How To Heal Your Gut In 6 Steps
Your gut health is the main axis around which your overall health revolves. Happy Gut = Healthy You. Keep reading to discover 6 steps on how to heal your gut naturally and improve your gut health.
As well as being over 70% of your immune system, your gut microbiome (digestive system) affects your mood, weight, cognitive function, organ health and your overall sense of wellbeing. Your gut is more than just a digestive system, it literally is your entire being. Gut issues, even if you don’t have any symptoms, can also cause back discomfort or pain, anxiety, worry and sadness. So how can you optimise your gut health to reduce stress? You can also Stimulate Your Vagus Nerve to help reduce stress and anxiety.
Healing your gut can also help heal many mental and emotional problems as well as a whole host of physical problems. A healthy digestive system can help you lower your stress levels naturally by lowering your reaction levels to everyday stress.
It may seem like a daunting task to start your gut healing journey and it may not be the easiest thing you will do but it will definitely be one of the most rewarding.
Signs Of An Unhealthy Gut
First of all, lets cover the symptoms of a dysregulated gut;
- Digestive issues such as bloating, wind, constipation, diarrhoea, irritable bowel, heartburn
- Sleep issues, poor quality sleep, hard to get to sleep, constant waking
- Skin rashes and/or allergies, psoriasis/eczema like rashes
- Autoimmune syndromes, thyroid issues
- Sugar cravings
- Fatigue, constantly tires, sluggishness
- Unexplained mood disorders, depression, anxiety, mood swings
- Unexplained weight loss or weight gain
Quick Gut Health Fixes
Some quick gut fixes include:
- Avoid taking unnecessary antibiotics
- Cut way back on or eliminate completely processed foods from your diet
- Avoid gluten
- Eliminate sugar from your diet
- Swop sodium chloride (table salt) for sea salt or Himalayan salt
- Avoid white carbohydrate foods, white pasta, bread, cereals, wheat, pasta
- Add prebiotics and probiotics to your diet, onions, garlic, fermented foods (kefir, kimchi, saurkraut, kombucha), natural live yoghurt, fruit and vegetables.
You can also take a Probiotic Supplement to help balance your gut bacteria.
If you suffer from a number of the above it can be an indication that you need to look closer at your gut health.
6 Steps To Heal Your Gut
For a more intensive gut overhaul, add the following 6 steps to heal your gut recommendations to your regular routine;
- Eat Healthy: This is probably the most important thing you can do for your gut. Eating a diet low in processed foods is essential, in fact, if you can change to organic foods as much as possible, you will be avoiding all those nasty chemicals and pesticides that are so harmful to your gut lining. Eat a variety of fruit and vegetable colours for the widest possible array of vitamins and minerals. Consume nutrient rich gut friendly foods such as fermented foods, cultured natural or live yoghurt, herbal teas (chamomile, saffron, green tea), nuts and seeds, leafy greens (a good balance is to eat 80% plants that grow above the ground to 20% plants that grow below). All these will help decrease gut inflammation, repair your gut lining and wall and feed your friendly bacteria. Fish (salmon, trout, mackerel, hake, cod, whiting) (no shell fish) are excellent sources of non inflammatory protein, 2-5 eggs per week are also beneficial, as well as white meat, limiting red meat to a maximum of 1 time per week.
- Get More Exercise: As well as a healthy diet, regular exercise is important for a healthy digestive system. Exercise increases oxygen and blood to your intestines, helping your gut bacteria to grow and flourish as well as efficiently taking away waste products.
- Stay Hydrated: It may seem like a no brainer, but drinking plenty of fresh clean water daily is essential to your gut environment. Water is vital in maintaining a healthy intestinal lining as well as helping move food along and flushing away waste products. Water cleanses and detoxifies your entire digestive tract.
- Pay Attention To What You Eat: The more natural your diet is, the better. Cutting down on or completely avoiding processed foods, sugar, sodium chloride and white carbohydrates will result in a much healthier gut. All these foods cause gut inflammation and this can raise the possibility of developing a long term gut related condition.
- Deal With Stress: Stress has a major impact on your gut health, especially long term consistent stress. As well as causing stomach upsets, stress speeds up the movements of fluids and solids through the digestive tract, causing diarrhoea or loose stools. It can also lead to delayed emptying of the stomach and, over the longer term, lead to stomach and digestive issues such as inflammation.
- Check For Food Intolerances: Many people nowadays suffer from food intolerances although most of these result from eating processed foods, gluten or from the chemicals used in food production. Sticking to an all natural organic diet can eliminate many, if not all, of these allergies. But we always recommend that you attend a specialist for proper food intolerance testing.
How To Tell When Your Gut Is Healing?
As your gut starts to heal you may notice some or all of the following;
- Reduction in wind and/or bloating
- Regular easy stool movements, ideally at least 1 per day
- No foul smelling stools
- Better and balanced mood
- Reduction in, or no, anxiety or worry
- Better quality sleep
- Improved weight management
- More energy.
Returning your gut to full health can seem like a daunting task but we suggest taking it one step at a time, perhaps starting with avoiding processed foods, gluten and sugar. This is a giant first step. As you get used to your new diet, you will find that it is much more varied than you think. Improving your gut microbiome will result in an improvement of your overall health and wellbeing, making any changes well worthwhile. You will find improvements in your immune health, heart, brain function, happiness levels, improved sleep, mental health and, of course, digestive health. Improving your gut health will literally change the way you live your life, for the better.
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