This is the most important subject of this chapter, for without proper digestion, much ill health and many diseases can be created. The digestive system comprises the mouth, spleen, pancreas, stomach, liver, gallbladder, intestines, and colon. There is much work to be done by each of these; for instance, the mouth secretes digestive enzymes, and the entire digestive tract is populated by symbiotic bacteria whose job it is to break down the partially processed food and assist its decomposition by fermentation.
A few helpful tips on eating are:
• Don’t eat if you are angry or frightened; eating should essentially be a feeding, nurturing, and sensuous experience.
• If you are tired but hungry, choose easily digestible foods that need little chewing, like soup, broth, soft fruits, or vegetable and fruit juices.
• A relaxed state of mind means relaxed stomach muscles and an easy production of balanced gastric juices, resulting in proper assimilation and easy, natural elimination. A before-dinner joke is as important as an after-dinner one; laughter is the best relaxant I know. That, or simply take some deep breaths.
• Mothers with babies and young children often have enforced strange and disturbed eating routines, especially when nursing; therefore they need extra support and help at this time.