What the gut!? How an unhealthy gut may be holding you back from your physical and mental potential.
With numerous new research being performed and studied everyday on health-related issues, our gut health system seems to be taking center stage. From across the board, doctors, nutritionists, naturopaths, and pretty much the whole health community seem to agree, our gut system is essential to long lasting energy and longevity.
With today’s “nutrition filled” western diet filled with trans fats, modified corn starch, preservatives and many other goodies, our health and more specifically our gut seems to be completely undermined in the whole process. More than ever, previously unknown diseases such as Crone’s, leaky gut and many others have been plaguing our western societies and in the process destroying the lives of many who are affected by it. Great philosopher Hippocrates once said, “all disease starts in the gut” and this statement might be in fact reality.
How important is our gut to our overall health? The answer is very important. With an estimated 100 trillion bacterial cells living in our stomachs, our gastrointestinal system is responsible for a wide array of many health issues pertaining to not only our bodies but our brains also. A poor imbalance of bad bacteria versus good bacteria in the gut can have a negative impact on the health of our digestive and immune system by decreasing our body’s capacity to properly absorb vitamin and mineral intake, hormone regulation, efficient immune response and our overall mental health. (Lord, 2015)
What is of interest here is how physical problem such as a disruption in the gut, can have an impact or effect our very psyche. The Enteric Nervous System or ENS, is a group of 100 million cells that are connected to an individual’s gastrointestinal tract. The main purpose of this group of cells is to control digestion by communicating back and forth between our guts and brains. In doing so, when an individual is having disruptive physical problems in his or her stomach, then the messages processed by the gut to the central nervous system (CNS) are that of irritation and inflammation which can cause triggers in a person’s mood and motoring skills.
In other words, when we eat foods that contain unhealthy processed sugars and fats, then this will cause inflammation in our guts which will undoubtedly provoke irritation and send negative signals to our brains. In contrast, when we eat foods that are natural and essential to our overall well-being, then we will lower inflammation in the gut and improve our physical and mental health. To prove this, a study made in 2015 in regards to mental health and more specifically, serotonin, proved that disruptions in the stomach due to malnutrition may in fact send negative signals to the CNS (Central Nervous System) and provoke mood changes.
What can we do?
If you’re a person that has digestive problems, or just wants to live a healthier life, there certain things you can do to make your gut running as smoothly as possible.
1. The first thing (and the easiest) would be to take probiotics in the form of a pill or drink. These pills are entirely made by good bacteria and are meant to support our guts while balancing the equilibrium. (Tip) I would suggest to anybody buying these products, to not get anything under 10 billion probiotics.
2. EAT lots of fermented foods! These foods contain the magic elixir that feeds off bad bacteria while boosting the good!
A simple list of fermented foods:
* • Kimchi
* • Fermented sauerkraut
* • Kefir
* • Fermented tea
* • Raw milk or raw yogurt
3. Avoid eating processed food or sugar. Eating processed food and sugar will have a negative effect on your gut system by creating inflammation Trying to avoid these foods will help reduce the bad bacteria in your stomach while supporting the good! 4. Finally, according to some naturopaths and some nutritionists, there are some foods that do not digest well in our stomachs when eaten at the same time. What this means is that, because of the dietary enzymes found in some fruits, meats, and grains, certain foods are poorly absorbed when mixed together and this can create inflammation which can influence our CNS (Central Nervous system). If interested in the topic, you have an image down below that demonstrates what combinations are possible and which aren’t. For more, click on the link here: https://detoxinista.com/food-combining/, to know more about the topic. Lastly, whether it’s our guts, brain or biceps, our health should be viewed as one entire system. If one is affected, it will cause important damage to all other organs that support one another. Love and peace, Bryan Sa Pimentel __________________________________________________________________________________ References - http://www.navacenter.com/community/article-library/browse/2015/06/01/your-body%27s-second-brain---the-importance-of-gut-health - https://detoxinista.com/food-combining/