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“Go with your gut?” Here are some foods that aid digestion

Digestive problems affect many Irish people. Symptoms can vary and range from things like bloating, heartburn, constipation, nausea and pain.

Adding some key foods into your diet can greatly improve your digestive health. Here are 5 of the best:

Brown rice: Something as simple as swapping your white rice for the brown variety can help. Brown rice has more fibre – which aids the working of the gut by helping things move along down there and soften things up – and also contains more protein. Win/win.

Water: Yes that’s right, a glass of good old water can help you feel better in the bowels. By keeping yourself well-hydrated, you soften digesting foods and help them pass more easily through your system.

Fruit: Most fruits have high levels of fibre and have enzymes that help break down proteins. Pears, apples and bananas are especially good for digestive health. However, watch out – fibre is often contained in the skin of these fruits, so you may lose some digestive benefits by eating them whizzed up in smoothies.

Probiotics: Probiotics are “friendly bacteria” that occur naturally in the gut. They help with a large number of digestive ailments and can restore a bacterial balance in your intestines and stomach. You can take probiotics as a supplement, or in the form of live yoghurts.

Oats: Whether it’s porridge, muesli or oat bread, having an oat-filled breakfast is a great way of keeping your digestive system healthier. They have lots of fibre, but what you may not know is that the fibre in oats is more soluble. This means it creates a gel in your gut which slows food down. As a result, more vitamins, minerals and other nourishing elements are absorbed.

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