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Tips for Improving Gut Health

As the awareness of health and wellness increases, folks all around the world are looking at improving their immune system. While we dose ourselves regularly with vitamin C, one key factor that is often overlooked is taking care of our gut health.

The gut, otherwise known as the gastrointestinal tract, plays a vital role in overall well-being. Our gut microbiomes are home to trillions of microorganisms collectively called the gut microbiota. In this blog post, we’ll look more closely at these little unsung heroes that help us stave off infections and viruses, and how you can improve your gut health and overall well-being.

Understanding Gut Health

A proper functioning gut is crucial to our well-being. The gastrointestinal tract includes the stomach, small and large intestines, and other associated organs. The community of microorganisms that live in our gut has a profound impact on our various physiological functions.

For one, the gut is responsible for nutrient absorption from food. It is also a critical component of your immune system, staving away viruses and nasty bacteria to prevent infections and illness. A balanced gut microbiota maintains the body in a state of balance called homeostasis, reducing the likelihood of gastrointestinal issues like bloating, gas, indigestion, or diarrhea.

Imbalances in the gut also contribute to mental issues like anxiety and depression. A healthy gut will also regulate inflammation, a condition that has been linked to several chronic conditions like joint pain, insomnia, and frequent infections.

Diet and Gut Health

You are what you eat, and for a healthy gut, you’ll need a healthy diet. Fruits and vegetables are crucial to a happy gastrointestinal system! Aim for a wide variety to ensure that you’re getting all the nutrients you need.

Also eat all types of colors as colored fruits and veggies like carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, and bell peppers contain beta carotene, a precursor to vitamin A and a powerful antioxidant that can protect against cancer and cell degeneration.

Your grain is your primary carbohydrate source, but there’s a difference between simple and complex carbohydrates. Simple carbs come from refined sources like white rice and bread, while complex carbs come from whole grain like oats, barley, quinoa, and brown rice.

Complex carbohydrates consist of long chain sugar molecules and will take longer to digest. They will also give you a more sustained, steady release of energy compared to simple carbs that will cause your blood sugar levels to spike, and your energy to crash.

The trillions of good bacteria living in your colon are called probiotics. These little soldiers are the microorganisms that go to battle for you when you’re exposed to bacteria, viruses, and pathogens. You can boost your levels of probiotics by eating fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, miso, tempeh, and kimchi.

If you have a weak gut and frequently have gastrointestinal issues, you can also consider probiotic supplements to help your body maintain balance.

Foods to Avoid for Better Gut Health

Certain foods can potentially harm your gut, disrupting your body’s balance and contributing to inflammation, illness, and diseases. One of the biggest contributors to illness are processed foods that often contain additives, preservatives, and chemicals that are low in fiber and other essential nutrients.

Saturated fats can also negatively impact your gut bacteria and contribute to stress and inflammation. Fried foods, animal fats, butter, and unhealthy oils often contain high amounts of saturated fats.

Excessive alcohol consumption can also impact gut health by harming your microbiota and increasing inflammation. Refined sugars and artificial sweeteners should be kept at a minimum, and excessive sodium intake has long been linked to cardiovascular and gastrointestinal problems.

However, the number one killer of your probiotics is antibiotic medication. If you’ve gotten an infection and cannot fight it off, your medical professional will likely prescribe antibiotics. Broad spectrum antibiotics target all bacteria indiscriminately, so you’ll be killing off your probiotics.

If you have finished a course of antibiotics, your digestive system will be vulnerable, and you can think about quickly replenishing your probiotic levels by introducing a supplement or by upping your intake of fermented foods.

Lifestyle Changes for Improving Gut Health

Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise does wonders for your body! Not only will it improve your muscular structure and cardiovascular health, but it will also significantly impact your gut health. You don’t have to run a marathon, but a brisk 30-minute walk or swim a day can greatly improve your overall health, especially if you lead a sedentary lifestyle.

Stress Management

Stress and gut health are connected through what is often referred to as the “gut-brain axis”. This communication system connects your gut with your brain and spinal cord. Stress levels can impact the gut and cause an imbalance, which makes you vulnerable to illness when your gut’s ability to defend against pathogens is decreased.

If you’re frequently stressed, try some stress management techniques like breathwork, meditation, yoga, or regular exercise.

