A healthy gut is essential to keeping your body healthy. Your digestive tract holds your intestinal bacteria, which is your first line of defense against many illnesses. It’s important to maintain healthy gut bacteria levels in your stomach through a healthy diet because your digestive health can affect the eyes and the brain.
A Healthy Gut for Better Health and Well-Being
The Gut as a Source of Diseases
To some, the diseases connected to digestive health are limited to illnesses like leaky gut syndrome and irritable bowel syndrome. However, your gut flora can be a source for other kinds of diseases. The gastrointestinal system has up to 10 times more good bacteria than the rest of the body. If your gut bacteria isn’t healthy, then your digestive system can’t help prevent infections and diseases.
Factors for Having an Unhealthy Gut
There are a lot of factors that can make your gut sick. Here are some of the reasons why your gut may not be in peak condition:
- Stress- Going through intense emotional situations can cause an imbalance in your gut. Stress can have negative effects on your sensitivity, blood flow, gut permeability, digestive secretion, and bacterial composition.
- Environmental Toxins- Pesticides, arsenic, herbicides, BPA, and PCBs are all detrimental to one’s health. Glyphosate is present in the world’s most popular herbicide. Its residues can be found all over staple foods such as corn, wheat, sugar, and soy. Glysophate targets good bacteria, and lets antigens take over.
- Over-medicating- Don’t take more than the intended amount of medicine because it can weaken your gut. Be extra careful when taking antacids, anti-depressants, birth control, and antibiotics. Antibiotics lessen the diversity of your gut flora and leave you vulnerable to disease-causing bacteria.
- Current Body and Health Composition- Living an active and healthy lifestyle will lead to a healthier gut. Eat healthy foods and exercise to help your body stay healthy. This is especially important if you have any existing gastrointestinal diseases.
- Inadequate Good Bacteria Exposure during Infancy- A mother’s diet during pregnancy and breastfeeding are very important. Their children’s health is highly dependent on their mother’s digestive health. For mothers, consider a vaginal birth when possible because infants get a bulk of their good bacteria from passing through the vaginal canal.
The Relationship of the Gut, the Brain, and the Eyes
Tired eyes? Listen to the Mysteries of the Gut Instinct, a story of the second brain, here: https://t.co/8gcCLGFUAT
— Comstock’s magazine (@comstocksmag) August 1, 2017
The brain and the stomach have a very sensitive connection. Simply thinking about eating that slice of cake you have in the fridge can get your stomach acid bubbling before you’re even in the kitchen. Similarly, a troubled gut can also be the source or the product of your anxiety, depression, or stress.
Researchers at the National Eye Institute have found that your gut bacteria can trigger autoimmune uveitis. This inflammatory eye disorder happens when your immune system goes down. It attacks the proteins in your eyes.
Foods for a Healthier Gut
To have a healthy gut, you need to cut back on processed foods and eat more organic foods. Fiber-rich foods will also promote better digestion. You can get more good bacteria into your digestive system by eating these kinds of healthy gut foods:
- Fermented foods: Sauerkraut, kimchi, natto, carrots, green beans, beets, and pickled vegetables are fermented foods.There are also fermented drinks like kefir and condiments like raw apple cider vinegar. Fermented foods enhance the diversity of your gut microbes.
- Cultured dairy products: Dairy products like buttermilk, kefir, yogurt, and cheese are probiotic foods. Probiotics are the good bacteria which help maintain digestive health.
- Prebiotic foods: Almonds, legumes, mushrooms, oats, cereal grains, and bananas are only a few in the long list of prebiotic foods. These foods are rich in fiber and promote fermentation for a healthy gut. Prebiotic foods are great for a high-fiber diet.
- Short-chain fatty acids: All kinds of legume provide short-chain fatty acids which improve digestive absorption, strengthen your intestines, and help with weight loss.
Supplements to Maintain a Healthy Gut
The human microbiome of a healthy gut should have 30,000 different strains of bacteria. These bacteria all work together to keep the body healthy. To help balance your gut bacteria, take prebiotics or probiotic supplements, or a plant-derived supplement like Restore for Gut Health. Take 1 tsp. before meals to support immune function, promote digestive enzymes, and increase mental clarity.
To find out more about the connection between your gut and your brain, check out this video by Thomas DeLauer about gut bacteria and mental health!
An imbalance between the good bacteria and bad bacteria can cause the rest of the body to suffer. Your digestive health is affected by the food you eat. Additionally, maintaining a healthy emotional state and lifestyle can also promote a good gut. A healthy gut is also key to a better health and well-being.
Do you have any tips on how to maintain a healthy gut? What are your favorite healthy gut foods? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.
Editor’s Note – This post was originally published on November 10, 2017, and has been updated for relevancy and accuracy.