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Holiday Season Digestion
Wellness
Published Wednesday Dec 19, 2018 by Lydia Cardona

5 Ways to Improve Your Digestion During the Holidays

Food
Nutrition

During the Christmas season, many of us indulge in rich, heavy foods that aren’t always tummy-friendly, leaving us feeling quite unwell and unable to enjoy the holidays to the full!



So, to help improve your digestion over the festive period, we’ve put together five simple, but effective tips to get you ready for the new year and feeling healthier than ever!




 

Yogis, rejoice!


Gentle yoga and stretching are not only relaxing and suitable for all levels of flexibility, but also great for improving digestion, easing bloating and helping with constipation. It can relieve tension and give your organs more space to relax. Not only does it have physical health benefits, but the moving meditation of yoga helps mentally too; allowing us to let go of the stresses of the holiday season, such as cooking for the in-laws, that can play havoc on our tummies!



Want to try a yoga position that promotes digestion? Nahid de Belgeonne from Good Vibes recommends the ‘Cat/Cow’ pose, which stretches muscles of the hips, back, and abdomen, whilst stimulating the organs and gastrointestinal tract. Nahid explains:



“Get on all fours with your wrists under your shoulders, knees under hips, begin to breathe in as you lift your breastbone to the front of the room. Have a sense of stretching the skin from the pubis to the throat, and then exhale as you round your spine up towards the ceiling; feel as if you are stretching the skin from the tailbone to the crown of the head. Do this a few times, gently stretching your tummy out.”

 




Book a massage
.

It’s healthy to put time aside to focus on yourself, so ask Santa to bring you a gift card for a professional massage this year! Massages not only feel great, but also improves our internal health. According to several studies, getting an abdominal massage can accelerate your digestion, ease abdominal pain, stop uncomfortable bloating and relieve constipation. Third helping of turkey, anyone?

 



Get a good night’s kip
.

Over the festive season, social calendars are packed and late nights are inevitable, so quality sleep is probably going to be a low priority. Your gut might feel the effects, but there are key sleeping positions that can help improve the gut’s happiness. Sleeping on the left side, for example, helps to prevent heartburn at night and improves digestion, as it encourages food to move along easily from the small intestine to the large.

 



Give acupuncture or acupressure a try.


Acupuncture may not seem like a solution to digestive health issues, but this ancient Chinese method can help to treat many digestive disorders including bacterial infections, heartburn, lactose intolerance, inflammatory conditions and more. It’s recommended that even those who are not phased by tiny needles should do their research on this before booking in a session though, to make sure its suitable for them. 



Want to try it out for yourself at home? The Life Centre shows you how:


“The acupoint Stomach 36 is often used to strengthen weak digestion and improve digestive disorders, ranging from constipation to diarrhea, gas, bloating, vomiting, and nausea. It can also boost the immune system and strengthen overall energy. To locate the acupoint, slightly bend your leg and place four fingers just below the kneecap. Begin with the index finger at the base of the kneecap. The point is where the little finger rests, on the outside aspect of the hard shinbone. Feel around for the tender spot.”

 



Meditate
.

Recent research in MINDBODY’s ‘Wellness Index’ found that downtime takes a backseat for many of us, with the nation getting fewer than nine hours of headspace a week! We can often let daily stresses (especially during the holiday season) build up, meaning that when we’re stressed or anxious our bodies resort to the ‘fight or flight’ response, which results in abdominal discomfort and temporary digestive problems. Finding a bit of time to clear your head could help. 

If you need encouragement, use the easy search filters in the MINDBODY app to find a studio near you offering guided meditation. Meditation doesn’t necessarily mean you must be sat cross-legged in a (yoga) studio though, it’s whatever makes you feel comfortable. This could be cooking, coloring or simply taking a five-minute break to focus on your inward and outward breathing. 

Lydia Cardona
Written by
Lydia Cardona
PR and Content Specialist, EMEA Marketing
About the author
A self-confessed exercise and sports junkie, Lydia made the transition from fashion to wellness, handling media relations in the U.K. In her spare time, you'll most likely find her hitting up a MINDBODY studio, shopping for houseplants, or walking the family Pomchi.
cauliflower mini pizzas healthy recipe
Wellness
Published Thursday Jan 23, 2020 by Erica Fowler

Cauliflower Pizza Crust (Mini Pizzas)

Recipes
Food

Made into easy, single-serving portions, these tasty cauliflower mini pizzas are healthy with a crispy crust. Whether you more of a marinara fan or feeling pesto for dinner, you've gotta try this low-carb (but high in taste) meal. 

Ingredients
  • ¼ teaspoon of pink salt
  • 3 tablespoons of vegan parmesan
  • Flax egg (1 tablespoon of flax meal and 4 tablespoons of water)
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon of arrowroot powder
  • 1 tablespoon of finely chopped basil plus more for topping
  • Homemade basil pesto or jar of marinara sauce
  • Sliced red bell pepper
  • Sliced mushrooms
  • Sliced red onion
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Olives
  • 1 head of cauliflower
Directions
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Wash and cut green leaves off of the cauliflower.
  • Place pieces of the cauliflower in the food processor and pulse until it becomes cauliflower rice.
  • Bring a pot to boil and add cauliflower rice and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Combine ingredients for your flax egg and set aside for five or so minutes to thicken.
  • Remove from heat and use a fine strainer to strain the rice and let cool.
  • Once cool, take a nut milk bag and strain all the water out of the rice (an important step to get it as dry as possible).
  • While the cauliflower rice is cooking, warm a skillet and add sliced onion, sliced bell pepper, and mushrooms. Sauté them enough to be cooked since they won’t be in the oven long.
  • Once the cauliflower is dry, place in a large mixing bowl and add in salt, vegan parmesan, flax egg, arrowroot flour, chopped basil, and dried oregano. Mix all ingredients into a dough.
  • Line parchment paper on a baking sheet and sprinkle gluten-free flour on the paper to avoid dough sticking.
  • Take a section of the dough and flatten it into a circle shape and line it on the baking tray, continue making little pizzas until you are out of dough.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 30 or so minutes and then flip the mini pizza crusts over and bake another 10 or so until firmer.
  • Add a light spread of marinara sauce, or homemade pesto, and veggies, vegan parmesan cheese, sliced cherry tomatoes, and rebake for another 10 minutes.
  • Take out and top with fresh basil. Enjoy!
Erica Fowler
Written by
Erica Fowler
Contributor | Holistic Nutritionist
About the author
With a heart-filled passion for holistic living and people, Erica spends most her time in Southern California along the salty coast when she’s not traveling. Focused on helping her clients find a natural balance, Erica encourages them to thrive through delicious, simple recipes and healthy habits.