Ah, Summer. Dayflowers, Echinacea, Prairie roses, Queen Ann’s Lace and butterfly weeds are our current visitors, beautifying the glade, pond and the rocky road to our home.
The heat becomes unbearable for my husband and I during this time. As Alaska transplants, our roots are accustomed to a long season of cold without the heat or humidity in Missouri. As the sun steps into the spotlight of our daily life, now is the time to nourish the small intestine and heart.
In the physical, the heart is a circulation pump for the blood of our body. The circulation system is also included, as it is the carrier of blood and nutrition to the cells of our body. Spiritually speaking, the heart is the center of truth and is the home of our I AM. There are energy meridians that bring energy directly into the heart. Other energies enter our body through the brain. The heart and brain exchange information constantly via the energy meridian and nervous system. The more we care for and nourish our heart and mind, the more available these energies are for living our daily lives.
The Small Intestine:
The small intestine is about 21 feet of intestine covered with villi and microvilli that increase the surface area available for the absorption of nutrients. There are some enzymes that enter here from the liver and pancreas to increase digestion. This is also where 90% of the nutrition we take in: sugars, proteins, carbs, vitamins and minerals are absorbed by the blood or transported to the liver. There are also billions of helpful bacteria that aid digestion and protect the lining so that nutrients and vitamins are readily absorbed. Toxins and waste materials are then moved onto the large intestine for further processing and elimination.
Foods that support Heart Health:
- Salmon is high in Omega 3 that improve metabolic markers for heart disease. It is high in selenium, which is known to protect the heart.
- Walnuts and Almonds are high in Omega 3, Vitamin E, Fiber, Folate, which are all essential for heart health. If alkalinity is an issue for your body, almonds are the better choice, as they produce alkalinity.
- Chia seeds are high in Omega 3. They are also a powerhouse for reducing cholesterol and plaque buildup in arteries and veins. Consider adding a tablespoon to a breakfast smoothie or to a cookie recipe.
- Oatmeal is high in fiber and used to reduce cholesterol. Use organic steel cut or rolled oats when making oatmeal for breakfast or making great oatmeal cookie bars!
- Blueberries contain resveratrol and flavonoids that support the immune system and heart health.
- Raisins are high in potassium and support healthy blood pressure.
- Broccoli, cauliflower and brussel sprouts are all high in fiber and antioxidants which support heart health.
- Oranges are high in flavonoids and reduce blood pressure and inflammation in the arteries. Oranges also contain hesperidin, which increases blood flow to the heart.
- Good coconut oil is used for digestion and heart health. It contains about 50% lauric acid which is good for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. It is also good nutrition for the arteries and veins.
Foods for Small Intestine Health:
- Yogurt and Kefir contain probiotics that support healthy digestion and the absorption of nutrients and vitamins. Increase the benefit by eating yogurt with fruit or make kefir smoothies. They are delicious and great for your small intestine and heart health. Unpasteurized milk or goat’s milk is best. It contains probiotics, which make it more digestible by your body.
- Visit Cultures for Health to purchase supplies and learn how to make your own yogurt , kefir and other fermented foods that will aid your digestive health.
- Foods high in fiber, such as fresh fruits and vegetables are essential to small intestine health and the body’s nutrition.
- Unsulphured Molasses are high in B vitamins that support healthy nerve function. When under stress, nerve functions can become impaired and this in turns affects the peristalsis and function of the entire digestive tract. Try 1 or 2 Tablespoons of molasses in a glass of unpasteurized milk or warm water. My mom loves to eat it by the spoon each day. It not only serves the nervous system, but it helps release build up in the lining of the digestive tract. Unsulphured molasses is very high in antioxidants, iron and manganese, copper, calcium and supports healthy bowel movements.
Herbs for Heart and Small Intestine Health:
- Cayenne is a favorite heart food. It clears plaque from the blood, vessels and heart; it also aids the small intestine in sealing off tears that create leaky gut. If you have difficulty in handling summer heat, this is the herb for you. Cayenne helps you sweat more readily, which aids your body in adjusting to higher temperatures. Drink lemon water with a dash of cayenne and honey. Also take cayenne/ginger capsules (also referred to as Cool Cayenne) in the summer to help the body adjust and handle heat. It can improve your digestion, circulation and heart health as well.
- Ginger is a fabulous digestive aid, reduces pain and inflammation in the digestive tract, arteries and veins. It is commonly used for digestive issues, nausea, indigestion, heart strokes and menstrual disorders.
- Hawthorn Berries: this is the mother of herbs for the heart. It helps regulate blood pressure, reduces anxiety, protects the heart, improves digestion, reduces the severity of chest pains, and treats intestinal infections. Hawthorn berries are high in folic acid, B vitamins, Vitamin C, rutin, catechins, saponins, and antioxidants.
Essential oils for Heart and Small Intestine Health:
- Fennel: This is great for digestive issues, upset stomach, inflammation, and it helps stimulate the secretion of digestive and gastric juices to facilitate improved digestion. It’s good for gas, constipation or diarrhea, and helps reduce damaging LDL cholesterol and blood pressure.
- Ginger oil is helpful for nausea, stomach upset, poor digestion and carsickness. Place a drop in a glass of water and sip it. Mix it with carrier oil and rub it clockwise on the stomach for relief from gas or stomach upset. It is also beneficial to the heart and circulation by removing inflammation.
- Lemon oil is wonderful for breaking down congested lymph and waste in the body. This in turn lessens inflammation strengthens the digestion and heart over time.
- May Chang: also called Litsea, has been used for arrhythmia, flatulence, indigestion, and heart palpitations. Apply in 5% dilution in carrier oil to the heart and then take a warm shower and relax. Add it to your skin care products for great skin; and soothe the nerves and inflammation in the nervous and circulatory systems.
- Vetiver is a steam-distilled grass is used to calm and reduce inflammation in the circulatory and nervous system. It is helpful for sunstroke and dehydration. It promotes the growth of new tissue and reduces scars. It is a tonic to the entire body, and is particularly helpful to the metabolic system: it rejuvenates the body, soothes nerves and reduces stress, which is known to aid heart and digestive health. The sedative properties are helpful to anger, anxiety, hysteria, nervousness and insomnia. It is also balancing to the hormones in the body.
Written by Char Milliman on June 24, 2016.