Digestive health affects everyday life and is a key indicator of overall wellness. For those who have even relatively minor digestive problems, both day and night can be dictated by the discomfort and inconvenience of these issues. Difficulties with digestion also have surprisingly far-reaching effects; in fact, approximately 80% of the body's immune system is located in the gastrointestinal tract (GI) tract, making healthy bowels crucial for overall well-being.**
Research indicates that roughly 60 to 70 million Americans have digestive problems, including constipation, indigestion and irritable bowel issues. A well-balanced diet that includes plenty of fiber can promote digestive health. The American Dietetic Association (ADA) suggests getting 25 to 30 grams of daily fiber, but the average American tends to get only 11 grams per day. Foods with high levels of dietary fiber include whole-grain products, vegetables, fruits, nuts and beans.**
While doctors and scientists have developed numerous methods of dealing with these issues, there is a wide array of natural digestive health supplements available that can support gastrointestinal tract wellness gently and effectively. Certain aspects of digestive health that are addressed by specific nutritional supplements include:**
Digestive Enzymes: Papaya, bromelain, pancreatin, amylase, cellulose, lipase, pepsin. These important enzymes help to break down food in the digestive tract so that the body can effectively absorb nutrients.**
Fiber: Psyllium, konjac (glucomannan), chitosan, apple pectin. Dietary fiber is essential to optimal health and aids in overall digestion, as well as cardiovascular wellness, while also creating a sensation of fullness that helps with weight management.**
Probiotics: Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus salivarius, Bifidobacterium bifidum. Probiotics are forms of bacteria, notably Lactobacillus acidophilus, that encourage digestive health, including regular bowel movements.**
Colon Cleansing: Goldenseal, cascara sagrada, buckthorn root, aloe vera, gentian root. The process of colon cleansing focuses on clearing toxins and other non-beneficial matter from the intestinal tract, often with fiber or detoxifying herbs, which may aid digestion and overall wellness.**
Natural Laxatives: Prune, senna, cascara, licorice root, uva ursi. Gentle laxatives from natural sources can ease constipation and assist in promoting consistent bowel movements, benefiting overall healthy digestion.**
Digestive Aids: Charcoal, betaine HCl, peppermint, ginger. These natural compounds and herbs can promote digestive comfort, dispel gas, relieve gastric distress and nausea, and ease bloating while optimizing regular digestion.**
Digestive Health Products
Digestive health supplements are sold in a variety of forms, most commonly as capsules, tablets, softgels or powders. Digestive health products are also sometimes presented as tea.**
Digestive Health Supplement Directions for Use
It is recommended that you consult with your health care professional prior to taking digestive health supplements or starting any regular supplement regimen. There is no general digestive health supplements dosage; see individual digestive health supplements for their recommended usage.**
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**These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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