In summer, we need to take a closer look at our intestines. Here is the advice of Dr. Beatrice Salvioli, gastroenterologist at Humanitas, guest at Cuore and Denari on Radio 24.
Fibers and moisturizing
In summer we are led to eat more fibers, these are certainly healthy for our body, but their consumption must be accompanied by good hydration. Without an adequate supply of water, the fibers can cause swelling and constipation.
Intestinal Fibers and Microbiota
Fibers are the main nutriment for the intestinal microbiota; the latest research has shown that the microbiota feeds on fibers and therefore these are also important for all processes of immune defense.
How much do I need to drink?
Thirst stimulation indicates that our body has already lost too much fluid. As an indication, one glass of water should be drunk every hour (about 120 cc). Particular attention should be paid to children and the elderly who dehydrate more quickly, also because they are less thirsty.
Often on holiday you lose your bowel regularity. It should first be noted that not all intestines are the same and that the regularity varies from person to person and not everyone needs to go to the toilet every day. Those who find it hard to go to the toilet when their environment changes and are afraid of suffering on holiday may be able to take in fibers on a daily basis during the days before departure, so that their intestines are well prepared. Soluble fibers can be bought in pharmacies and are drunk after being dissolved in water. They can be taken in the evening or before meals. It should also be remembered that physical activity also helps intestinal movement.
For those with a lazy bowel
The advice is to consume fiber, drink water and engage in physical activity. The ideal is about 25 g of fibers per day, but these should not be considered in terms of weight but of quantity: bran, for example, contains 46 g of fibers in 100 g, and is excellent to eat at breakfast.
In the case of an irritable or colitic bowel
Beware of temperature changes (first and foremost air conditioning), ice in drinks, milk and dairy products. For those who travel abroad, in order to avoid the risk of the traveller’s diarrhea, it is advisable to consume well-cooked food and packaged drinks.
Signals that should not be underestimated
In general, adults with a family history of serious bowel problems and who observe a change in their habits in terms of regularity (from normal to constipated or from normal to dysenteric) should seek immediate medical attention. In the same way, the presence of blood in the feces must absolutely be investigated.