Contributed by: Rachana Arya
Hidden in the walls of the digestive system is the gut — your body’s second brain. When you have an unhealthy gut, it can take a toll on your health.
Experts and researchers studying the link between the gut and optimum health have concluded that
Within the last 15 years, scientists have realized what an important role
An imbalanced gut can often be treated with home and natural remedies.
Lower your predisposition to stress
If you experience uneasy gastrointestinal symptoms — such as heartburn, abdominal cramps, or loose stools — on a frequent basis, and especially if your symptoms are progressively getting worse, you may need to pay more attention to your stress levels.
Chronic levels of stress are hard on your whole body, including your gut. To restore your gut to optimal functioning, it is important to lower your stress levels.
Destressing tips for better gut health
Try unwinding at night with light reading
Practice meditation or yoga
Get a relaxing massage
Spend time with friends or family
Use calming diffuser oils or incenses
Decrease caffeine intake
Get enough sleep
Yes, lack of sleep can mess with your gut health. Studies have examined that sleep deprivation affects the variety and diversity of the gut microbes — making certain bacteria die off and others proliferate.
And that has knock-on effects on your health. Even short-term sleep deprivation can cause changes in the gut, including its “microbial community structure.”
Sleep tips for better gut health
Try to prioritize getting at least 7–8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night.
Don’t overload your digestive system with a heavy meal right before bed.
Avoid sleeping on your stomach as it compresses the organs of your digestive system.
Relax with a warm bath or a cup of hot tea for inducing sleep
Follow a bedtime routine each night
Eating too fast can lead to conditions such as heartburn and an upset stomach.
Chewing your food thoroughly and eating slowly aids digestion and absorption of nutrients.
Research indicates that chewing increases blood flow to the stomach and gut as well, thereby reducing digestive discomfort and maintaining a healthy gut.
Mindful eating tips for better gut health
Do not gulp your food down
Count your bites
Put your food plate down between bites
Among its many functions in the body, water plays a significant role in ensuring that your gut is doing its job properly to stay healthy.
Feeding the gut with all of the nutrients it needs, including an abundance of water has been shown to have a beneficial effect on the mucosal lining of the intestines, as well as on the balance of good bacteria in the gut.
Staying hydrated is a simple way to promote a healthy gut.
Hydration tips for better gut health
Eat your water intake
Consume water-rich foods, like cucumber, watermelon, celery or tomatoes – to name a few
Always keep a water bottle handy and refill it frequently throughout the day
Avoid ignoring thirst
Aim to drink at least half your weight in water, if not more
Take a prebiotic or probiotic
Prebiotic foods promote the increase of friendly bacteria that help ward off pathogens in your gut.
Adding a prebiotic or probiotic supplement to your diet may be a great way to improve your gut health.
However, it is important to remember that not all probiotics are created equally, and you may want to discuss with your healthcare provider which one may be right for you.
Check for food intolerances
Food intolerance is associated with increased odds of an imbalance of the gut microbiome, or the colony of bacteria that help digest our food, control our metabolism, influence immune function and inflammation, and hundreds of other jobs in the body.
The exclusion of specific foods can sometimes help restore intestinal equilibrium.
To discover if your symptoms improve, try avoiding typical trigger foods.
If you can pinpoint an item or foods that are causing your symptoms, modifying your dietary habits may result in a good adjustment in your digestive health.
Change your diet
Reducing your intake of processed, high-sugar, and high-fat foods can help improve your gut health, as these foods destroy good bacteria and promote the growth of damaging bacteria.
Additionally, consuming a diet rich in plant-based foods and lean protein can help your gut health. Try simple changes to your diet like eating a more fibre-rich diet.
If you make all these changes and are still experiencing symptoms of an unhealthy gut, you may want to ask your healthcare provider to have you checked.
It’s also highly recommended to take regular stomach tests to keep a check on your digestive health, especially if you experience the symptoms of an unhealthy stomach, frequently.
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