The last two weeks, we have discussed the colors with the associated chakra (which are wheels of energy in the body).The color Yellow is related to the third chakra, which is known as the solar plexus. This chakra is right below the rib cage and above the navel. It is associated with the stomach, small intestine, pancreas, liver, and spleen. This is the chakra representing the digestive system or as known in Ayurveda, as the “fire.”

This “fire” is associated with digestive health, strength, and assimilation. The digestive system is vital in maintaining a healthy immune system and physical body. Did you know that about 80-85% of our immune system resides within our gastrointestinal tract? The digestive system is the root to many autoimmune diseases and other illnesses, which is why it is so important to keep this system healthy and balanced. The health of the digestive system is at the core of optimum and vibrant health.

When our digestive system or “fire” is functioning healthfully, we will have robust digestive capabilities. Individuals that have a healthy “fire” can eat about anything and feel energized afterwards. The pancreas is healthy, which means that carbohydrates are used for sustenance rather than a quick fix. The blood sugar also remains stable throughout the day. There are enough naturally produced digestive enzymes to break down food for digestion and proper assimilation. These individuals get inspired by setting goals and do not give up easily. They also have a strong sense of purpose.

There is also something known as a weak or underactive “fire.” Someone with a weak “fire” may have the following symptoms; prefers warm foods over cold foods, avoids cold drinks, lacks appetite, craves spicy foods, snack throughout the day because of unbalanced blood sugar levels, gets tired after eating, sluggish liver, poor detoxification capabilities, constipation, undigested food in stool, lack of initiative, poor self-esteem, victim mentality, feeling like life is unfair, gives up easily, and fear of rejection.

Lastly, there are those with overactive digestion or “fire.” These symptoms include; ulcers, heartburn or esophageal reflux, acidic stomach, GERD (gastro esophageal reflux disorder), belching, feels hot or flushed after eating, tendency to binge on sweets, stress eater, multitasks while eating, eating on the run, need to be in control or in charge, workaholic, tightly wound, unhealthy high expectations of self and others, over thinking, and overly assertive.

Since (Yellow) and the Solar Plexus Chakra represent the digestive system and liver, listed below are some very easy and effective ways to maintain health and balance in these systems. Please read this article thoroughly to decipher which realm of digestive issues you are dealing with. Try one or more of the suggestions in the category which fits your digestive description, to create balance and digestive health.

 Effective Ways to Enhance an Underactive “Fire “/Digestive System and Proper Liver Flow

1. Drink very little liquids at mealtimes- you should drink the majority of your fluid intake throughout the day, between meals

You should try to limit water and other beverages to no more than 4-6 ounces at meals- drinking more than this amount can dilute your naturally occurring digestive enzymes that you need to digest your food

2. Take 1-2 TBSP. of Raw Unfiltered Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar or Super Tonic (see recipe from the blog: http://beautifulhealingjourney.com/recipes/super-tonic-master-tonic ) with your meals, you may add it to 1 ounce of water and drink it or add in into your salad dressing. The Apple Cider Vinegar supports in hydrochloric acid production (which is usually low in those with a weak “fire”) and assists in breaking down and digesting food

3. Take Digestive Enzymes with Betaine Hydrochloride -1 or 2 with each meal My favorite brand:

https://www.amazon.com/Pure-Encapsulations-Digestive-Comprehensive-Vegetarian/dp/B00GSP4R6O/ref=sr_1_4_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1512683137&sr=8-4&keywords=pure+digestive+enzymes+ultra+with+betaine+hcl

4. Eat a golf ball size amount of raw fermented veggies with each meal for digestive support and for healthy flora. Here is a link to one of my favorite brands. https://www.wisechoicemarket.com/organic-raw-fermented-vegetables

5. Chew your food thoroughly. Did you know that our digestion starts in our mouth? There is a famous saying that says it best, “Drink your solids and chew your liquids.” This means that when you swallow; make sure that chewed bite of food is a liquid consistency. This is also saying that we should taste and swish around our liquids before we swallow them. This activates our taste buds, which stimulates the digestive system to get ready for the breakdown and assimilation of food.

6. Eat your largest meal at lunch. This is typically when our digestive strength is at its peak. Eat small meals, rather than large ones for those with a weak digestive fire. If you eat too large of a meal, it can overload the fire and put it out.

Eat until your stomach feels ¾ full and leave ¼ of the rest of the space for the digestive juices to mix with the undigested food. This will enhance digestion.

7. Try to eat your last meal of the day at least 3 hours before going to bed. Do not go to bed on a full stomach!

Try to eat your evening meal no later than 6-6:30 pm.

8. Take Digestive Bitters to enhance digestion. Digestive Bitters stimulate the digestive process and assists in the utilization of nutrients. They also purify the bloodstream, enhance bile flow, and stimulate liver detoxification.

*Check out this resource for a good digestive bitter tonic:

 https://www.amazon.com/Flora-Swedish-Bitters-Non-Alcohol-3-40-Ounce/dp/B000BD1EII/ref=sr_1_12_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1512684878&sr=8-12&keywords=digestive+bitters

9. Use herbs and spices with meals and cooking to enhance digestive support. These could include ginger, cayenne, turmeric, cumin, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, black pepper, fennel, and fenugreek.

