5 Tips to Keep Gut Healthy

39 trillion “bugs” are working around the clock in your digestive tract to keep you healthy. You have a rainforest inside you, which is both complex and interconnected.

That is correct. The microbiota in your stomach has a big impact on the rest of your body. According to recent research, the complex community of bacteria and other critters in your intestines break down food and churn out chemicals that help keep your bowels regular, tune up immunity, help regulate body weight, blood sugar, and blood fats, reduce inflammation, influence your moods, and may even play roles in thinking and memory. In a headline-grabbing 2021 research of 4,560 person ages 18 to 98 from the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle, a diversified gut microbiota was related to a longer, better life. keep gut healthy

It’s no surprise that gut health has become a national obsession. Sales of probiotic supplements, which promise to deliver friendly bacteria to your stomach, surpassed $800 million in 2020, while sales of “prebiotics,” which are indigestible fibers that gut bacteria thrive on, have doubled every year since 2016. Probiotics and prebiotics are turning up in gut-friendly enriched chocolate, snack bars, soda, oatmeal, peanut butter, dried fruit, and breakfast cereal. Gut “cleanses,” specific diets, and at-home microbiome stool testing promise to improve gut health. keep gut healthy

However, these high-priced products aren’t always required to promote intestinal health. Consume actual food. Probiotics are certainly safe, but there aren’t many researches that prove them to be effective. What this research reveals is that your inner zoo prefers the simple life – nutritious foods and smart habits that have been shown in recent studies to support a diversified gut microbiome and the real-world benefits of gut health. keep gut healthy

Happy microbiome, health you

Your microbiome can’t be seen, but it may be heard sometimes. When munching on fiber from the bean burrito you got for lunch, for example, you’ve probably had to stifle the excess gas they blow out. However, good gut bacteria produce a variety of chemicals that have significant health benefits, including:

  • SCFAs are short chain fatty acids that can enter the bloodstream and go to the liver and other tissues throughout the body, where they play a role in appetite, feelings of pleasure after eating, blood sugar absorption, and cholesterol use. Other SCFAs remain in your intestines, where they can aid in the killing of colon cancer cells and the reduction of inflammation. keep gut healthy
  • Indolepropionic acid, scavenges cell-damaging free radicals and may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
  • Serotonin and GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) are neurotransmitters that may explain the link between the microbiota and sadness. These feel-good molecules are produced by more than just your brain. In the intestines, GABA helps the gut nervous system regulate gut peristalsis, which is when the gut contracts and forces food down the intestines. A healthy gut microbiome will have a lot of bacteria that generate GABA. This aids in maintaining your regularity. GABA, on the other hand, regulates how brain cells communicate. It’s possible that the association between depression and gut-health issues like constipation and diarrhea isn’t coincidental. keep gut healthy

A diversified microbiome is beneficial in general. A healthy microbiome contains 250 to 300 distinct bacteria species. 70 to 80 species would be considered low. Inflammatory bowel illness, psoriatic arthritis, type 1 and 2 diabetes, obesity, and vascular stiffness have all been linked to low diversity in persons. Diversity means a greater range of helpful bugs, as well as backups in case one type fails. Each of us has our own microbiome. Some of it comes from what we eat, some from our mothers, some from genetics, and some from bad things we do to it, such as antibiotics, which may kill bacteria that are our friends in that community.

Gut health hacks that work

Without supplements, fortified meals, or microbiome tests, you can still nurture a diverse gut microbiome for excellent gut health. These six simple tactics, according to experts, are effective to keep gut healthy:

1. Consume fermented foods on a regular basis

In an August 2021 Stanford University study, people who consumed fermented foods every day for 10 weeks improved the diversity of their gut microbiota. Fermented foods included yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, the yogurt-like drink kefir, and kombucha (a fermented beverage). Participants who ate more high-fiber diets, on the other hand, found no increase in diversity.

Even more surprising: only 10% of the beneficial bacteria discovered in fermented foods actually settled in the participants’ intestines. Fermented foods, according to researchers, may promote diversity by throwing the microbiome off balance, allowing tiny colonies of existing bacteria to thrive. Researchers recommend trying a variety of fermented foods and eating them on a daily basis. Look for living, active cultures in yogurt and foods that haven’t been heated, which would destroy the bacteria.

2. Consume a wider range of fruits and vegetables

Researchers discovered that those who ate 30 or more types of vegetables in a week had a more diversified gut flora than those who ate fewer than 10 types. It didn’t matter if people are vegetarians or meat eaters because this was more crucial for gut-bug variety. Having a variety of fruits and vegetables provides a greater diversity of fiber, carbohydrates, and other nutrients, which feed a wider range of bacteria. Eat the rainbow instead of just peas for dinner. Fruit and vegetable colors are chemicals that nourish different species of bacteria.

Broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower are all good choices. Brassica vegetables like these (as well as collard greens, bok choy, arugula, and Brussels sprouts) feed good bacteria that fight gut bugs linked to ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome. Bacteria that eat brassicas also train the gut immune system to make protective mucus that coats the intestines’ inner walls. That’s not all, though. Brassica vegetables include glucosinolates, which are converted by microbes in the gut into active isothiocyanates, which assist to prevent cancer.

3. Toast your good bugs with a mug of tea or coffee

Polyphenols, which can be found in coffee and black or green tea, can boost the number of good bacteria that protect the intestine’s inner lining and produce short-chain fatty acids. Polyphenols are also converted by gut bacteria into compounds that have protective benefits in the body, such as reducing inflammation, protecting cells from harm, and even guarding against cancer. Polyphenol-rich berries, asparagus, artichokes, and olives are also good for your microbiota and help keep gut healthy.

4. Go fish

In a 2021 study from Norway, persons who ate five salmon or cod dinners per week for eight weeks saw levels of a group of unfavorable gut microbes called Bacteroidetes reduce compared to people who skipped fish and ate their regular dinners. Bacteroidetes has been linked to type 2 diabetes, according to the study. People with higher blood levels of good fats had increased microbiome variety and beneficial bacteria in other studies, even if they didn’t eat a high-fiber diet.

5. Eliminate artificial sweeteners and emulsifiers from your diet

Strong emulsifiers in processed foods can break up the protective layer of mucus in the intestines, where there are lots of good bugs cavorting around, and sucralose, aspartame, and saccharin can mess with microbiome diversity in ways that may interfere with the body’s ability to absorb blood sugar, and sucralose, aspartame, and saccharin can mess with microbiome diversity in ways that may interfere with the body’s ability to absorb blood sugar. The emulsifiers carboxymethylcellulose and polysorbate 80 “profoundly influence intestinal microbiota in a manner that increases gut inflammation and associated disease states,” according to a study published in 2021 by French researchers.

6. Skip probiotics most of the time

The certainty of scientific evidence is low that probiotic supplements can help adults avoid diarrhea while taking antibiotics, treat ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease, or ease pain and other symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. The best thing you can do is eat fermented foods and, ideally, lots of fiber. If you’re new to high-fiber foods, start small and build up as you feel comfortable to avoid gas and bloating.

Probiotics may not even be helpful at restoring gut bacteria wiped out by antibiotics. In a 2018 Israeli study, people who took probiotics after a course of antibiotics still had a disrupted microbiome five months later, while people who didn’t take probiotics saw a healthy bacterial balance return after three weeks. Eating fermented and fiber-rich foods is a better idea to keep gut healthy.

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