The title of this blog may catch you off guard. When I say “transit time“ I don’t mean the time it takes to get across town. I’m talking about how long it takes for the food that you eat to travel down your esophagus, to your stomach, through your small intestines, your large intestines and then be expelled through your anus.
I’ve always thought that eating raw vegetables could cover up or buffer other bad dietary habits. Science has shown that my hunch was correct. This is because they decrease the transit time through our a gastrointestinal tract as well as providing the many other well-known health benefits.
Digestion takes anywhere from 24 to 72 hrs.. The average transit time is 30 to 40 hours in someone who is not constipated. The three best ways to speed things up are 1. Eat more fiber. 2. Drink more water. 3. Exercise daily.
A unique way in which faster transit time greatly affects your body weight is through the hunger modulating hormones. Leptin is a hormone made by fat cells that decreases your appetite. Ghrelin is a hormone that increases appetite and also plays a role in body weight. Studies have shown that fiber-enriched meals decrease post prandial glucose, insulin and ghrelin. These high-fiber meals provide the additive effects of decreased fat storage and decreased hunger.
To decrease your transit time and more easily achieve an ideal weight, eat more vegetables, especially brassica vegetables such as kale cauliflower or broccoli. Further, increase your consumption of legumes, beans and lentils, as well as colorful, organic, seed-containing berries