The symptoms you describe are quite non specific and can be indicators of several health conditions. You may wish to visit your Doctor who can test for Iron levels, infections and also rule out gastric related disorders such as ulcer and gastritis.
In the meantime you can begin by looking at your digestive processes and stress response. The two are closely related and when we are under pressure we generally don't digest well. A poor digestive function will in turn influence your nutrient absorption and compound energy problems caused by overwork and stress.
Our digestive system requires that we be relaxed and centred to carry out its function of breaking down foods, transforming and utilising nutrients. In a relaxed state our blood supply remains in the digestive system and the bowel, when we are stressed or busy our body switches to a primitive response which diverts blood supply to our heart, head and legs so that we can run, fight and respond quickly and efficiently.
Unfortunately in the modern world the triggers that would initiate the stress response in our ancestors, including scavenging for food against other animals of prey, or running away in a fight, are physiologically similar to the demands we place on our body when we struggle to meet deadlines, push on when we are unwell, or worry and internalise things.
In periods of stress we seem to approach our life in different way, eating when working and uptight, grabbing food on the go and not taking the time to relax and unwind before eating. This means that the food we eat sits in our digestive systems with a decreased ability to break it down and utilise its nutrients. When food is not broken down it starts to ferment and creates gases.
This is particularly true of foods that are already harder to break down such as proteins and fats. It is also interesting to note that at this stage, foods that are too cold or consumed cold, also affect what little blood supply you do have in the digestive system causing it to divert away. In Chinese medicine foods that are too cold and damp are thought to damage the ability of the body to break down and transform foods into essential components that produce energy and the immune response.
If you are finding that you fit into this category and your stress response is ongoing you may want to introduce the use of a few supplements to aid your digestive processes. These include the use of a digestive enzyme that breaks down proteins, fats and carbohydrates, a probiotic supplement like Inner health or Gastro Relief by Ethical Nutrients and herbal teas or formulas that can aid in dispelling gases and soothing the digestion such as chamomile, fennel and licorice.
In relation to your diet everyone is different in what foods they should avoid however I generally say to avoid foods that are hard for an under-functioning digestive system to deal with, because you also suffer from some symptoms of acidity you will need to look at foods that promote alkaline conditions as well as minimising those that contribute to acid. I have listed some below.Minimise or Avoid:
You may find that you could do well by incorporating the following:
- Minimise Raw Mueslis which contain bran nuts and seeds
- Minimise heavy foods with a high fat and protein content such as large steaks
- Avoid breads and yeasty foods
- Avoid foods which contain artificial colours, preservatives and food additives
- Minimise dry fruits (especially if they are dried with sulfur dioxide)
- Avoid foods that you notice remain undigested in your bowel movements these may include capsicum, tomatoes, sprouts and seeds.
- Coffee, spices, chocolate, sugar and alcohol can all contribute to acid and reflux disorders.
- Warm oat or rice porridge in the morning
- If you are eating dairy make sure it is fermented and teamed with a warm food e.g. yoghurt on top of your porridge or on your stirfry.
- Eating whilst relaxed
- Do not eat when upset or angry
- Breathe and chew when you eat
- Plenty of dark green vegetables
- Eat from a variety of colours and shapes when consuming vegetables
- A green superfood supplement like Ultimate Greens or Vital Greens will also supply nutrients and highly alkalizing superfoods.