You may think that your bowel is in perfect health: after all, you do not suffer from irritable bowel syndrome or bloating, never experience acid reflux or heartburn and almost never suffer from stomach upsets.
But the symptoms of an unhealthy intestine can often manifest in other parts of the body. After all, the body is an integrated ecosystem, so the warning signs that appear in an area can be caused by imbalances in a completely separate system.
Scientists and medical professionals are continually learning about the complexity of the human bowel and the influence it exerts on immunity, cognitive function, weight control, hormonal balance and more.
Among other conditions, studies have found that improving bowel health can lead to an improvement in:
Immune function (As 80% of our immune system is located in the intestine!) Brain function Symptoms of anger, sadness and depression Obesity Levels of toxins in the body. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) Allergies Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Why is gut so important to overall health?
Our bodies, specifically our guts, are full of bacteria. In fact, there More bacteria in the human body. that there are cells, with approximately 100 billion microorganisms that inhabit only the intestine.
Fortunately, the vast majority of these errors are good, or at least they should be, if we are talking about an ideal instinct. And that is the key to intestinal health – make sure we have more of the "good" bacteria than the "bad" ones.
These beneficial microorganisms are known as "probiotics," which literally translates as "for life." They help us:
digest food absorb nutrients decompose some medicines kill some of the harmful bacteria that cause infections
Now that you know how important bacteria are to your intestinal health and overall health, here are 13 ways to help increase the amount of probiotics in your body:
13 ways to increase probiotics and improve intestinal health
1. Eat foods rich in probiotics
Kimchi, kombucha, kefir, miso, tempeh, sauerkraut, natural yogurt and Apple cider vinegar They are examples of fermented foods that you can eat to have a healthier bowel. In fact, some of these could not be simpler to do. How to start fermenting your own food..
And here they are Twelve of the best probiotic foods to begin adding to your diet..
2. Do not forget the prebiotics
You can increase the effectiveness of your foods rich in probiotics by also consuming some prebiotic foods. Prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates that "feed" probiotics, encouraging them to grow and multiply in your gut.
Foods rich in antibiotics include artichoke, asparagus, bananas, chicory, Garlic, onions, tomatoes and whole grains.
3. Use probiotic supplements
While fermented foods are the best and most natural way to get a healthy dose of probiotic bacteria, some people simply can not bear the thought of consuming these cultures. In this case, probiotic supplements can be a good alternative.
It is very important to choose a High quality supplement of a renowned brand.. Make sure it contains live strains of bacteria, which should be kept refrigerated. This now probiotic capsule foods It is considered one of the best probiotic supplements on the market.
When ConsumerLab.com They tested 12 different probiotic products, found that although they all contained at least one billion organisms per daily dose (an amount that can provide). some benefit) some products contained much lower amounts than they claimed.
4. Cut sugar and processed foods
Bad bacteria in our insides get saturated when we eat too much sugar! They are also quite partial to the fats found in processed foods, including cookies, cakes, chips, french fries and cakes.
In 2010, researchers. compared Italian children who ate a diet high in fat, sugar and starch with African tribal children who ate foods high in fiber from plants. They found that African children had more beneficial insects in their insides.
And a Study 2015 at Oregon State University indicates that both a high-fat and high-sugar diet causes changes in intestinal bacteria. They found that this negative impact on the gut microbiome led to a significant loss of cognitive flexibility: the power to adapt and adapt to changing situations!
5. Go vegetarian
Cutting the meat from your diet has a lot of health benefits – from reducing cholesterol, blood pressure and the risk of heart disease and diabetes to helping you lose weight, improve mood and increase nutrient intake.
The research now shows that a vegetarian diet can also alter the composition of your gut microbiome for the better. It's so effective that these changes can be seen in a matter of days!
A Study 2014, published in the journal Nature, reports that the gut microbiota of the subjects changed drastically within four days after the change from a diet of animal products to a vegetarian diet, and vice versa. Other investigation states that a vegan bowel profile is similar to that of vegetarians.
The microbiota of the omnivores, compared to that of vegetarians and vegans, produces more than one chemical associated with heart disease, inflammation and intestinal diseases.
Why not start without meat one day a week? Join the Meatless Monday movement and start enjoying better intestinal health.
6. Open Windows
Now we spend more time indoors than ever. Some surveys estimate that we are inside 90% of the time!
Fresh air is so important to the mind and body, how is the sunlight, so spending time outdoors is important. But considering how much of our day and night we spend inside, we must be aware of the quality of the air. in also – and the effect this may have on the microbiome of our homes.
A 2012 Study Highlights the importance of opening windows and increasing the natural air flow. The researchers discovered that this can improve the diversity and health of microbes in the home, which in turn benefits our body microbes.
