7 Simple Tools to Improve Your Gut Health and Signs It Needs Some Love
We’ve all heard the saying “You are what you eat”, right? Well, many health practitioners agree it goes far beyond that. A more accurate phrase would be “You are what you DIGEST”. You could be eating all the “right” foods, but if you aren’t digesting those foods adequately or absorbing nutrients properly, all that kale won’t really help you now, will it?
Common Symptoms of Poor Digestive Health
- Constipation (less than 2-3 bowel movements per day; incomplete BMs)
- Abdominal Pain
- Undigested food in stool
- Fatigue and energy lulls around 2-3pm
- Brain fog
- Joint Pain
- Anxiety or depression
- Skin problems
Bring in Healing Foods
Focus on introducing healing foods into your diet that will help soothe the gut. Some therapeutic foods, especially for sensitive stomachs, are bone broth soups, coconut oil, roasted vegetables, organic meat, fermented foods, turmeric, ginger and licorice root. By choosing whole foods, ideally organic, you will naturally omit a lot of additives and sugars that contribute to digestive discomfort.
Add Digestive Enzymes and Probiotics
We produce digestive enzymes in our pancreas and even in our mouth, but over the years of abusing our guts with processed foods, sugar and overeating, these enzymes can start to deplete. Adding in enzymes will help you better digest your food so you can reap all the benefits of your healthy diet. Additionally, probiotics provide the friendly bacteria we need to keep our guts happy and healthy.
Address Common GI Disturbances
Certain foods such as gluten, dairy, soy, corn and eggs can contribute to digestive symptoms like the ones listed above. These common food allergens can also show up in other surprising ways, such as migraines, emotional imbalance and weight loss or gain.
Get A Clear Picture of the Root Cause
We have trillions of bacteria in our gut that help us digest our food and produce nutrients to keep us healthy. Unfortunately, this balance can easily be disturbed by a poor diet, alcohol, antibiotics, stress, glyphosate and other factors. If you’re struggling with GI symptoms, getting proper testing to determine the root cause can be extremely informative. Oftentimes our clients have an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria, parasites, fungal infections or other microorganisms that leave them feeling less than optimal. Testing takes the guesswork out of the equation, allows us to narrow down root factors and see what’s going on behind the symptoms you’re experiencing.
Monitor Your Poop
It might seem silly, but your poop tells you a TON about your gut health and the overall health of your body. We want “foot-long-floaters” that are passed effortlessly and form a lovely s-shape. Good visual right? Other things to keep an eye out for are undigested foods, which is a good sign you’re not breaking them down properly; also, changes in colour, mucus and stool that is hard and clumpy or too soft.
Stop Chugging All Your Water with Meals
Many people are surprised by this one but drinking lots of water with meals dilutes the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, which you NEED for a healthy gut. Keeping your digestive fire burning and your HCl up helps you digest proteins, while low acid will cause digestion to slow, allowing foods to ferment in the stomach, leading to irritating symptoms of indigestion.
Practice Mindful Eating
If you’re currently eating in a stressed state, on the run, while working or getting angry in traffic, this shuts down your digestive system! Staying present while eating, truly enjoying your food, chewing well and being thankful helps your body digest and utilize it better!
Thinking something might be off with your gut? Contact the clinic to find out more about our Complete Digestive Stool Analysis Testing and how we can help you feel more like yourself again!
Learn more about how to heal your gut here.