The 411 on Gut Health
Are you feeling sluggish or fatigued throughout the day? Though many of us blame these issues on our sleep schedule, gut health can be equally as important to your energy level. If you’re also experiencing thyroid disease, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes or other inflammation, there could be an overgrowth of bad bacteria in the gut. Let’s take a closer look at the role the gut plays in our health so that we can begin to bring relief, improve our GI health and restore balance to our digestive system.
The Bad Bacteria
Just like the plot in your favorite feature film, your gut undergoes a battle between good and evil every day. Your gut houses tons of different kinds of good bacteria. These helpful heroes keep your gut microbiome in check. They help you create energy from your food, rid your body of harmful toxins and fight away harmful viruses and infections. They overtake your bad bacteria each day to ensure that the good bacteria prevails while the harmful bacteria stays at bay. When the bad bacteria gets out of hand, this can lead to the problems mentioned above and other digestive issues like Crohns, Ulcerative Colitis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). It can also have a big impact on your physical and mental well-being.
So what can you do to ensure you give your gut the best environment possible to help fight the good fight? It’s so important to avoid processed foods and give your gut the healthy things it needs to function. You want to include a lot of fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and nuts to your diet. Both grapeseed oil and olive oil are showing great benefits for your gut health as well. You’ll also want to make sure you’re adding healthy probiotics and prebiotics to your diet. Both of these are living organisms that help you stay healthy. Here’s the difference:
Prebiotics-Think of the prebiotics as food for the probiotics. These are plant-based fibers that are found in fruits and vegetables and complex carbs. They aren’t digested by you, and aren’t killed by time or the acid in your stomach.
Probiotics- A live organism that can be found through food (like yogurt) that contains this special bacteria. It’s extremely good for your gut health. The probiotics eat the prebiotic fibers but are eventually killed off over time by the stomach acid. They are used up in the stomach and small intestine.
Restoring BalanceBy introducing positive steps like choosing fresh groceries and ensuring you get enough prebiotics and probiotics, you can help your gut reach equilibrium, which is a beautiful and balanced place to be. Make sure to keep an open line of communication with your medical provider about what you’re feeling and ways to ensure that you have optimal gut health. The benefits can include everything from an improved mood, weight loss and less digestive tract issues.