There has been a recent buzz around gut health and the importance of healing your gut, but what does this actually mean, and more importantly, how does one go about it? There are many things you can implement into your daily life to improve your gut health. The health of your gut affects more than just the health of your digestive system. It affects your mental health, immune system, cardiovascular health, and more. Before taking the initiative towards healing your gut, you should be aware of why it’s important and the symptoms of an imbalanced gut.
Your gut microbiome contains all the bacteria, viruses, or fungi found in your intestines. A variety of different microorganisms live in your gut, and most of them add a positive health benefit to your body’s overall health. However, some bacteria, viruses, or fungi are proven to be more harmful than others. According to PubMed Central, having a wider variety of microorganisms in one’s gut can help reduce the risk of diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, and psoriatic arthritis.
Your gut health plays a significant role in many aspects of your overall health, including gastrointestinal issues. Having healthy bacteria in your gut microbiome reduces the risk of illness while positively impacting your brain function and digestive system.
As you can see, it’s important not to overlook the health of your gut microbiome. If you’re unsure of the state of your gut health, there are a few symptoms to look out for regarding an unhealthy gut. The most common sign usually involves discomfort in your stomach, whether it is bloating, gas, constipation, etc. Additionally, general body fatigue, trouble sleeping, and autoimmune issues are other symptoms of an imbalanced gut. You may also experience an unexpected weight change, either gaining or losing, which can be related to harmful gut bacteria. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, try out these six tips on how to heal your gut throughout your daily routine.
Staying hydrated and ensuring you drink your recommended daily water intake has numerous health benefits beyond your gut. However, in terms of your gut health, a study by the Journal of Nutrition found that more hydrated people had a reduced amount of harmful bacteria linked to gastrointestinal infections in their microbiome. Drinking more water can help flush out unwanted microorganisms and can also get things moving in your intestine to reduce constipation.
When it comes to gastrointestinal issues, it’s important to note the difference between food intolerances and food allergies. An intolerance deals with difficulty digesting certain foods, while an allergy stems from a reaction in your immune system. Some of the most common food intolerances are dairy or lactose, gluten, and acidic foods. If you notice that you experience stomach discomfort, nausea, or fatigue after eating specific foods, try eliminating them from your diet to see if it positively affects your gut.
A lack of sleep is never good for your overall well-being; therefore, it also negatively affects your gut. Not getting enough sleep can weaken your immune system while also causing inflammation in your body. Be sure to aim for at least 7-8 hours of adequate sleep, so your body has time to rest and prepare to perform at its highest level.
There are specific foods that have a positive impact on your gut health. High fiber foods, as well as fermented foods, have been proven to improve your gut microbiome. Even if you aren’t experiencing symptoms associated with an unhealthy gut, try incorporating more beans, whole grains, nuts, high-fiber fruits and vegetables, yogurt, and other fermented foods into your diet. It’s never a bad idea to give your gut health an extra boost.
Moving your body helps alleviate symptoms of an imbalanced gut, such as constipation or irritable bowel syndrome. Low-intensity exercise, like walking or yoga, can affect the gastrointestinal tract by reducing transient stool time. This means you’re able to pass bowel movements at a quicker rate than if you were sedentary. Being active in your daily routine can also help reduce stress, another trigger for weaker gut health.
If these lifestyle switches are still not showing an improvement in your gut health, you can always turn to supplements. Probiotics and prebiotics both benefit your digestive system. Probiotics contain healthy live bacteria for your gut and immune system, while prebiotics consists of fibers that encourage the growth of beneficial bacteria. Both of these can also be found naturally in foods; however, if you need an extra boost, consult your doctor to find the right supplement for you.
Prioritizing your gut health can lead to improvements in your overall health and well-being. By implementing these easy lifestyle changes into your daily routine, you can alleviate symptoms of an unhealthy gut and create a well-balanced gut microbiome. If you’re still experiencing gastrointestinal issues or would like to learn more about gut health, contact any of our providers at Wake Endoscopy Center.