The part of you that digests and processed your food is 26 feet long. It is an intricate tube that provides you with the fuel to get about your day with efficiency and vitality. Of course, your energy levels and your feelings of well-being are dependant a great deal on what you put into your mouth and how quickly it transits your body. That transit time is made efficient by the amount of fiber you eat. If you want to see how long it takes for your digestive system to process and evacuate eat some beets.

Ideally foods should enter your mouth and exit the other end within 18 to 24 hours. Foods that sit in your system longer than that tend to lose more water and get more solid in your system, resulting in what is called constipation. You body needs help to move food stuffs efficiently through your digestive tract. Some of these hardened feces can stick to the sides of the intestinal walls creating all kinds of problems. Fiber is like a scouring brush that helps remove matter that is stuck on the walls of the intestines and pushes it to the other end.

Fiber is what we eat that remains close to its original state by the time it reaches the colon. Unlike cows and animals that have an enzyme for breaking down fiber, we humans do not, so the fiber remains undigested and contributes to colon health. Vegetables and grains contain lots of fiber.

As our food has become more and more sophisticated, we find so many foods with very little fiber. We have become a society of fast and convenience foods made with white bread and lots of meat. Vegetables may run across the plate once in a while, but not enough to provide enough fiber to keep constipation at bay. The invention of the roller mill in 1870, separated the parts of the wheat grains to make baked goods more refined. The coarse parts of the grain were used for animal feed so we lost the roughage needed to keep colons healthy. This probably explains the sky rocketing colon cancer rates we have today. There are too many toxic substances hanging around the intestines for far too long.

There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble, but both allow the digesting matter to hold more water so that the feces stay soft and move more comfortably through the digestive tract. Insoluble fiber is like the scouring brush, pushing everything towards the exit point. Soluble fiber, on the other hand absorbs toxins and extra cholesterol taking it all though the tract to be eliminated.

Obviously, soft bowel movements are more comfortable to pass and cause less strain on the body. Constipation can cause things like bad breath, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, body odor, depression, fatigue, indigestion, gas, bloating, heart burn, and even insomnia.

Aside from lack of fiber, constipation can be caused by dehydration of the large intestine. To add more fiber to the diet is a wise move, as is drinking more water. Cerra Water is the best since it is more hydrating or wetting than the regular tap or bottled waters. Psyllium which is a popular fiber found in a lot of over-the-counter preparations actually absorbs up to 40 times its weight in water, which can add to dehydration woes.

Flax seed is a much better alternative and can be ground fresh in a coffee grinder. A good combination is to grind one tablespoonful of fresh flax seed and mix it with the juice of half a lemon and 16 ounces of alkaline ionized water and drink it before breakfast. Not only is the lemon awesome for your liver, you are alkalizing your body and scrubbing your bowel all at the same time. Remember that a clean house is a healthy house, especially when the pipes aren’t plugged.

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