Adequate Sleep

Sleep is when your body and mind rests and recovers, so be sure to get enough. If your sleep-wake cycle, called the circadian rhythm, is disrupted, your gut microbiota and digestive health can be affected.

Oral Health

Whatever goes through your mouth essentially ends up in your gut, like microbes, food particles, and oral bacteria. The composition of your saliva, which is influenced by oral health, can impact the types of microbes that eventually end up in your gut.

Practicing good oral hygiene and ensuring you have good dental habits can have a positive impact on your gut health.

Limiting Meat Consumption

While meat is a valuable source of protein and other essential nutrients, excessive consumption of meat, especially red or processed meat, can negatively impact your gut. In addition, red meat can cause an increase of the gut’s production of trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO), a substance linked to cardiovascular disease.

Understanding Prebiotics and Probiotics


As mentioned earlier, probiotics are the beneficial bacteria that live in your colon. These live microorganisms are responsible for helping you fight off infections, viruses, nasty bacteria, and they protect your gut’s cell walls from damage.

Probiotics also contribute to the breakdown and absorption of the nutrients that you get from the food you eat, helping with the digestion of carbohydrates and producing enzymes that promote more nutrient use.

In addition, probiotics ferment the dietary fibers that you eat, producing short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), which are a source of energy for your colon, supporting the growth of beneficial bacteria. To keep your probiotics happy, you’ll have to make sure you feed them enough. Enter prebiotics!


Prebiotics are what you feed to your probiotics. These are fermentable fiber-rich compounds that are often found in fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, and veggies.

Be sure to incorporate many fiber-rich foods to keep your gut bacteria happy and healthy. However, if you aren’t used to a high-fiber diet, gradually increase your intake, as eating too much fiber at once can cause gastrointestinal issues.

Nootropic Supplements for Gut Health

Nootropics are a group of compounds thought to potentially support cognitive function and overall brain wellness*. Through the gut-brain axis, nootropics such as certain mushrooms, gingko biloba, Bacopa Monnieri, and omega-3 fatty acids may support gut and cognitive wellness*.

Seeking Professional Help

If you’ve got a weak gut and frequently suffer from conditions like constipation, diarrhea, or abdominal pain, or food intolerances, you might want to consult with your healthcare provider. Here are some common gastrointestinal issues.

IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

Symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, or alternating between constipation and diarrhea. Symptoms may be triggered by certain foods, stress, or hormonal changes.

GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease)

Symptoms include heartburn, regurgitation, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, and a sensation of a lump in the throat. Symptoms often worsen after eating or lying down.

Celiac Disease

This autoimmune disease is triggered by gluten, and it includes digestive symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating, and weight loss. Other symptoms are fatigue, joint pain, and skin rashes.


This is when you’re having problems passing stools or abdominal discomfort and bloating. Most people have had constipation at some point in time or another, but chronic constipation can lead to complications like hemorrhoids.


A key to good health is a happy gut, and we hope this article gives you plenty of information on how to keep your body feeling its best.

Eat a healthy diet, get enough sleep and exercise, and incorporate more probiotics in your body and your gut will thank you!

Gut Health FAQs

What are the signs of an unhealthy gut?

Signs of an unhealthy gut include bloating, constipation, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue, and heartburn.

Can probiotic supplements replace natural sources?

Probiotic supplements can help maintain a healthy gut, but nothing beats natural probiotic foods like organic yogurt, kombucha, kefir, and kimchi. However, if you need a rapid intake of probiotics, like say, when you finish a course of antibiotics, supplements are an excellent way of restoring your body’s balance.

What is the impact of fiber on gut health?

Probiotics, the beneficial bacteria in your gut, eats prebiotics, which are found in fiber-rich food. By eating a diet that’s high in fiber, you’ll be keeping your probiotics happy.

How does gut health affect overall well-being?

The key to keeping your body in balance is optimal gut health. In addition, through the gut-brain axis, gut health is crucial to mental health.

Are there any quick fixes to improve gut health?

You can take a probiotic supplement to quickly improve gut health. However, what’s more important in the long run is a healthy diet and active lifestyle that focuses on overall well-being.

What foods should be avoided for better gut health?

Avoid processed foods, excessive red meat, foods high in sodium, refined sugar, fried foods, and saturated fat.

*It is important to note that the benefits of these products have not been conclusively proven. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, and the NHS has not made any guarantees about the efficacy of such products.