– Post by Love Wellness Contributor: Ezayas1390. Join the discussion and read more on The Love Club
It’s no secret that gut health plays a huge role in our immune health but did you know the gut actually contains 70% of the body’s immune system?! That means if your gut health is poor then you increase your risk of developing diseases such as chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, diabetes as well as autoimmune disorders.
Our gut microbiota is a key factor in ensuring our digestive system performs its roles of regulating hormones, excreting toxins and converting food into simple nutrients successfully. In order to keep a healthy balance of good bacteria in your intestine it’s essential to establish healthy food habits and so important you stick to them to be able to improve gut health in the long term.
Below are easy yet very effective ways to help get you started!
Eat More Fiber
There are three types of fiber: insoluble, soluble and resistant starch. Both soluble and resistant starch help with the growth of friendly bacteria in your gut. Consuming fiber-rich foods such as legumes, whole grains, nuts, oats, apples, broccoli, bananas and strawberries will help to maintain bowel health.
Try keeping processed and fried foods to a minimum since they support the growth of bad bacteria and yeast in your gut.
Spice Up Your Meals
If you’re already a fan of taking ginger shots or drinking golden milk, then it’s time you start adding ginger and turmeric to your meals! These spices won’t only add an extra kick of flavor to your food but their antibacterial properties will help to stop the growth of harmful bacteria in your gut.
Too much alcohol can irritate your digestive system by causing an imbalance of gut bacteria (overgrowth of harmful bacteria & reduction in beneficial bacteria) which may lead to inflammation of the gut. It’s recommended that you drink no more than two standard drinks on any day but if you’ve just had one of those days or just want to have a night with the girls then indulge in some red wine! It contains microbe-feeding polyphenols which can actually help improve the bacterial composition in the gut!
Incorporate Probiotics Into Your Diet
And not just sporadically, they’re only beneficial if you take them every single day! Probiotics are the good bacteria your gut needs in order to help your immune system thrive. We suggest taking a probiotic supplement (hey Good Girl Probiotics!) in order to get a measured dose and identifiable species of bacteria but you can also get them by consuming fermented foods such as kimchi, sauerkraut and natural yogurt.
Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
At this point in your life, water should be your very best friend! Consuming sufficient amounts of H2O can not only improve skin health but it also allows your digestive system to work properly. If you’re not drinking enough water you become dehydrated which can cause constipation and an overly acidic stomach which increases the risk of heartburn and stomach ulcers.
Get off your booties and start moving! Exercise helps your digestive system by stimulating the muscles in your GI tract as well as increases blood flow to all your organs. So whether you hit up your favorite workout class or just go for a walk, make sure to get your body moving for at least 30 minutes a day.
Take Control Of Your Stress
Let's be real, stress is an inevitable part of our day-to-day but if we let it take over our lives it can do harm to our digestive system by creating gastrointestinal inflammation, diarrhea and constipation. In order to manage your stress, make sure to carve out some “me time” into your day by putting down your phone, practicing meditation, and exercising to release endorphins.
If you’re looking to improve your overall gut health and wellbeing then begin incorporating these easy habits into your daily routine and make sure you’re also getting enough sleep to keep you functioning at your best!