Stress and Digestion: Does your belly feel particularly off kilter this week?

Jul 01, 2022

Does your belly feel particularly off kilter this week? Do you know that STRESS significantly impairs DIGESTION? With the barrage of brutality coming down from the Supreme Court this week, many of us feel utterly depleted. Let's talk about how trauma of this sort harms our digestive capacity.

Stress can come in many forms from big political horrors, to troubled relationships, lack of sleep, food sensitivities, chronic pain and more.

Stress does 2 main things to our digestion.

1. It literally disrupts the microbiome - the living ecosystem within our guts that we need to digest food, make nutrients, make neurotransmitters, feel energetic, stabilize weight.

2. It prevents the brain from signaling the digestive organs to release their digestive juices (hydrochloric acid from the stomach, bile from the liver/gallbladder, pancreatic amylase from the pancreas).

This results in so many things feeling OFF in our bodies. We might feel like an out of body experience. We might feel incredibly overwhelmed or anxious or depressed. We might feel nauseous or constipated. ... to name just a few symptoms you may be experiencing.

If it goes on too long, we will become more malnourished, more depleted as our food is not digesting , not able to nourish us, heal us and keep us going.

Stress, by way of breaking the digestive system, can spiral into autoimmune conditions and other medical conditions.

We are organisms that function so much better when we exist in a functioning, caring, safe society. When society fails us, our bodies have a tendency to break down too.

Though many of us feel an extreme urgency to be extra vigilant right now on the socio-political front, and we do need to be, I also recommend taking extra measures to nurture your digestion. Be calm when you eat. Chew your food thoroughly. Eat fermented foods. Eat lots of fiber. Eat a balanced, whole foods diet with plenty of diversity!

The digestive system (like a functioning society) thrives when we embrace and celebrate diversity.

Of course, if you need personalized support with your digestion through these stressful times, I'm here for you. xo