*Recipe- 4-6 ounces hot water

Add 1-2 TBSP. grated fresh ginger root, 1/8 tsp. black pepper, and the juice of 1 lemon- let steep for 15-20 minutes- may strain if desired. Drink this with meals to enhance digestion and immunity!

10. Check out the recipes and videos for the Lemon Water and Red Beet dish on this blog. Both of these recipes will enhance proper liver health and drainage.

http://beautifulhealingjourney.com/recipes/red-beet-salad

http://beautifulhealingjourney.com/recipes/lemon-water

http://beautifulhealingjourney.com/updates/2

11. Agni Sara Yoga exercise- this yoga pose is one of the most powerful ways to strengthen your digestive fire! Check out this informational resource for more information:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pS38jNS1U7E

 

Effective Ways to Balance an Overactive “Fire”/ Digestive System

1. Avoid too many salty, pungent, and sour foods. These types of foods can cause more inflammation in an already inflamed GI tract. These foods include, meat (especially red meat), alcohol (putting alcohol on a blazing fire causes an explosion), pickled and fermented foods, olives, sea vegetables, any form of salt, hot peppers, mustard, garlic, onions, and hot spices.

2. Eat cooling, naturally sweet, bitter, and astringent foods, such as; cucumbers, fruits and berries, dark leafy greens, parsley, okra, green tea, most herbal teas, rice, unprocessed grains ( millet, amaranth, and quinoa) pastured raw dairy products (eat non-dairy alternatives, such as; coconut, almond, rice, and hemp if you are dairy sensitive), pumpkins, dates, maple syrup, and licorice root  *(do not eat licorice root if you have high blood pressure)

3. Use unrefined coconut oil for baking and cooking (coconut is a very healing, nourishing, and cooling food).

4. Don’t eat on the run- sit down when you eat, focus on the food that is about to nourish your body- eat slowly and chew well

*No technology devices when you’re eating- these devices disturb digestion

5. Have light, relaxed conversation when eating with family and friends-don’t talk about disturbing, stressful topics that “heat” you up during mealtimes

6. Activate the parasympathetic nervous system before meals (the parasympathetic nervous system is your relaxed, soothing, and calming part of the nervous system that helps the digestive system to flow and function properly).

*Activate this system quickly by practicing a deep breathing process where your exhale breath is a few more counts longer than your inhale breath. Do this before meals for several minutes to place your nervous system in the parasympathetic state. This breathing technique also helps to cool down too much “fire” or inflammation in the body and mind.

Please check out this resource for more information and proper instructions:

https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4386/A-Simple-Breathing-Exercise-to-Calm-Your-Mind-Body.html

7. Surround yourself with loving and nurturing people in your life

8. Spend as much time in nature as possible-also spend more time around water (water cools fire)

9. Use cooling and soothing herbs, such as; chamomile, slippery elm, marshmallow root, aloe vera, and DGL (deglycerized licorice root). The following link is a wonderful and soothing formula for an overactive “fiery” digestive system.

 https://www.amazon.com/Pure-Encapsulations-Support-Gastrointestinal-Capsules/dp/B00062IF54/ref=sr_1_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1512696819&sr=8-1&keywords=dgl%2Bplus%2Bpure%2Bencapsulations&th=1

10. Be gentle, loving, and kind to yourself.  Treat yourself like you would a close friend. We are so hard on ourselves and are apt to forgive others mistakes much quicker than forgiving ourselves. Watch the words you say to yourself too. Talk to yourself with kind and tender words. Our body and spirit is constantly listening to every word and thought we say and think. Our words are very powerful and can either bless and heal our spirit or destroy it.

Proverbs 18:21- Death and life are in the power of the tongue.

Make sure the words you say to and about yourself are words that will bless, heal, and give life to your body and soul!

Positive Healing Affirmations and Truth Statements

*Try to practice one or more of these truth statements that resonate with you. Try to practice them once or several times daily.

(from www.healingheartissues.com )  Diane Eble

I forgive myself and others, and trust in God’s unfailing love to bring good things into my life.

I trust God to show me my best next steps and to guide me in a peaceful way.

God frees me to love myself and others in a healthy way. There is no conflict between my needs and their needs. When I operate from love, God works everything out for the good of all.

As I take good care of myself, I am able to truly love others. I am worthy of self-nurturing. I am open to give and receive love from myself and other people. Love satisfies all my needs.

I focus on love and trust God for all my needs.

I bathe in the eternal love of God, and emerge clean, forgiven, and completely healed.

God creates desires in me so He can have the joy of fulfilling them. He wants to give me the desires of my heart. No good thing will He withhold as I trust Him. The joy of the Lord is my strength.

I treat myself and others with kindness and gentleness.

The world is what it is, but I choose to respond with kindness and gentleness, and to forgive all who wrong me.

I accept my human limitations and my needs. I do what I can and trust God to take care of the tasks, people, and events I cannot get to or control. I cease striving and let God be God.

I will receive all good things by surrendering to love and truth. I can lay down control and trust God.

I focus on love and trust God for all of my needs.

“The words of kindness are more healing to a drooping heart than balm or honey.” Sarah Fielding