7 Tips for Restoring Your Digestive Health
Food is a very important component of digestive health. Ever notice that you’re feeling run-down, achy, or bloated after a few days of overindulgence? Too much fat, sugar, salt, or alcohol can make you feel like you’re not quite yourself. If you’re looking for ways to feel better, here are some tips to help you restore your digestive health.
Adding more fiber to your diet can help to jumpstart a sluggish digestive system. Fiber helps keep everything moving, and it’s an important tool to move toxins out of your body. The typical American diet is filled with foods high in sugar, salt, and fat, which are generally devoid of healthy fiber. These processed foods have been shown to decrease the bacteria in your digestive system. Opting for more whole foods will help ease a stressed gut.
Add Probiotics & Fermented Foods
Fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, miso, etc., contain healthy bacteria to naturally boost harmony in your gastrointestinal tract. Yogurt also contains plenty of probiotics to help reset your gut, just watch out for yogurt with lots of sugar. If you find it difficult to eat enough foods that contain probiotics, a probiotic supplement can do wonders to keep you feeling happy and healthy.
Cut out Sugar & Artificial Sweeteners
Excess sugar and artificial sweeteners aren’t good for your body in general, but they’re especially bad for your digestive system. Eating too much sugar can lead to the overgrowth of harmful bacteria in your gut, so try to limit your intake to 25 grams (for women) or 37.5 grams (for men). Studies have shown that artificial sweeteners also alter the gut microbiome, which is why artificial sweeteners are more likely to cause glucose intolerance than natural sugars.
This is usually easier said than done but try to take a few minutes out of your busy day to meditate, do some yoga, or practice mindfulness. It can do wonders for your health. Stress can lead to intestinal permeability (aka leaky gut syndrome), which causes inflammation.
The direct link isn’t clear, but scientists have found a definitive correlation between exercise and gut health. The general belief is that exercise can reduce stress hormones, which affects the makeup of bacteria in your digestive system.
Get Enough Sleep
Your body can’t work at an optimum level if you’re exhausted. It may feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done, but if you don’t allow your body enough time to rest and regenerate each night, you won’t feel your best. Studies have shown that a lack of sleep alters the microbial balance in your gut. Make an effort to go to sleep half an hour before you normally do, and keep moving the time back a half an hour at a time until you’re getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night.
Water works very well to speed digestion, and staying hydrated is one of the easiest digestive tips. Fluids work with fiber to move solids through your system, and drinking fluids other than water can have undesirable side effects. Carbonated beverages can cause heartburn, juices have way too much sugar without the fiber of fruit, caffeine in coffee and tea acts as a diuretic, etc. Stick to water for the most health benefits! If you have trouble drinking enough water throughout the day, try flavoring it with citrus or berries.
These are just a few ideas to boost your GI wellbeing, but if you’re having symptoms or experiencing frequent intestinal discomfort, contact our team at Digestive Health Reno today.Back to "Blog"