Resting for Better Digestion

June 2, 2014
Resting for Better Digestion Barbar Sinclair

Resting for 15-20 minutes after a meal is a great practice that Ayurveda encourages.

Resting for Better Digestion

Approximately 60% of our daily energy goes towards digestion. If we rest for a bit after eating, our body can perform this important function more efficiently – rather than sending the energy elsewhere – to the brain and other organs needed to do things like read, write, watch TV or exercise.

Did your mother always tell you not to go swimming after eating? Mine did – and for years I thought I would get a cramp and drown if I went swimming too soon after a meal. My over-reaction created more anxiety in an already anxious child. But Mom was definitely onto something.

John Immel of Joyful Belly Ayurveda says:

“After eating, blood rushes to the stomach to supply stomach glands with fluids. The food is mixed with acids and slowly turns into a sauce. About fifteen minutes after eating, the food is fully hydrated and blood flow to the stomach relaxes somewhat. To ensure a proper supply of blood, rest at least fifteen minutes after eating.”

I have found this simple practice of resting for a few minutes after eating remarkably effective. Being quiet, doing some gentle breathing and avoiding multi-tasking definitely helps my digestion. I’m not saying it’s easy to drop those habits we get used to doing during and after meals – but it’s certainly something to strive for.

If you are somewhere you can rest on your left side for a bit – this helps the digestive process even more.

And if you’re someone suffering with serious digestive issues, I highly recommend giving this tip a try.

No more running down the street eating pizza or a bagel, New Yorkers! You don’t need that added stress!

Much love,
Barbara

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