WHAT IS GUT HEALTH?
The “healthy” gut bacteria of your microbiome support your immune system, your cardiovascular health, a healthy body weight and many other aspects of health. Your gut microbiome directly controls digestion and nutrient absorption and provides vital support of your immune system which actually originates in your gut.
When your gut is “unhealthy” it is out of balance. An unbalanced gut environment can cause much more than gastrointestinal symptoms like gas, bloating, or diarrhea. When your gut is unbalanced (unhealthy) your immune system will be suppressed, your hormones become imbalanced and body wide inflammation sets in, increasing your risk of autoimmune diseases. Prolonged gut imbalances will cause chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and skin conditions including eczema and rosacea.
SIX SIGNS OF AN UNHEALTHY GUT
Extended Bad Breath - Halitosis or constant bad breath may be an indicator that you have less-than-optimal (imbalanced) gut flora to digest food properly, and rotting food in your gut.
- Sugar Cravings - If there are more “bad” bacteria than “good,” the imbalance causes a release of regulating hormones; leptin and ghrelin. These are proteins that affect both your food cravings and mood and thrive on sugar.
HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR GUT HEALTH
HOW TO INCREASE GOOD BACTERIA
Probiotics and prebiotics support and balance your microbiome. Probiotics are the “good” gut bacteria and prebiotics provide food for these bacteria. Prebiotics promote the growth and proliferation of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) in your digestive system. Probiotics are living microorganisms which when provided in adequate amounts provide the health benefits of you gut. The major difference, probiotics are living organisms while prebiotics are foods that are not easily digested by humans but feed the beneficial bacteria in your gut.
Your gut health will improve and you will experience the health benefits of a balanced gut if you add probiotics to your body through diet and add prebiotics to your body through diet. As an example, your colon contains millions of bacteria but few can survive the entire trip through your digestive system to get to your colon. Adding those that can survive and also the prebiotics that can support those beneficial bacteria will provide the most beneficial environment for colon health.
HERE ARE ELEVEN STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO IMPROVE YOUR DIGESTIVE “GUT” HEALTH. THESE INCLUDE:
- Avoid Inflammatory Foods - Inflammatory foods include gluten, dairy products, corn, soy and sugar. These foods trigger your inflammatory response and are responsible for the majority of your food sensitivities and food allergies. Additional inflammatory foods you should avoid; processed deli style meats, sugary colas and sodas, trans fats, white breads and pastas, soybeans and soybean oil and processed snack foods.
Avoid Gut Irritants - Food and drinks containing chocolate, alcohol, caffeine or sorbitol irritate the lining of your gut, stomach and intestines and also trigger irritable bowel
- Exercise Daily - Moderate daily exercise should be an important part of your lifestyle. No matter how busy you are, you should always try to take out at least 20 minutes each day for a brisk walk or stretching exercises.
- Eat More Natural Probiotics And Prebiotics - This will ensure that there are enough good bacteria present in your gut to help in fighting dangerous bacteria which ultimately can lead to disease. Prebiotics are present in fiber-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Probiotics occur in many fermented foods, including; yogurt, kefir, fermented foods, such as sauerkraut and kimchi, kombucha, traditional buttermilk and fermented cheeses, such as Gouda.
- Consider Probiotic and Prebiotic Supplements - Apart from taking natural sources of probiotics, take prebiotic supplements because they are what supports probiotics and all the good bacteria in your gut. Include probiotics supplements if you have difficulty adding or digesting probiotic rich foods. The good bacteria in these supplements will help to form healthy gut flora and aid you in battling with conditions like Leaky gut syndrome.
- Choose Easily Digestible Dairy Products - Choose dairy products that provide the most health benefits and are easily digestible by most people such as such as yogurt and kefir. This will add to your much needed good bacteria (probiotics).
- Eat More Fiber - Plenty of fiber in your diet will improve all facets of digestive health. It has been shown that many digestive disorders and disease are a direct cause of a low-fiber diet. Adding fiber is arguably the most important thing you can do to improve digestive health. Fiber acts as roughage which is the best among all constipation remedies.Whole grains, raw vegetables, fruits and cereals these are all rich in dietary fibers. Make wheat bran and oats a part of your diet instead of processed flours or corn.
- Avoid Saturated Fats And Calorie Dense Foods - These types of food have a negative impact on your digestive health. By avoiding them, you will ensure that your digestive health improves.
- Eat Small Meals - Smaller meals frequently instead of having heavy meals twice or three times a day, start consuming small meals frequently. Have something after every four hours. But make sure you do not increase the calorie intake. These small meals would keep you full and make it easy for your digestive system.