Occasionally, we all experience some indigestion or digestive issues, but when these symptoms continue and become more frequent, they can severely impact our whole-body health; mentally, physically, and emotionally.
A healthy gut is essential for a strong immune system, a healthy heart + brain, good moods, restorative sleep, proper digestion of foods and absorption of nutrients.
SIGNS OF AN UNHEALTHY GUT
gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, acid reflux
cramping, abdominal pain
sudden weight changes
sleep problems and fatigue
skin conditions like eczema
food sensitivities, allergies and intolerances
Here are some simple and easy ways to improve your gut health and digestion:
1. EAT A HEALTHY DIET
+ Eating a wide variety of fresh whole foods is essential for a diverse and healthy gut microbiome.
+ Eat healthy fats like avocado, flaxseeds, chia seeds, walnuts, olive oil, etc. Your brain and gut are intricately connected, and it needs omega-3 fatty acids to thrive.
+ Eat more home-cooked meals and choose organic when possible.
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2. STAY HYDRATED
Drink 2 - 3 litres of water a day. Water helps to break down the food we eat, keep things moving through the digestive system (preventing constipation) and also helps nutrient absorption.
3. EAT FIBRE-RICH FOODS
Fibre and prebiotics are essential to feed the good bacteria in your gut. Vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds are all great sources of fibre.
4. CHEW YOUR FOOD WELL
Chew your food at least 30 times before swallowing, and make sure not to swallow bits and pieces. Digestion starts in the mouth, and chewing your food well is essential for proper digestion and absorption of nutrients and plays a vital role in improving your gut health.
5. EAT FERMENTED FOODS
Eat and drink probiotic rich foods and drinks like sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, kefir, tempeh, miso, etc.
6. EXERCISE REGULARLY
Daily physical activities and movement help keep us regular. Exercise also increases healthy gut bacteria, which improves our immune system and keeps us healthy.
7. GET ENOUGH SLEEP
Aim to get 7 - 9 hours of sleep every night. Lack of sleep affects the relationship between our gut and brain. This can lead to issues like inflammation, bloating, food sensitivities and changes in the gut microbiome.
+ Take a daily high quality probiotic to maintain and restore gut health.
+ Take digestive enzymes before meals to support digestion.
+ Take Vitamin C + D, Zinc, Glutamine, Selenium and Omega-3
9. FOOD IRRITANTS
Eliminate food intolerances, allergies, sensitivities, irritants or triggers, like wheat, gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, etc.
10. REFINED SUGARS + CARBS
Avoid sugars and grains which are heavily processed, e.g. white bread, white flour, white pasta, pastries, white rice, sugar, etc. It promotes the growth of bad bacteria, which disrupts the gut microbiome and may cause inflammation.
11. PROCESSED FOODS
Avoid processed foods, fried foods, food additives, trans fats, and artificial sweeteners. These foods are more difficult to digest, which irritates the gut and may cause inflammation and change the bacterial balance.
+ Use natural skincare + personal care products.
+ Use non-toxic household cleaning products.
+ Limit the use of antibacterial handwashes and sprays on your body.
+ Avoid artificial fragrances and perfumes in your home and on your body.
13. ALCOHOL + CAFFEINE
Avoid or limit drinking alcohol and caffeine as these irritate the digestive tract and disrupts the bacterial balance in your gut.
Manage or reduce your stress and get enough rest. There is a direct link between your gut and your brain, which is why stress has a negative effect on the balance of your gut bacteria.
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Avoid or limit taking antibiotics whenever possible. Antibiotics are the opposite of probiotics, therefore killing healthy gut bacteria.
GET IN TOUCH
Please get in touch if you're experiencing digestive issues and would like support and guidance to improve your gut health.