The intestine has the biggest population of microorganisms in the human body. They are collectively known as the gut microbiome 🦠, and they play a critical role in overall health. Therefore, it's absolutely crucial to maintain a good balance of bacteria within your gut to ensure you have a variety of bacteria living there.
Gut microbiota composition is mostly unique to each individual and is influenced by:
- Medication (antibiotics, acid suppressants, anti-diabetic drugs…) 💊
- Dietary habits and the way food is cooked 🥦
- Environment and lifestyle 👩🏻🌾
- Weight gain 💪🏻
Why the gut microbiome is important? 🧐
The gut microbiome is extremely important to your health since it aids digestion and benefits your immune system, among other things. Weight gain, excessive blood sugar, high cholesterol, and other illnesses may be caused by an imbalance ⚖️ of dangerous and beneficial microorganisms in the intestines.
How do I know if my gut is healthy? ⚡🦠
There are several simple techniques to determine whether your stomach is healthy and your digestive system is functioning properly.
📍One or two regular bowel movements each day, as well as the absence ❌ of gas, bloating, stomach pain, and hemorrhoids, are all signals that your digestive system is in good functioning order 👍🏻.
On the other hand, signs that your gut may be unhealthy include:
- Constant stomach pain
- Food cravings
- Weight gain
- Skin irritation
- Autoimmune disorders
How to maintain a healthy intestine ✅
If your intestine is clearly suffering, because you have one or more of the above symptoms ☝🏻, consult a doctor or nutritionist.
But once the issues are properly addressed, there are many ways to maintain a healthy gut.
It's suggested that you increase your consumption of probiotics 💊, which essentially give your gut's "good bacteria" a boost. Probiotic pills are accessible without a prescription, but probiotics can also be found in foods like kefir, tempeh, fermented foods, and kombucha.
Prebiotic fibers are also known to help probiotics maintain environmental change; you can get them naturally from:
- Green vegetables
- Help you absorb calcium
- Change the rate at which foods cause spikes in blood sugar (the glycemic index)
- Ferment foods faster, so they spend less time in your digestive system and help you avoid constipation
- Keep the cells that line your gut healthy
Eating no sugars, managing stress properly, getting regular sleep and exercise have also been shown to help improve gut health ✨.
Also, eating polyphenols has also been shown to have many health benefits.
Polyphenols are plant compounds that human cells cannot always digest. Because they are not efficiently absorbed, most polyphenols find their way to the colon, where they are digested by intestinal bacteria.
Some examples of foods rich in polyphenols are:
- Cocoa and dark chocolate 🍫
- Green tea 🫖
- Almonds 🌰
- Onions 🧅
- Blueberries 🫐
- Broccoli 🥦
Many parts of your health are dependent on the bacteria in your gut, and a messed-up microbiome can lead to a slew of chronic illnesses.
Eating a variety of fresh, whole foods, primarily from plant sources, such as fruits and vegetables, is the greatest approach to maintaining a healthy microbiome.