The gut microbiome is unique to each individual and begins in the womb, constantly changing throughout our lifetime. Factors such as your mother's health during pregnancy, environmental toxin exposure throughout life, nutrition, and stress can significantly influence how the bacteria in our gut adapt and perform. This makes the digestive system one of the most complex systems in our bodies!
A few amazing facts about your gut:
2/3 of our immune system is located in and around our digestive system
We make more neurotransmitters in our gut than we do in our brains!
90% of your bodies serotonin (which affects mood) is made in the gut
The entire digestive tract is around 29 feet long
Cortisol greatly affects our microbiome
Hippocrates once said "All disease begins in the gut" and research over the past several decades has confirmed that most illnesses begin with an unhealthy or poorly functioning digestive system. Gut health dramatically affects our well-being; immunity, mood, skin, and hormone balance are greatly affected by our digestive system, making it essential to keep it nourished and healthy.
With stress on the rise and more environmental toxins (pollution) than ever, gut-related diseases and food allergies are increasing. So how can you support and repair your gut and prevent or reverse gut-related diseases? Two of the keys to cultivating a healthy digestive system is reducing inflammation and increasing absorption. Here are a few tips from my three-phase Gut Health Protocol:
Strengthen The Gut Lining:
Experiment with eliminating inflammatory foods from your diet to find what your "trigger" foods are. Common inflammatory foods include conventional wheat, dairy, corn, soy, and refined sugar.
Reduce exposure to environmental toxins. Eliminating harmful chemicals from your home and personal care products is a good start!
Consume home-made bone broth, the collagen, vitamins, and minerals found in bone-broth are proven to strengthen and repair the gut lining.
Curcumin, the active ingredient in the spice turmeric, reduces overall inflammation and works wonders for healing inflammatory triggered gut-dysbiosis.
Balance The Good Bacteria In The Gut:
Consume probiotic-rich (fermented) foods daily-Refrigerated sauerkraut, kimchi, or any fermented vegetables are excellent sources. Add 1-2 tablespoons (or more!) daily to meals.
Talk to your doctor about taking probiotic capsules. Probiotics can be taken for up to 28 days at a time, 2-3 times a year, to maintain gut health. Ask your doctor if probiotics are safe for you, and what he/she recommends for dosage.
Talk to your doctor about taking digestive enzymes. Enzymes are one of the easiest and most beneficial ways to help digestion. Digestive enzymes help break down food and improve the entire digestion process.
Promote Strong Digestion:
Get alkalized! Start each morning out with a glass of warm water and fresh lemon or lime. Squeeze a tablespoon of lemon juice into the water and drink before consuming anything else. You can also try adding one tablespoon of raw apple cider vinegar to an 8-ounce glass of warm water and drink it about 15-30 minutes before a meal. (Long-term use of ACV water is not suggested due to its effect on tooth enamel.)
Ask your doctor or a certified herbalist about taking "digestive bitters." These have been used in traditional cultures for thousands of years to improve digestion. (They also make for a refreshing drink!)
These are just a few of the highlights from my Gut Healing Protocol, hopefully, this will give you a few tools to start supporting your digestive system. If you feel you need more guidance on healing your gut, contact me for a free consultation to learn if this program is right for you!