Digestion is a process where the body breaks down food into smaller particles to absorb them into the bloodstream. Complete digestion of food takes anywhere between 24 to 72 hours and depends on several factors, including the type of food eaten and the presence of digestive issues. This article looks at the digestive process and potential digestive problems and recommends ways to improve digestion. In many cases, the food moves through the stomach and small intestine within 6 to 8 hours. It then passes to the large intestine (colon). However, the exact time varies and depends on factors such as: Amount and type of food eaten: Protein-rich foods and fatty foods, such as meat and fish, can take longer to digest than high-fiber foods, such as fruits and vegetables. Sweets, such as candy, crackers, and pastries, are among the fastest foods digested. Gender: A 1980s study found that the transit time through the large intestine alone was 47 hours for women and just 33 hours for men. The … [Read more...] about How long does digestion take? Tips for better digestion
Diverticulitis inflammatory bowel disease
Vaginal gas occurs when air becomes trapped in the vagina. It is a common condition and is not usually associated with any health risks. In rare cases, however, it can be a sign of more serious conditions that require medical treatment, such as vaginal fistulas, which are caused by an abnormal connection between two organs. There is usually some air in the vagina, but vaginal gas may occur when larger pockets or bubbles become stuck and slowly squeak out, or when the air is released suddenly. Vaginal gas usually causes a noticeable sound as the trapped air vibrates through the vaginal canal. This may sound similar to flatulence. Anytime something is inserted into the vagina, air can enter and become trapped inside. In most cases, vaginal gas is not considered a health risk. Some common natural causes of vaginal gas include: Pelvic floor dysfunctions or conditions There is very little research on vaginal gas, probably because it is not harmful and may only cause occasional … [Read more...] about Vaginal gas: Common causes and prevention
Poop can turn green for a number of reasons, these include eating a lot of high-chlorophyll plants, like spinach or kale, taking a course of antibiotics, or a bacterial infection. Although rarely a cause for concern, changes in poop color should be explored. Poop is generally brown, but, at times, it can turn green, red, black, yellow, or anything in between. Many of these color changes do not signal a medical condition, but some can be a sign of something more serious. This article discusses poop color, what it means, and when to speak with a doctor. What makes poop green? Green stool is usually the result of a high quantity of leafy, green vegetables in someone's diet. Specifically, it is the chlorophyll in the plant that produces the green color. Alternatively, children might have green stool after attending a birthday party where they ate artificially colored frosting. Diet-based reasons for green poop are by far the most common, but there are others; people who do not … [Read more...] about Why is my poop green? Stool colors explained
Beet greens and beets are both excellent in salads or smoothies. Roasting beets with olive oil and salt makes for a tasty side dish. Beets also make a delicious and rich Russian soup called borscht. Juicing is also an easy way to get a quick dose of healthy beet power. I enjoy using beets for a variety of reasons. For starters, there are several varieties of beets with different sizes, shapes, and colors. There is the classic dark red beet, which has a deep color without any rings or streaks. Types of red beet include Detroit Dark Red, Crosby Egyptian, and Crapaudine. Other popular beet types include the mild tasting golden or yellow beets. Some farmers will grow varieties such as Golden Detroit, Burpee’s Golden, and Golden. There are also striped beets with the varieties Bassano or Chioggia beets. There are also cylindrical shaped Danish heirloom beets, which are visually appealing. Beets are full of health benefits. For example, beets are high in immune-boosting vitamin C … [Read more...] about Is It Blood or Just Beets? How to Tell If the Blood in Your Stool Is a Problem
Seeing blood, whether bright red or black, in your stool or on the toilet paper after wiping can be alarming but is not always something to be worried about. On the other hand, there are some definite causes of blood in the stool that warrant a doctor’s attention. Understanding the difference between a harmless and potentially harmful bloody movement requires a bit of explanation about what the blood in stool causes are. Generically speaking, almost anything that causes a bleed at some point along the gastrointestinal tract can result in blood in stool. Blood does not get re-absorbed by the body once it enters the intestinal tract so there is really only one way for it to go. 1. Diverticula 2. ConstipationConstipation also increases the likelihood of anal fissures, hemorrhoids, and some forms of bowel obstruction. 3. Anal Fissureanal fissure looks like. These are painful but harmless injuries that can be brought on by regular straining when trying to pass a stool. 4. … [Read more...] about What Causes Blood in Stool?
