It’s entirely normal to get off track from time to time. And everyone does because — surprise! — no one is perfect. The challenge, though, comes when you want to preset that proverbial reset button because we often go overboard, forcing ourselves into full-on cleanses that our bodies ultimately reject.
So instead of traveling down this uncomfortable (and, often times, unsuccessful) path, consider the simple daily rituals below. Implement them for a brief period of time just to get yourself back on track, but then, if you find that they’re really working for you, add them to your typical routine for consistent energy and a happy digestive system.
1. Have a cup of hot lemon water in the morning
Most people don’t realize it, but lemons are all-stars for the digestive tract. They are extremely detoxifying and help to keep the body’s pH in balance. While they’re a citrus fruit, lemons actually have an alkalizing effect on acid in the stomach, helping to calm down things like acid reflux flare-ups. Starting the day off with a hot cup of lemon water wakes up your digestive system and helps to reset it before asking it to process everything else you will consume throughout the day.
2. Eat fresh, raw fruits or vegetables before having a meal
Starting off a meal or your day with some raw fruits or vegetables is a great way to kick-start your digestion. It gets the wheels turning and allows your body to get ready to digest the more complex things that you will consume later on. Also, the fiber helps to keep you a bit fuller so that you don’t overeat. This ritual can be as simple as eating a few carrot sticks or a small salad before your typical meal or having an apple as an afternoon pick-me-up before you start to crash. They are refreshing, delicious and make you feel clean from the inside out.
3. Take a daily probiotic supplement
Probiotics help to balance out the good bacteria in your gut and keep your digestive system happy. There are tons of probiotic supplement options to choose from, so read up on what will work best for your body. It’s such a simple thing to add to your daily routine that makes such a big difference, so why not start now? We also like eating probiotic-rich foods like kimchi and kefir to snag some the natural way.
4. Take a shot of apple cider vinegar
Whoever came up with the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away,” was onto something. This simple, overlooked fruit is a powerful player in digestive health. And apple cider vinegar is an internal superhero in itself. Go for the organic, unfiltered kind like Bragg’s, and use it as a tool to calm stomach acid or heartburn and kill bacteria in the body that can leave you feeling icky and your skin looking dull. Take one tablespoon straight or dissolve it in a little water to subdue the burn. (And always be mindful of your tooth enamel if you prefer it in shot form!) Start your day off with this ritual or do it whenever you’re feeling like you need a reboot.
5. Keep ginger candy handy
Ginger chews can come to your rescue if you’re feeling nauseous or your stomach is upset. Ginger has tons of health benefits, especially for the stomach, but no one really wants to carry around a fresh knob of the aromatic root in their bag everywhere they go, so snag some ginger candies instead. They’re perfect in a pinch when you’re out and about and your digestive system isn’t happy with you. Pop one for almost instant relief. Seriously, ginger candies can work tiny miracles when you need them most.