Contributed by: Priyaish Srivastava
Did you know?
- The gut and mind are BFFs, what goes into the gut directly impacts the brain health, and any mental health complication such as depression directly impacts the guts
- 75% of the immune system resides in the stomach. Thus, it is super important to focus on gut health
- Your stomach is home to tens of trillions of good bacteria that help break down food and absorb essential nutrients
- Women often get digestive issues just before their periods
- Inflammatory skin diseases (eczema or psoriasis) and poor digestive health are interconnected
- An unhealthy gut is not only a symptom of depression but can be the root cause of depression
- Stress has a direct impact on gut health
Deep inside the digestive system reside trillions of bacteria that work round the clock to keep you healthy. Following are some of the most important functions that the intestines perform:
- Food breakdown for nutrient absorption
- Maintaining healthy body weight
- Keeping blood sugar and cholesterols levels in check
- Boosting immunity
A compromised or ill gut health can cause the following symptoms:
- Heartburn or acid reflux
- Gas and farting
- Belching, sometimes bringing up bitter or foul-tasting fluid or food
- Foul-smelling breath
- Coughing and hiccup
Along with daily diet, many prefer to rely on probiotic supplements as a reinforcement for their intestinal health. Not that it’s wrong, but these supplements alone cannot suffice. To ensure optimum functioning of your guts, you need to take additional yet easy-to-follow steps, that’ll keep your tummy happy and healthy.
Hacks for a comfortable gut
Nature’s got your back
Eating fresh and healthy foods helps in maintaining the well-being of the entire body. From promoting cardiac health to the production of healthy blood cells, a good diet contributes to all of them.
Whole-grain foods such as barley, oats, quinoa, and porridge are rich in fibre, that aids in promoting healthy digestion and smoother bowel movement
Veggies such as spinach, kale, cabbage, carrots, broccoli, beans, and cauliflower are rich in nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin A, fibre, and folate. These nutrients are not only essential for a healthy gut but also contribute to the healthy functioning of other organs.
Fruits and nuts are full of a variety of nutrients essential for a healthy gut. Regular intake of fruits or homemade fruit juice can significantly boost your gut health. The same goes for nuts such as walnuts, cashew, almonds, and pistachios. But remember, don’t overdo with nuts. The recommended serving of nuts is what fits into the palm of your hand.
Healthy teeth = healthy gut
Poor oral hygiene can build up bad bacteria and cavities in the mouth. The cavities get stuck with food, which then rots and produces additional bacteria as well foul breath.
These bacteria can travel to the stomach via fluids, foods, and saliva, and their impact on the stomach can give rise to a host of stomach ailments.
That’s why brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day (morning & before bedtime) to minimize the chances of bacteria of the mouth taking your digestion for a toss.
Fermented foods are a great bet
Fermented foods are loaded with good bacteria such as lactobacilli, and are beneficial for your tummy. Some of the easily available fermented foods include:
- Sauerkraut (finely cut and fermented raw cabbage fermented)
- Kefir (fermented milk)
- Kombucha (fermented black or green tea)
- Tempeh (made from fermented soybeans)
More delicacies for a healthy gut
Including foods rich in polyphenols in your diet helps in reducing inflammation, controlling blood pressure & cholesterol levels. Polyphenols are plant-based molecules and act as fuel for intestinal microbes. Some of these easily available yummies include:
- Dark chocolate
- Red grapes
- Green tea
Spice up your meals and avoid artificial sweeteners
Spices like garlic, ginger, cinnamon, and turmeric are commonly used to add flavour to meals, but that’s not the limit of their benefits. These spices are rich in antioxidants and vital nutrients that help in eliminating bad bacteria in the guts.
Studies prove that artificial sweeteners negatively impact the gut microbiome and increase blood sugar levels by obstructing insulin secretion. Thus, it is recommended to avoid or reduce the consumption of artificial sweeteners, especially if you or anyone you know is a diabetic.
An unhealthy gut can affect the functioning of the entire body and hinder the performance of several functions. Stomach ailments can also reduce your metabolism and can even have a serious impact on your health.
Thus, you must seek expert consultation and keep a regular check on your digestive health by opting for stomach tests, especially if you experience the symptoms of an unhealthy stomach, frequently. The above-mentioned are a few hacks recommended by experts that are extremely helpful in promoting stomach health, whether you have an ailment or not. Remember, a healthy stomach = happy you!
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