Digestive HealthWe look for ways to help you optimise your gut health
There are many variables that can affect digestive health. The incredible complexity of the gut and its importance to our overall health is being recognised as a major factor for overall health. Numerous studies demonstrate the links between gut health and the immune system, mood, mental health like anxiety and depression, hormonal disorders, autoimmunity disease, skin conditions, and cancer.
What is the gut microbiome?
The term “gut microbiome” refers to the microorganisms living in your intestines. A person has about 300 to 500 different species of bacteria in their digestive tract. While some bacteria are harmful to our health, many are incredibly beneficial to our mental and physical wellbeing.
Signs of an unhealthy gut
1. Digestive problems
Stomach disturbances like gas, bloating, burping, cramps, reflux, constipation, diarrhea, and heartburn can all be signs of an unhealthy gut.
This can be caused by parasites, bacteria, SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, candida, Helicobactor Pylori, Giardia, coeliacs disease or diverticulitis
2. Sugar cravings
A diet high in processed food and sugars can decrease the amount of good bacteria in your gut. This imbalance can cause increased sugar cravings, which can damage your gut still further. High refined sugar leads to inflammation in the gut which leads to gut imbalances.
3. Weight gain
Gaining or losing weight without making changes to your diet or exercise habits may be a sign of an unhealthy gut. An imbalanced gut can impair your body’s ability to absorb nutrients, regulate blood sugar, and store fat. Research links healthy gut microbiome with weight loss.
4. Sleep disturbances or constant fatigue
An unhealthy gut may contribute to sleep disturbances such as insomnia or poor sleep, and therefore lead to fatigue. The majority of the body’s serotonin (“happy hormones”)is made in the gut. Serotonin affects mood and sleep, so unbalanced gut flora affects emotions and sleep.
5. Skin problems
When the gut lining is damaged, this is known as “leaky gut”, where Inflammation in the gut caused by a poor diet or food allergies may cause increased “leaking” of certain proteins into the body, which can in turn cause conditions such as eczema and acne.
6. Autoimmune conditions
It’s thought that an unhealthy gut may increase systemic inflammation and alter the proper functioning of the immune system. This can lead to autoimmune disease where the body attacks itself.
7. Food intolerances
Food intolerances are the result of difficulty digesting certain foods (this is different than a food allergy, which is caused by an immune system reaction to certain foods). It’s thought that food intolerances may be caused by poor quality of bacteria in the gut. This can lead to difficulty digesting certain foods and symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and nausea.
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