Are you taking care of your gut?

Hippocrates said, "All disease begins in the gut" and we now understand much more about why and how that is proving to be true!

We think of the gut as the place that breaks down and absorbs our food, which is true, but it does much more.

Did you know that your immunity is linked to your gut? The more good bacteria you have outweighing the bad, the stronger your immune system as your body can better fight off disease and illness.

And possibly even more surprising, did you know that your mental health and mood are also linked to the gut? It's estimated that 70% of serotonin is produced in the gut!

When your gut is depleted, you can experience fatigue, bloating, headaches, food sensitivities, inflammation coming out through your skin or joint pain or more. Auto-immune issues are also closely linked to gut health.

So how do you take care of your gut?

First, try to limit the worst offenders. Sugar, processed foods, and (for some people) gluten can create a lot of inflammation and feed the bad bacteria.

Toxins in our food like pesticides and other chemicals worsen the gut, as does medicine, birth control and other 'foreign' substances. Antibiotics, while serving an important purpose when needed, completely wipe out both the bad AND the good bacteria, so it's especially important to repair your gut after a round of those.

Second, add in probiotic rich foods. These are things like fermented veggies, sauerkraut, miso, yogurt, kefir, kombucha, kimchi and to some extent, olives, pickles, vinegar and sourdough products.

If you choose a jarred product, make sure it is refrigerated and still "live" not canned and heavily processed.

You can also supplement with a probiotic- this adds those good strands of bacteria back into your gut.

How are you caring for your gut?

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© 2015 Laura Peifer

West Orange, NJ

 

 

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