Gut health has become increasingly important in recent years, with research showing the gut plays a critical role in breaking down the foods we consume so our bodies can absorb the nutrients needed to support our body’s functions. Gut health also has a significant impact on our mental health, immunity, weight management and more.
This means it’s vital that we support our gut by promoting the growth of good bacteria by eating a well-balanced and varied diet, as well as trying to reduce stress, exercise regularly and maintain healthy sleep patterns.
Read on to find out more about your gut health below!
The benefits of a healthy gut
Our gut is filled with microorganisms and digestive enzymes that live inside our intestines that work to nourish our bodies by absorbing nutrients from our food into our bloodstream whilst also removing any unnecessary waste.
Maintaining a healthy gut is important as increased levels of good bacteria in our gut can help to reduce depression and anxiety, support our immune function, ease the symptoms of autoimmune diseases such as Coeliac and Crohn’s disease, as well as assist in the regulation of our appetite and metabolism to support a healthy body weight!
Signs your gut is unhealthy
An unhealthy gut typically happens when you have a diet that is high in sugar and processed foods, causing the bad bacteria to outweigh the good bacteria. This can cause a range of uncomfortable symptoms from bloating, nausea, vomiting and indigestion through to increased stress, anxiety and weight gain. An unhealthy gut can also lead to autoimmune diseases, colitis, diverticulitis and other chronic health issues that can have a significant impact on your overall health and wellbeing.
How to have a healthy gut
If you’ve been experiencing any of the above symptoms, or simply want to look after your gut health, it’s important to start by consuming the right foods. A diet filled will fresh produce, fibre, probiotic-rich foods and fermented foods will help keep your gut feeling great! Fresh produce such as bananas, celery, onions and green vegetables are essential, combined with plenty of wholegrains, rye, lentils, natural yoghurt and nuts and seeds! These foods promote good bacteria in your gut so your mind and body can function at their best. Keep sugars and processed foods to a minimum where possible and ensure you are eating around 25-30g of fibre each day.
In addition to eating a healthy, balanced diet, it’s important to reduce stress levels by meditating or practicing relaxation breathing techniques, as well as exercising for at least 30 minutes each day. Research has shown that stress, even if it’s short lived, can disrupt the microorganisms in the intestines which in turn can throw your gut health off-balance.
Support your gut health by heading into your local A Better Choice retailer to shop our range of fresh produce today.