Gut Health is indeed the most exciting area of research, and not just with regard to the importance of the right bacteria for weight loss, but we now know that bacteria can be lifesaving and life giving. Our bodies contain 40 trillion microbe – even more than the 30 trillion human cells that we have, and over 1,000 different “species” of microbe have been identified – each one of them affect the body in a certain way. These microbes are minute pharmaceutical geniuses that do things that human pharmacists can only dream about! This is why doctors and scientists are looking to the gut as the way to resolve any number of different health issues. Microbes have the ability to change your life, they can do this all day every day, as long as we create the right environment for them to live and thrive. Take care of your Microbe means taking care of your health.
The collective name for all of your microbes is your microbiome. If it were to have a written job description or a “to do” list, it would look something like this:
• breakdown otherwise indigestible foods
• provide energy
• break down toxins
• manufacture vitamins /fats and other substances
• run your immune system
• regulate body weight / control hunger signals
• help regulate/control blood sugar spikes
• control mood – mental health
So, you’re more likely to feel your best when your microbe is healthy, they are responsible for firing up your energy levels, to helping deep, restful sleep, keeping your immune system in tip top condition…. and so many other parts and processes in our body are directly linked to the gut microbe, so simply making these little bugs healthy can make YOU healthy. The key is to learn how to make your microbe the ABSOLUTE BEST it can be.
Having gone through the research for the last few years as it comes out, the advice is clear, and I quote from one professor in an online discussion I read “Eat the hell out of plants”. That means eating a MUCH wider variety, eating the rainbow daily.
A diet of highly processed foods has been linked to a less diverse gut community and an overgrowth of unhealthy bacteria will make you crave the wrong foods, triggering inflammation. Keep your microbiome fit by cutting back on refined carbohydrates and too much animal protein. Eat an assortment of foods to encourage a more varied metropolis in your belly. The good news is that these foods could make you feel better in as little as 24 hours!!!
You really can take control by feeding your microbiome the right foods, alongside an assortment of vegetables and fruits, some great dietary sources are: organic free range eggs, liver, fish, nut and seed oils, yoghurt and kefir, fermented vegetables, sauerkraut, apple cider vinegar, sprouted grains, kombucha, coconut oil and high fibre foods such as artichokes, green peas, lentils, black and lima beans, almonds, raspberries, and apples.
A healthy diet with natural probiotics and a good intake of digestive enzymes (found in uncooked plants and vegetables) all help to maintain and calm the gut. Healthy gut bacteria activate neurons in the brain that produce serotonin so you really will be eating food that is good for you and makes you feel good.
Prebiotics are less well known than probiotics and are specialized plant fibres that nourish the existing gut bacteria. Whilst probiotics populate the gut with new bacteria, prebiotics feed them and sustain them. In this way they are both equally as important for gut health. In other words, eat lots of raw vegetables and fruit daily!
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