The Importance of Gut Health by Melanie Waxman
"It is interesting to note that 70% of our immune system actually resides in the gut".
Maintaining a healthy gut is very important to help protect our body from the outside world. The gut works diligently to metabolize necessary nutrients and eliminate dangerous toxins. A healthy gut also keeps our mind sharp, energy levels high, and immune strong. It is interesting to note that 70% of our immune system actually resides in the gut. If we have poor gut health then we might experience depression, inflammatory issues, arthritis, poor energy levels, thyroid problems, bloating, weight gain, brain fog or food sensitivities.
A healthy gut has a strong intestinal lining that prevents foreign substances from making their way into the body. It is also the home to billions of microbiomes that help to prevent the overgrowth of bad bacteria. We are actually 90% bacteria and 10% human. Our gut cannot work efficiently if the flora becomes imbalanced and harmful bacteria is able to thrive or if the intestinal lining becomes inflamed and compromised.
Here are some simple suggestions to keep our gut in good health:
- Limit or avoid foods that can irrítate the system and cause inflammation. These include sugar, gluten, dairy, refined carbs, poor quality fried foods, synthetic sweeteners, tropical fruits, and alcohol. By removing inflammatory foods you give your gut a chance to rest, recover and regain strength.
- Include anti Inflammatory foods into your diet on a daily basis, such as leafy greens, shiitake mushrooms, walnuts, sea vegetables, flax and chia seeds, fresh herbs, celery, radishes, turmeric, ginger, berries, and sweet potatoes.
- Eat plenty of high fiber foods including whole grains, pulses, and a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables.
- Chose whole, living, organic, unprocessed foods.
- Introduce plenty of beneficial bacteria into your gut by incorporating fermented foods, such as, miso, sauerkraut, takuan pickle, tempeh, olives, sourdough bread, natto, and kimchee.
- Make sure to have prebiotic foods that contribute to an environment where beneficial bacteria can thrive. These include garlic, leeks, onions, dandelion greens, burdock, and asparagus.
Aside from eating a healthy and gut-friendly diet, make sure to avoid stressful situations, as stress directly impacts gut health, drink water, spend time outdoors and take to relax and do things you love. Your gut will thank you!
Melanie Waxman shares this delicious and healthy anti-inflammatory carrot, turmeric and ginger soup recipe to heal the gut and improve digestion.