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Mar 21

Is your gut flourishing?

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Do you suffer from immunity problems, digestive issues, mental fatigue, lack of clarity, and balance issues? If you do, then you should be focusing on rebuilding your gut health. Your gut has a huge impact on your overall mental and physical health. By keeping your gut healthy you will see chronic issues like fatigue, fogginess, colds, aches, and pains diminish.

Your gut holds trillions of bacteria that help process your food, produce nutrients, and fight disease. Sixty to seventy percent of your immune system lives in your gut. Gut-associated lymphoid tissue (known as GALT) lies just below the mucosal lining of the gut wall and is an integral part of your immune system. The GALT contains specialized structures that are filled with immune cells that are responsible for recognizing and neutralizing harmful bacteria. When a pathogenic bacterium enters your gut through food or your environment the GALT triggers an immune response to prevent them from passing through the gut wall. The best way to protect your gut from infection and disease is through an abundance of healthy bacteria.

  When it comes to keeping your gut healthy the most important thing is balance.  In your gut there are good bacteria and bad bacteria. The good bacteria assist with digestion, produce disease-fighting antibodies, crowd out bad bacteria, and produce certain hormones, vitamins, and nutrients. When there are not enough good bacteria the harmful bacteria takes over. When this happens the results are painful problems like inflammation and infection. These problems can then lead to health issues. More than 95 million Americans suffer from some form of digestive issues. These issues range from constipation, diarrhea, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to more serious conditions such as acid reflux (GERD), ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease. In addition to digestive issues, other health issues can arise from the bad bacteria outnumbering the good bacteria in the gut, such as candida, allergies, arthritis, headaches, depression, autoimmune diseases, and many more.
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The best ways to make sure that you are taking care of your gut are:

  • Take a probiotic supplement. A daily probiotic supplement will help boost the good bacteria in your gut which will in turn boost your immune system and ease digestive issues. This is especially important when you are taking medications such as antibiotics and antacids because they wipe out a large amount of gut bacteria (good bacteria and bad bacteria).
  • Eat probiotic whole foods. You can also eat foods that are fermented and contain large amounts of good bacteria or make your own kambucha, which is a fermented tea.
  • Eat regularly, but not constantly and don’t eat late at night. You need to give your digestive system time to break down food that you have eaten so it keeps everything in your digestive tract moving instead of becoming stagnant.
  • Stay hydrated. A good rule of thumb is to drink half your bodyweight in ounces of water each day. For example, if you weigh 120 pounds you would want to consume 60 ounces of water each day to stay properly hydrated. Water is important to your gut because it keeps bacteria and waste moving through your digestive system which helps prevent constipation and bloating.
  • Decrease the amount of refined sugar and processed foods you eat. When you eat refined sugars and process foods the bad bacteria is being fed which increases the likelihood that your body starts to have digestive issues.
  • Decrease stress. When you experience chronic stress, your brain goes into a fight or flight mode. This causes your digestion and blood flow in the gut to slow down, the muscles that push along waste and bacteria to stop, and the secretions for digestion to decrease.

To be the healthiest you can be it is important that you keep your gut healthy.

 

Make an appointment today to find out more ways that you can keep your digestive system healthy. 708-366-8002

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