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4 Ways to Improve Digestion and Gut Health
Jenn Pike

As a Holistic Lifestyle Expert and Registered Holistic Nutritionist, I don’t think you can ever... more

4 Ways to Improve Digestion and Improve Gut Health
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As a Holistic Lifestyle Expert and Registered Holistic Nutritionist, I don’t think you can ever do enough to ensure that your digestive system is in fabulous health.

The vitality of our digestion system plays a significant role in your immune system as well. More than 70% of your immune system lives within your gut micro-biome and it has an internal ebb and flow that is essential to both protecting your body and to work synergistically with your breath, your food intake, good bacteria, and movement to reduce and kill off any bad bacteria, parasites, and junk that comes into your body through your food, water, and environment. When there are too many bad bacteria through antibiotics, medications, corticosteroid creams, processed foods, too many animal products, dairy and sugar, the bad bacteria spreads, multiplies, and creates big problems.

We don’t realize that our digestive system is quite literally the foundation of our entire health and wellness; working alongside our nervous system and every major organ system within our body to provide us with the wellness and vitality we’re all after.

Here are just a few of the digestive issues you could be dealing with:

  • Bloating and gas
  • Stomach pain
  • Indigestion
  • Reflux and acidity
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Food sensitivities or allergies
  • Headaches
  • Mood swings, anxiety and/or depression
  • Inability to focus or stay engaged.
  • Insomnia
  • Bed wetting
  • Eczema, psoriasis, hives and acne

So what can be done?

  1. Avoid the irritants SAD GAS: Soy, artificial sweeteners, dairy, gluten, alcohol and sugar. These six foods right here are the game-changers for my private clients. Unbelievable freedom will happen in your body when you begin to clear out the biggest culprits behind bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, eczema, acne, mental fog, anxiety and insomnia. TRUTH. Trust me and trust the process. When you are eliminating these foods you cannot even have a morsel of them during our guided period of time. Even the littlest bite can throw your system off and re-activate inflammation and trigger an autoimmune response. I have worked with so many families and individuals and have had the most incredible digestive turnouts you could ever imagine.
  2. Ensure proper hydration. Without enough water in your body daily, it will be virtually impossible for you to have regular bowel movements, detoxify your system, absorb nutrients optimally, or to feel energized. For Children aim for 1-1.5 litres daily and for adults at least two to three litres of pure, good quality water daily. Water-rich fruits and veggies plus organic herbal teas, coconut water and healthy non-dairy based low-sugar smoothies will also help you achieve your hydration goals.
  3. Eat the rainbow. (that grows from nature not a factory). Begin introducing more fresh vegetables to your family and small amounts of fruit. Try smoothies, baking and pureeing with them as well as getting your children involved in the meal shopping, prepping and cooking process. Also try buying organic and non-GMOwhen you can, the EWG has a great resource to help you know what to select to work within your budget and what is available locally too It is incredible to watch the energy, mood and digestion plus the sleep of a child change when we remove the major gut and body irritants and begin to supply their system with more whole foods. Problems that we thought could never be helped begin to resolve themselves once the body has the right tools and resources to draw from. Each day in practice I watch children overcome and heal from; constipation, eczema, anxiety, depression, inability to focus, chronic ear infections and colds, poor sleep and so much more simply by giving their body nutrients.
  4. Include a daily probiotic supplement. Probiotics are hugely important in your digestive health. These good bacteria enhance the breakdown and absorption of vitamins and proteins, and help to reduce the bad bacteria and viruses that live in our gut. Choose a product that is refrigerated and has at least 20 billion cultures per capsule.

Your digestive system is a gift…treat it well.

Jenn Pike is a mom of two, nutritionist, master personal trainer and author. For more quick and healthy tips and to learn more about Jenn, her best-selling book The Simplicity Project and more, visit 'The Simplicity Project' and follow her on Instagram @jennpike and Facebook under The Simplicity Project.
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7 Ways to Save Money on Spring Fashion
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Spring has sprung (minus the occasional snow storm) and let’s face it, we’re all itching to break out the t-shirts, sundresses, and sandals. Each spring brings with it a new season of trends and coveted ‘it’ piece, and it’s hard to know what’s worth the investment and how you can stretch your budget further. Follow these tips and you’ll be sure to step out in style without draining your bank account.

First things first, spring-cleaning is a must. A new season means a fresh start, and what better way to make things fresh and organized in your home than cleaning out your closet. I bet you’ll be surprised by how much you can accumulate in a year. The rule is, if you haven’t worn something in a year, you probably won’t wear it again anytime soon, so get rid of it and make room for a few new items. Donate it to your favourite local clothing drive or sell online if it’s worth a pretty penny.

Make it personal. You don’t have to incorporate every single trend that’s featured on the runway or in your favourite fashion magazine into your wardrobe. Instead, it’s really about deciding which trend compliments your personal style. Being selective about your staple pieces this spring is also a good way to shop on budget.

Spring flowers. You can’t go wrong with big bold floral prints—they are the way to go this time of year! While you may want to buy every gorgeous floral piece you see, resist that urge. Invest in one or two prints that you’re drawn to. A silk flower cami can be a very versatile piece to pair with high-waisted trousers and layered under a chunky knit sweater.

Check out retailers like Banana Republic and Joe Fresh to get a head start on your hunt for florals.

The hi’s and the lows. If you’re hoping to splurge on a few pieces to last you through the warmer months there’s a smart way to go about it, and that involves investing in pieces that are hi-end (as long as you can’t live without them!) and mixing them in with lower-cost items that you may love just as much but help stretch your budget. Splurge on investment pieces like a leather jacket or trench coat. These staple items can be worn all spring long, and will last a few years, so they’re worth the extra money. Lower-end items like jeans, scarves and tops are easy ways to pull in the season’s latest trends without breaking the bank.

Organize a clothing swap with friends. A great way to get new-to-you clothes without spending a dime. Plus you can catch up with friends while purging that closet—a win-win for all.

Refresh what you already have. We see many similar styles in rotation when it comes to street style, so some pieces that were popular three years ago still remain trendy. While your cleaning out your closet, be on alert for some street style chic items (oversized graphic sweaters, boyfriend jeans, chambray shirts, overalls, midi skirts, etc). Compliment new with old, and no one will be the wiser.

Get online. Earn cash for purchases you would make anyway from any of your favourite retailers like Hudson’s Bay, Old Navy, Rebecca Minkoff and more through

Sign up for and earn a $10 bonus.

Sari Friedman is the Marketing Director of Ebates Canada and resident shopping expert. is Canada’s largest Cash Back shopping site. As a fashion enthusiast and new mom, Sari has an eye for finding and sharing amazing deals on the hottest trends and must-have styles.
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