The latest research has shown just how important your gut health is for your overall health. In fact, your Gut has been called a second brain. People often ask, “what is the Gut?” Usually, the Gut is considered everything from your stomach through the small intestine, ascending colon, transverse colon, and descending colon. The stomach is acidic, while the intestines are alkaline.
Natural Health Practitioners have a saying that “all disease begins in the gut.” It makes sense. Everything you eat goes through your gut. Along the journey, the food is broken down, and the nutrients are absorbed into your body. If the nutrients are unable to be absorbed, or if toxins accumulate in your system, you will not be healthy. If left long enough, it will lead to dis-ease in your body.
Typically, issues with the gut lead to such things as:
IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
Leaky Gut Syndrome
But, an unhealthy gut can be related to:
Mental Health Disorders
Gut health can even be related to brain issues:
- “Hidden in the walls of the digestive system, this “brain in your gut” is revolutionizing medicine’s understanding of the links between digestion, mood, health and even the way you think.”
- “Scientists call this little brain the enteric nervous system(ENS). And it’s not so little. The ENS is two thin layers of more than 100 million nerve cells lining your gastrointestinal tract from esophagus to rectum.”
- “The enteric nervous system doesn’t seem capable of thought as we know it, but it communicates back and forth with our big brain—with profound results.”
- “Our two brains ‘talk’ to each other, so therapies that help one may help the other,”
- “research suggests that digestive-system activity may affect cognition (thinking skills and memory)”
*(From Johns Hopkins)
So, what are some things that are bad for your gut?
- Not eating a diverse range of foods. Don’t get stuck eating the same five things every day. I’ve seen recently how people have a long list of what they can’t/won’t eat. Try not to be like that. We like to say, “eat your colors.” Eat various fruits and vegetables including the reds, yellows, and greens.
- Lack of pre-biotics. Most people know about probiotics, but pre-biotics are healthy, also. In other words, eat more fiber such as whole grains, veggies, and fruits. Good choices include onions, nuts, garlic, asparagus, beans, and lentils.
- Too much alcohol. Alcohol turns into sugar and becomes acidic. It also decreases the good bacteria and increases the bad bacteria. (If you like alcohol, you may want to go with red wine, because it has polyphenols.)
- Antibiotics. They kill all gut bacteria, including good and bad. In the past, doctors would prescribe antibiotics for almost everything. Only take them when you have to.
- Lack of exercise
- Lack of sleep
As a general rule of thumb, stay away from fast food, processed food, bread, pastries, cookies, crackers, soda, candy, ice cream, etc. Stay away from acidic foods. Try to eat more alkaline foods.
Some better choices:
Unrefined and cold-pressed oil
Nuts and seeds
My favorites for a healthy gut:
Some herbs for a healthy gut include:
Lastly, fermented foods are also healthy for your gut, because they contain probiotics:
If your gut is not healthy, you may see symptoms like:
Chronic Sinus Drainage
If you want to alleviate these symptoms, work on making your gut healthy. You can jump right in and do a detox or a fast, or you can take baby steps and start making small changes to your diet and exercise habits.
If you want to learn more about natural health, here are some doctors to look up. See what their views are.
- Dr. Oz
- Dr. Mark Hyman
- Dr. Andrew Weil
- Dr. David Perlmutter
- Dr. Jeffrey Bland
- Dr. Joseph Mercola
- Dr. Alan Christianson
- Dr. Al Sears
- Dr. Dean Ornish
- Dr. Joel Fuhrman
- Dr. Thomas O’Bryan
- Dr. Mark Stengler
- Dr. Michael Murray
- Dr. Leigh Erin Connealy
- Dr. Josh Axe
(I got a lot of information from this blog from Dr. Axe)
If you want to be healthy, eat right, exercise, get enough sleep, and try to de-stress. If you need help, contact me.