Most disease begins in the gut. Hippocrates even knew the importance of gut health more than 2,500 years ago. Talk about keeping or restoring a good gut seems to be everywhere these days and science has embarked on a flurry of research into the topic. It is clear, however, that gut health affects everything in your body, including the health of your skin, your mood, your digestion, and it can even trigger or prevent disease.
Below, we’ve outlined some easy steps you can take to improve your gut. Here’s our challenge to you: Once you’ve read the article, make changes right away. It’s easy to say to yourself, “I’ll look into this later.” Take action before your brain can interfere with that decision.
Take A Quality Probiotic
Probiotics help maintain healthy intestinal bacteria or microflora and including them in your diet is the easiest step you can take to help your gut. Like anything else, the quality of probiotics vary, so it’s important to ask a trusted medical provider or health professional which brand they recommend. We are happy to share the brands we like; just ask us! To get you started, here are a few traits to look for in your probiotic:
-Probiotic supplements should contain 5 to 10 billion CFUs (colony forming units).
-Encapsulated pills are the best form of probiotic because they help the bacteria survive the acid within your stomach.
-A wide range of bacteria strains is best because each strain benefits different areas of the body.
Eat Less Refined Sugar
Refined sugar has a bad rap for many reasons, and gut health is one of them. Sugar helps promote the growth of bad bacteria in the gut and can cause inflammation as well.
Reducing the amount of refined sugar you eat will do wonders for your body overall, so we can’t stress enough the importance of cutting the sweet stuff!
Easier said than done, we know! But there’s a reason stress is called the silent killer. Its effects are widespread within your body, and the gut is one place where stress can wreak havoc. Instead of focusing on its negative effects, try looking for simple ways to reduce your stress. Ironically, stressing about stress is not good for you either!
These ideas will lower your stress:
– Meditation. Practice makes perfect, so try it several times before deciding if it’s right for you.
– Exercise. Physical activity lifts your mood as it lowers your stress levels. If you can’t get to a gym, that’s okay. Just try walking for a half an hour, get active outside in the garden or go for a run with your dog.
– Laughter. Laughing releases endorphins in your brain that are critical to improving stress. If your partner isn’t as funny as he/she thinks, turn on a show or movie to get your happy tears rolling.
Making an active choice to reduce stress will help immensely. When you choose to handle tense situations with a lighter attitude, your stress will start to melt away. You will retrain yourself how to react in a manner that leads to a more peaceful existence.
If this article has you thinking about improving your gut health and you want to know more, tons of online resources can help you make a change for the positive. Remember, respect your gut and it will thank you!