7. Less stress
While stress is an inevitable consequence of our busy lives, the way we handle that stress is important.
The gut is especially vulnerable to stress, which can affect gastric secretion, intestinal motility, sensitivity, blood flow and more.
Our stress hormones can also influence how intestinal bacteria affect the production of hormones and the neurochemicals that communicate with the brain, including those that influence appetite. Changes in intestinal microflora induced by stress can also leave us open to the infection.
Long-term stress can Lead to the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), stomach ulcers, IBD, IBS and even food allergies.
Who said that laughter is the best medicine for something! There has even been A study To demonstrate that laughter can improve intestinal health.
The researchers studied both healthy people and patients with atopic dermatitis, a disease typically associated with imbalances in intestinal bacteria. After watching funny movies daily for a week, the intestinal flora of the patients had really changed and was becoming more in line with the flora of the healthy participants.
9. Consider if antibiotics are always necessary
Some estimate that half of the antibiotics they prescribe are unnecessary. We already know that this excess prescription leads to drug-resistant bacteria, but it can also be seriously shocking The health of our bowels in the long term.
Following a course of broad spectrum antibiotics, It can take weeks, months or even years for the microbes of the intestine to return to equilibrium.
Surprisingly, some researchers believe that antibiotics may even be causing permanent changes in the microflora of all people from generation to generation, which are transmitted from mother to child.
While antibiotics are obviously very necessary in some cases, ask your doctor before accepting them without questioning them. According to the clinic mayCommon viral infections that do not benefit from antibiotic treatment include colds and flu, most coughs, most sore throats, some ear infections, some sinus infections, and stomach flu.
10. Exercise regularly
Exercise has an important influence on the intestinal flora. Not only increases diversity of species and invert the guts changes of microbiota associated with obesity, but also works to reduce stress and the impact it has on insects in your digestive system.
When scientists from the University of Cork in Ireland study Forty professional rugby players discovered that the athletes' microbiomes were much more diverse than those of normal people.
The sooner you start exercising, the better. New research has shown that exercise in the first years of development has a significant impact on the diversity of the gut microbiome.
11. Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is not always easy, in fact, one third US adults UU they do not sleep as long as they should, something that could lead to an unhealthy bowel.
A Study 2014 demonstrated that sleep disorders and irregular sleep patterns can adversely affect the gut microbiota, which can lead to inflammatory diseases.
In addition, the disordered breathing associated with the common condition of sleep apnea has It has been shown In studies to alter the health of the microbiome. Mice subjected to conditions that mimicked the effects of sleep apnea for six weeks showed significant changes in the diversity and composition of their microbiota.
This sleep-gut connection is a two-way street. Scientists believe that insects in our intestines can affect sleep in a in different ways: changing the circadian rhythms and affecting the hormones that regulate our sleep and wake patterns.
12. Do not be a clean madman
Just as antibiotics alter the intestinal microbiome by indiscriminately killing all bacteria (even good ones), so does our obsession with cleanliness.
For example, investigation It shows that parents who cleaned their child's pacifier by sucking it instead of boiling it in water were doing them a big favor in terms of intestinal health. These children were less likely to develop allergies, thanks to the immune stimulation of the microbes transferred from the parents' saliva.
Children who grow up with a dog also have a lower risk of allergies because dogs are associated with a type of house dust that exposes us to important strains of bacteria, such as L. johnsonii, an essential species within the gastrointestinal tract.
Household cleaners that are marked as antibacterial should leave, as do most other charged chemicals. Less toxic cleaners like vinegar, sodium bicarbonate, lemon juice and Castile soap They are much better options.
13. Start gardening
Finally, getting your hands dirty on fresh soil will introduce your immune system to the billions of microorganisms found in plants and soil.
Gardening also relieves stress and allows you to go outdoors, two important factors for a healthy stomach. Here are some good tips to help you start your own organic garden.
Bonus: Test your intestinal bacteria at home and get personalized recommendations
It is difficult to make improvements when you do not know exactly what is wrong with your intestinal bacteria. Fortunately, a new test kit for the home of Viome lets you discover exactly what's wrong with your gut microbiome and then gives you specific advice (including foods to eat and avoid) to help you make improvements.
If you can not change weight stubbornly or are unexpectedly gaining weight, if you are always tired, get sick more often than normal, have digestive problems such as constipation, gas, bloating or acid reflux, experience regular acne breakouts or feel depressed or anxious for there is no obvious reason, then you should consider getting a test for intestinal bacteria. You can Get more information and order your Viome home test kit here.
Reference: https://www.naturallivingideas.com/13-ways-to-improve-gut-health/, by Jayne Leonard
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