process too.  People who eat slowly consume less calories because they are more aware of their “full” feeling compared to those who shovel it in and stop just short of vomiting.

 

*Article written by Logan Orlando

 

 

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