Chew, chew chew

Why is chewing properly so important?

Alison Cullen

27 February 2015

The common complaints

Hands up anyone who never, ever has the slightest complaint about anything that happens from their gullet to their gut? Digestive bliss, from start to finish; never a grumble or a rumble from the insides; smiley happy tummy at all times? Not many, that’s for sure.

Digestive complaints must be one of the most common sets of ailments in the country – choose from this list to get a realistic picture of many people’s daily sufferings…

The pity of all this is that it is relatively easy to keep things in order. Follow these simple steps and find out how pleasant it is to be on friendly terms with your insides. Those with specific problems should read on for further advice.

Sit down to eat your food

I may just have this instruction tattooed on my forehead, as I have to say it to such a large number of people. It’s sometimes hard to believe that it’s so difficult to make people take life a little easier… The plain fact is that your body finds it hard to run around and digest at the same time. Sit down and relax, and give yourself five minutes once you’ve finished eating before you jump up and start attacking the day again. That way your digestive system can concentrate on the food you’re hoping to digest, and you’re less likely to suffer from a whole raft of the symptoms outlined above.


You’ve no idea how few people actually do more than close their teeth a couple of times around a mouthful of food before gulping it down – it barely touches the sides before it lands in the unsuspecting stomach. Chewing is an act that not only breaks your meal down to a manageable size, but also alerts the stomach to the imminent delivery of food. If you don’t chew, your stomach won’t have produced digestive enzymes in preparation for the food’s arrival, heralding chaos and confusion and a hefty dose of acid indigestion.

You should aim to chew each mouthful around 20 times!

So over to you – it’s free, it’s easy and it will vastly improve your life, honestly: CHEW!


Yes, it may not be the most delightful subject in the world, but what comes out is just as important as what goes in. Why? Because believe me, the waste products from the digestive process don’t just evaporate inside you – they need to leave the body via the designated exit route…

So if nothing is coming out then these waste products are lying around inside your intestines, festering and fermenting, causing wind, bloating, belching and general misery.

If you are eating three meals a day then it is not unreasonable to expect a daily bowel movement.


If you are permanently stressed, this will affect your digestive powers and irritate the gut, so take a combination extract containing Passiflora and a magnesium supplement (e.g. Salus Haus liquid magnesium) to calm things down.

Use Tormentil to reduce the irritation in the bowel. This remedy works very well for diarrhoea, but don’t use it if there is constipation present as well.

Longstanding constipation causes diarrhoea so if you suffer from alternating constipation and diarrhoea, treat the constipation first.


Drink plenty of water. This doesn’t mean coffee and tea, as they can make things worse. Plain water, hot or cold and drink it well away from your meals so that you don’t dilute your digestive juices.

If you need a real blast to get things moving, use a strong laxative containing Linseed, Senna and Frangula. Use a low dose to start with and only for a short time. If the problem persists, consult a healthcare professional.


Many people are told that they have an overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria in their intestines, causing digestive problems. In reality, it is often poor digestion that allows Candida (a perfectly normal resident in the gut) to get above itself and start rampaging about.


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  • Sharon Todd's photo avatar
    Sharon Todd — 27.06.2018 10:14
    Hi. Ive read about A Vogal on and off for years. He seemed a lovely man! Now I need help as I have h pylori. Asthma and allergies up to my ears Aspergillious and foods such as Dairy Sulphites Sugars! Dr wants to give me more antibiotics as the 2 x lots I had did not get rid of the h.p due to a bad reaction to one of the abtcs. My ige is 1500/2000. Kindest regards sharon


    • Ali's photo avatar
      Ali — 28.06.2018 07:31
      Hi Sharon, H. pylori can only really 'bed in' to the stomach wall when the stomach is not becoming acidic enough when you're eating. This in turn can be caused by stress, rushed eating, drinking liquids with food, and many other factors. Asthmatics often have weak stomach secretions, so you may have inherited a tendency this way too. As you now have the complications of an adverse reaction to antibiotics I'd suggest that you contact a nutritional practitioner locally, as they can make you a personalised programme and monitor you through it. If you go to you will find your nearest practitioners. Best Wishes, Ali


  • Val's photo avatar
    Val — 27.11.2017 15:55
    I have had tests for gallstones, and pancreatitis both were clear been avoiding stuff from the blood test but still keep getting a pain under the right ribs.any ideas please.


    • Ali's photo avatar
      Ali — 30.11.2017 13:11
      Hi Val, This can be due to a sluggish bowel, whereby waste matter gets stuck in the bend (called the hepatic flexure) in the large intestine around the area under the ribcage on the right hand side. If your bowel moves less than twice daily then this would be the area to focus on first. Best Wishes, Ali


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