What does it mean to have healthy microbiome? The human microbiome consists of 10-100 trillion microorganisms living together, mostly in our gut to support various functions throughout our body. This is a relatively new area of research and scientists are learning more about the importance of what makes up our microbiome everyday. Having a healthy gut microbiome has been linked to healthy weight, reduced inflammation, decreased risk of diseases such as certain cancers, ulcerative colitis, fatty liver, leaky gut, high blood pressure and many other factors influencing overall health. Here are some simple lifestyle and diet changes you can make today to increase the health of your microbiome.
It might seem shocking to hear that exercise or should I say simply moving can impact the health of your microbiome but it will and it doesn’t even take much. Going from sedentary to walking 30minutes or more has shown
to have an impact on the bacteria in your microbiome. When people began to exercise the amount of microorganisms increased as well as (and maybe even more importantly) the type. Certain types of microorganisms can be more effective at combating inflammation which can help in muscle recovery. It can also help with insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes. Just another reason to get up and move!
2. Avoid Antibiotics
Using antibiotics only when absolutely necessary is important. Antibiotics are made to kill bacteria, both good and bad bacteria. This means your gut will have to rebuild and reestablish the good bacteria after a round of antibiotics. Reestablishing the healthy balance of bacteria can take months or even years.
This can leave you more susceptible to infections later on down the road. Be sure if you are taking antibiotics to always follow it with probiotic rich foods and supplements.
3. Eat More Plants
Red meat and sugary carbohydrates can hurt the healthy bacteria and encourage the growth of less healthy bacteria in our gut. Eating a diet high in vegetables, fruits, and fiber feeds the good bacteria and increases the health of our microbiome.
Prebiotics are soluble fibers that promote the growth of healthy bacteria in our gut. Basically the prebiotics feed the probiotics and help make your bowel movements more frequent. These foods include raw garlic, onions, Jerusalem artichoke and leeks. You can also buy prebiotics as a supplement.
Probiotics are living microorganisms that provide a health benefit to our gut. There are many types of bacteria and having a good variety is important because they help with different functions in the body. Two common strains are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. They can help with noticeable digestion symptoms such as diarrhea as well as less notable things such as immunity, oral health and absorption of nutrients in our diet. Food high in probiotics include fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt, kombucha, and kefir. You can also get them in supplement form, just make sure and buy quality probiotics because they can be expensive and some are not as great as others. I like Vitamin Bounty – Pro 25 Probiotic – 13 Probiotic Strains, 25 Billion Organisms Per Serving, although there are plenty that you can choose from.
If you have any questions about gut health make a consultation with me.
*We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”