How to keep gut healthy?

Eight Ways to Keep Your Gut Healthy!

Expert's View Gut Health

Are you struggling with poor digestive health, constant bloating, and discomfort?

Then, it is time to pause and ponder – how healthy your gut health is. Our gut is the foundation of our overall well-being. Maintaining a healthy gut environment depends on several factors, but to a great extent, the food we eat can define our gut health. 

Importance of Gut Health

Our gut breaks down the foods we eat into small particles and helps absorb nutrients to support the rest of the body’s functions. The normal functioning of the gut to our overall health is highly essential. Our gut microbiome can impact the functioning of every organ in our body. Our gut health directly impacts the below-mentioned bodily functions:

  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Immune system
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Mental health
  • Endocrine disorders – such as type 2 diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Sleep-related disorders
  • Indigestion

A good amount of diversity in gut bacteria is an essential indicator of the health of our microbiome. What we eat largely influences our gut bacteria, so it is necessary to give them the right fuel to have a balanced microbiome. The best way to have a healthy microbiome is to eat a variety of fresh, whole foods, mainly from plant sources like fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, nuts, and whole grains.

Here are eight simple ways to improve our gut health naturally.

  1. Having a Fiber-Rich Diet: Adding plenty of vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, and nuts may improve digestive health. Eating ample fiber helps promote regular bowel movements and enables the growth of beneficial gut bacteria, keeping the gut healthy. One must consult a dietitian for proper guidance.
  1. Processed Foods and Sugar: Processed foods and added sugars can disturb the balance of bacteria in your gut and contribute to inflammation. To support gut health, one must eat whole and unprocessed foods whenever possible.
  1. Staying Hydrated: Proper water intake is crucial for adequately functioning the digestive system. Experts advise drinking 2-3 liters or at least eight glasses of water during the day to help flush out toxins and keep the digestive system hydrated.
  1. Regular Exercise: One must engage in regular physical activity to promote healthy digestion and bowel movements. Exercise helps stimulate the muscles in our digestive tract. Thereby reducing the risk of constipation and promotes gut health.
  1. Probiotics & Prebiotics: Adding probiotic-rich foods such as curd, greek yogurt, kimchi, and kombucha to the diet can help restore a healthy gut microbiome balance. This is due to the presence of good bacteria. Consume foods rich in prebiotics, such as garlic, onions, leeks, bananas, asparagus, and oats. Prebiotics feed the beneficial or good bacteria in our gut, helping them thrive and improving digestion.
  1. Manage Stress: Chronic stress negatively impacts our gut health by altering gut motility and increasing inflammation. To support a healthy gut-brain connection, practice stress-reduction techniques such as meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, or spending time in nature.
  1. Adequate Sleep: One must aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night. Poor sleep can disrupt gut health by affecting hormone levels and increasing inflammation. Therefore, establish a regular sleep schedule and create a relaxing bedtime routine to support optimal gut function.
  1. Intermittent fasting: Intermittent fasting is great for gut health as it gives the digestive system periods of rest that help promote beneficial changes in gut microbiota composition and diversity. Moreover, it can reduce inflammation, improve gut barrier function, and reduce the risk of gastrointestinal disorders. However, adequate nutrient intake is essential to boost overall health and maintain a balanced microbiome.

The Bottomline:

There are no miracle cures for good gut health and no scientific evidence that particular foods or products may heal an unbalanced gut microbiome. However, eating a nutritious diet can help maintain a healthy gut and improve overall well-being. For a good gut health, one must monitor their digestion. In case of any problems in digestion consult a gastroenterologist.