Nutrition

What Is Gut Health?

What Is Gut Health?

Gut health by simple definition is the balance of bacteria throughout our digestive tract.

The food that we take in needs to be broken down so that our body can utilize the nutrition that comes in.

The bacteria fights off infections like other bacteria and viruses that may be on our food. Our gut is sometimes referred to as our second brain as it can function independently. It directly communicates with our brain through the vagus nerve. Communicating with our brain helps to control our general health and well being, our gut produces far more of the neurotransmitters that are responsible for our mood and behavior than our brain does. These chemical messengers coordinate other functions in the body as well, so you can see that your gut is a pretty busy place.

What Makes a Healthy Gut?

Probiotics

These are the types of good bacteria that we want our gut to be made up of. We can find these in yogurts and other fermented foods and drinks. Prebiotics are important too, these foods lead to the production of good gut bacteria. These include honey, onions, bananas and leeks. Fiber is important to help maintain bowel regularity, making sure we eliminate waste from our body. We can get fiber in vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Aim for 25 grams of fiber for females and 38 grams of fiber for males.

Adequate Sleep

Sleep is when our body regenerates and given the size and importance of the gut, there’s a lot of repair to be done. 7-10 hours is recommended for adults. Consistent exercise is another key factor in a healthy gut and maintaining proper hormone levels. Avoid antibiotics unless absolutely necessary, they can wipe out both good and bad bacteria.

Foods To Avoid for Gut Health

Alcohol

If you have a gut problem, you will not resolve it and maintain alcohol consumption. Alcohol brings the good bacteria in our gut way down.

Foods With Added Sugar

Sugar literally feeds our bad bacteria. We need bacteria to break down the food in our body and we have plenty of it, 2-4 pounds, but you want them to be good guys.

Grains and Wheat Breads

Some of us lack the correct bacteria to break down certain grains. If you have gut issues, look at your bread and grain intakes.

Starchy Vegetables

If you feel bloating or gas after consumption, cut them out for 6 weeks and focus on leafy vegetables.

Gut Check: Gut Health Facts

  • There are more than 100 billion bacteria to every gram of intestinal content
  • We have over 10 times more microbes in our body than cells in our body
  • The gut has a self cleaning system. It kicks into an action an hour after we eat
  • 1.5-2kg of bacteria can be found in our gut

Improve Your Gut Health Today

Looking to improve your gut health? Contact the professionals at Fix Medical Group to learn more about our nutrition services in San Diego. Live in Arizona? We also provide nutrition services in Scottsdale.

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