Gut health is important, for the health of the body starts with the gut to help reduce the risk of conditions like bowel cancer, constipation. The food you consume is broken down to fats, proteins, and simple carbohydrates in the gut and it is obvious that gut should always be in good condition to function efficiently to process the food that is consumed.
The problems in the digestive tract could be the one that affects the rest of your body and indirectly contributing to the symptoms like, a feeling of unwell, bloating, wind, pain, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, changes in appetite.
Dieting, avoiding entire food groups in the name of weight reduction will sabotage your gut health. Human gut often referred to as the “Second Brain.” When your gut is upset, your brain struggles, naturally!
When the gut health is affected, for example when the gut is unable to produce sufficient enzyme, the food will not be digested completely. The undigested food particles will then reach the bloodstream that causes inflammation. Environmental toxins consumed through food will damage the villi, specialized for the absorption of nutrients in the small intestine.
Craving for sweets can mean you have an imbalance of gut bacteria. Overgrowth of yeast in the system results when good bacteria are wiped of the intestine especially after a course or two of antibiotics.
When your gut is healthy, the rest of your organs will come into alignment better. So eating right will make sure that your gut is getting what it needs and function efficiently. It is true that the quality of food you eat affects your quality of life and energy production.
Tips to improve gut health
- Healthy digestion and absorption of nutrients always begins with a simple act of chewing the food. Chewing is the preliminary process of proper digestion. If food is not chewed properly, the digestion process is going to be much harder, later in the gut.
- A mix of raw and cooked vegetables will enhance the digestive health. Enzymes in the raw food plays major role in digestion of food and healing & detoxing of the intestine as well. Balanced food along with physical activity will help eliminate toxins from the body.
- Drink enough water, which is essential for a normal bowel function. Think twice before grabbing fizzy drink or juice. Soda and too much coffee too, will lead to dehydration and sap out your energy, as well.
- Fiber-rich foods keeps you full for longer and also help in digestion. Soluble fiber slows digestion and help absorb the nutrients efficiently. Cereal fibers resist digestion and retain water which act as highly effective laxative.
- Gut microbiota contains trillion of microorganisms, both good and bad. Consuming foods with probiotic strains (lactobacillus and bifidobacteria) will help maintain a healthy gut.
Can you believe that gut imbalance of the microbiota triggers depressive symptom! You should always see that your gut eco system is in a balanced state because the harmful bacteria in the intestine will produce toxic by-products that lowers serotonin levels, causing depression. Serotonin, an important chemical neurotransmitter is produced in the brain and gut. About 80-90% of the serotonin is produced in the gut and it is the chemical that is responsible for maintaining mood balance. The friendly bacteria will block the harmful microbes from setting up camp in the gut.
Gut- friendly bacteria regulates digestion and metabolism. They extract and produce vitamins and other nutrients through the food we eat, every day. When you take probiotic, the amount of friendly bacteria increases in the intestine that help in boosting the body’s immune system.
To balance the good and bad bacteria in the intestine it is crucial that you consume probiotic rich food every day. Fermented food like yogurt, kimchi, kefir, naturally contain probiotics that help maintain a healthy gut.
Pistachios, bananas, plantain, onions, garlic, oats, quinoa, millet and chia seeds are prebiotic foods that help increase the number of healthy bacteria in the gut.
Swap out refined foods for whole grains, plants, fruits, seeds and nuts for a good gut health.