Credit: iStock.com/GeorgeRudy Pain in the middle of the stomach, or mid-abdominal pain, can have many possible causes, which range from the easily treated to more serious medical conditions. Since the region is home to a number of organs, constipation, ulcers, gallstones, appendicitis, and diverticulitis are just some of the ailments that can cause abdominal pain. In this article, we’ll not only explain the causes of mid-abdominal pain, but we’ll also look at the anatomy of the abdomen, how the location of the pain can be described, and what that means for the cause of the pain. We’ll also discuss various home remedies that may be able to soothe your pain and when you should go to see a doctor. In this article: Anatomy of Abdomen What Are the Different Ways to Describe Pain in Your Abdomen? Causes of Pain in Mid-Abdomen Home Remedies to Ease Mild Pain in Middle of the Stomach When to See a Doctor Pain in the Middle of the Stomach Should Be a Concern When … [Read more...] about Pain in the Middle of the Stomach: Possible Causes, Types, and Remedies
The intestines are the waste disposal and water reabsorption centre for the body. Optimal digestive health depends on waste and toxins continually moving out through the bowels. This waste includes not only food, but also hormones and cells the body no longer requires. Digestion and immune health Providing your digestive system with healthy food and good microbes will enhance your ability to properly digest all the foods you eat. Further, good bowel habits can help to prevent many common bowel conditions and keep other body systems working properly. The intestinal lining is protected by a large part of the immune system called the gut-associated lymphoid tissue. A fine balance exists between the bacteria found in the bowels and the ability of the intestines to defend against disease. Prebiotics such as inulin and fructooligosaccharides (found in bananas, leeks, garlic, and onions) increase the effectiveness of the microbes in the intestines, giving a natural boost to your immune … [Read more...] about Staying Regular
Dr. Larry Goldenberg is a man on a mission: to add 10 quality years to men’s lives. The co-director of the Men’s Health Initiative of BC (aboutmen.ca) points out some startling facts: all over the world, men die on average four to five years earlier than women. Furthermore, the outlook for several conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, is worse for men than women. Yet it’s likely you’ve had to drag a man in your life—your spouse, dad, adult son, brother, or lifelong friend—to the doctor. Although there’s no hard evidence to support the popular notion that men experiencing unusual symptoms are reluctant to seek medical advice, there’s no denying the stereotype. “Many 40-year-old men are more interested in looking after their cars than their bodies,” says Goldenberg. But symptoms can be warning signs of serious illnesses and shouldn’t be ignored. 1. Chest pain Heart disease is the leading killer of men. … [Read more...] about Men’s Health Matters
Diverticulitis is another of the “civilized diseases.” While 30 percent of Americans suffer from the discomfort of diverticular disease, it is extremely rare in undeveloped nations living on a diet of unrefined foods and not subjected to the SAD (Standard American Diet). It has become increasingly obvious that out low-fiber diet of highly refined foods is the major cause of diverticulitis and colon cancer. For diverticulitis to occur, the neck of the diverticulum becomes blocked by swelling or doo doo, bringing about bacterial invasion. From this an abscess can form, spasm can occur, resulting in intestinal destruction. This in itself may require surgery. If perforation of the abscess occurs it leads to peritonitis, which is inflammation of the inner walls of the abdomen covering the abdominal organs, and is a severe surgical emergency. The healing of any of these complications can result in fibrosis and narrowing of the colon, which may require surgery down the … [Read more...] about Treating Diverticulitis
FRIENDLY FIRE OR SILENT KILLER? What do you think of when you hear the work” inflammation”? If you are like most people you will recall a time when you sprained an ankle or strained a muscle. You may have experienced swelling and pain and were told by your doctor or therapist to take an anti-inflammatory medication, use ice and elevation. This is a relatively common, and self-limiting reaction that eventually leads to healing. Inflammation is the body’s natural, normal defensive response to a tissue injury. A typical inflammatory response has recognizable hallmark characteristics of redness, heat, swelling and pain. While the mechanisms are a bit complex, It is important to understand the basic processes involved, or the cascade of events that occur when the body is in this state we term “inflammation”. I will simplify the explanation with just some essential facts. The inflammatory response is the body’s elaborate … [Read more...] about Inflammation and Disease: Friendly Fire or Silent Killer? Taking back control.