Written by: Anne Marie Forgarty, RGN

Ways to Improve your Gut Health

For optimal health, it is essential to have a wide variety of helpful bacteria living in your intestines. Changes in stomach acid, gut immunity, and gastrointestinal flora—the complex ecology of microorganisms in your digestive system—are the primary drivers of gut health change. You are more vulnerable to sickness and chronic disease if the bacteria in your microbiome are out of sync. Dysbiosis is the medical term attributed to this condition.

These microbes above connect with our brains through hormone and nerve signals, making them significant influences in our lives and possibly impacting the decisions we make about food. Maintaining a healthy, diversified, and functioning gut microbiome is critical to avoiding digestive disorders and maintaining a strong immune system.

This article looks at the best foods for gut health and recommendations for improving your gut health.

Eat a balanced diet

Eating a balanced diet full of probiotic foods (known as ‘good bacteria’) can reduce illness-causing bacteria. Good bacteria can grow more readily in fermented foods such as yoghurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut, according to research on Lactobacilli. It is because our bodies can’t break down fibre on their own; hence food items rich in fibre are necessary for our gut flora to thrive.

By increasing the variety and proliferation of healthy bacteria in the gut, fibre may help prevent metabolic disorders. Fibre-rich foods like sweet potatoes, spinach, beets, carrots, and fennel are effective ways to keep your digestive system healthy. Whole grains, as well as fruits and vegetables, are excellent sources of fibre.

 

Regular workouts

Exercising is a great way to improve gut health and diversify the microbiome. It is possible to keep a healthy stomach even with low-intensity activities. An adult’s weekly physical activity requirement in the UK is 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity such as jogging or cycling. They also advise two or more days a week of strength exercise, such as yoga, dancing, gardening, or lifting weights.

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Avoid antibiotics

It is recommended not to consume more than one round of antibiotics yearly. Your microbiome will be altered after taking antibiotics. Aside from the fact that antibiotics can’t identify good bacteria from bad, they may devastate the populations of healthy microorganisms in our digestive systems. Always follow the instructions of your doctor or other healthcare providers while taking antibiotics.

 

Boost your mood

Stress may alter your microbiome’s structure and function, making you more prone to bad gut bacteria, whether it’s caused by psychological, physical, or environmental factors. You can enhance your gut health by reducing your stress levels. Invoke the power of gut-centred hypnotherapy. Symptoms may be reduced by at least half in individuals; it is hypothesized that it may reduce gut sensitivity, weaken contractions, and alleviate tension and anxiety associated with digestive issues. You can also employ other stress-relieving supports such as calming apps, relaxation techniques, quiet walks, mindfulness, calming lavender baths, or whatever helps your stress.

 

Intake of probiotics

Gut health is becoming more well known, and probiotic pills are becoming more popular as a result. Certain data suggests that probiotic pills sometimes help restore gut health, but they aren’t a one-size-fits-all solution. A probiotic pill may support proper gut health if you suffer from signs of poor gut health. For the best results, it’s crucial to pick varieties that can make it to the intestines unharmed; otherwise, taking them is no use.

Prebiotics are substances with benefits to your gut also they come from types of carbohydrates.

 

Refrain from smoking and drinking alcohol

Smoking has been shown to affect your microbiome in ways comparable to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and obesity, in addition to raising your risk of chronic intestinal illnesses and malignancies of the digestive system.

Similarly, overconsumption of alcohol may also have an adverse effect on your microbiota. Gastritis, a stomach inflammation which can sometimes be caused by repeated alcohol use, has been connected to using alcohol too frequently. Heartburn, prolonged pain, ulcers, and bacterial infections are all possible outcomes of such inflammation.

 

Final thoughts

Therefore, improving the health and function of the immune system begins with a strong digestive system. People’s gut microbial health may be improved by adopting the proper lifestyle and dietary adjustments. Taking probiotics, eating a fibre-rich vegetarian diet, and avoiding needless antibiotics are all positive adjustments one may make. Getting adequate sleep and exercising regularly are two more basic lifestyle improvements that you can adopt.

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