The diverse role of the gut on our physical and emotional wellbeing along with its really complex science has made doctors more intrigued about it by every passing day. For the past few decades, there has been a lot of research and analysis on the role of the gut on our health, signs of poor gut health, and how to avoid it.
For the past year, I have seen some major fluctuations in my weight. I kept blaming it on all the stress I am taking during the COVID-19 pandemic until my friend noticed me during a video call and immediately felt that something’s not right. She booked me an appointment with her cousin who is a certified Gastroenterologist in Karachi. I was diagnosed with poor gut health.
Along with the prescription, I asked the doctor to tell me more about gut health and how to avoid poor gut health in the future. The doctor gave me some amazing insights into the topic. And here is what I learned:
Our gut or in a medical term called the gut microbiome refers to all the microorganisms living in our digestive tract. They include roughly 500 types of bacteria in our stomach and intestines. Unlike the common perception about the bacteria, these microorganisms are really helpful and aid in promoting our wellbeing.
Constant exhaustion and fatigue, disturbed sleep cycle, unintentional weight fluctuations, autoimmune conditions, food intolerances, skin irritations, stomach disturbances, etc. all are the signs of poor gut health. However, the causes are still not completely known. But the common causes for poor gut health include high sugar intake, high stress levels, inadequate sleep, and taking antibiotics can all damage our gut microbiome.
Here are some common tips to improve gut health without use of any medication:
To provide nutrients to the diverse range of microbiota food should have a vast range of nutrients. Unfortunately, the food we consume is rich in carbohydrates and fats only. In Fact it is estimated that only 12 types of plants and 5 types of animals are responsible for 75% of the world’s food. Henceforth, taking a healthy, balanced, and diverse diet can promote gut health.
Not getting enough sleep does not only make you feel fatigued but can cause a much more serious underlying problem like a poor gut health. Make sure you get 7-8 of uninterrupted sleep every night. If you experience difficulty in sleeping at night, consult your doctor immediately.
Mental health and physical health go hand and hand. It is not possible to maintain a healthy body in the absence of a sound mind. Just like the rest of the body, high stress levels can affect your gut too, in a worst possible way. Meditation, exercising, enjoying a massage, spending time with friends or relatives, diffusing essential oils, reducing caffeine consumption, playing, yoga, or keeping a pet may be several ways to minimize stress.
Another easy way to promote gut health is by staying hydrated. Water consumption has shown positive effect on the growth of gut bacteria and the mucosal lining of the intestines.
Eating slowly and chewing food properly can have immense effect on your gut health as it ensures thorough digestion of food and the maximum absorption of nutrients. This will help you lower the stomach disturbances and promote a healthy gut.
If you experience discomforts like cramps, bloated stomach, diarrhea, fatigue, rashes, abdominal pain, nausea, and acid reflux after eating certain food, chances are that you might be experiencing some kind of food intolerance. To see if the condition gets better, you should try avoiding specific trigger foods. You can see a positive difference in your digestive health by improving your eating patterns if you are able to understand a food or food that contributes to your effects.
Gut health is not only limited to our digestive tracts but also affects our heart, our skin, our mind, our immune system, our hormone levels, our weight, and even the risk of cancer. Consult your Gastroenterologist immediately if you see any symptoms of poor gut health.
Meta Description: Having a balanced diet, a healthy sleep cycle, stress free lifestyle, high water intake, controlled food intolerances, and swallowing properly chewed food can ensure a healthy gut which not only promotes a healthy digestive tract but is also important for your heart, skin, mind, immune system,hormone levels, weight, etc.