Reset + Revitalise: Gut Health 101

Often regarded as the body's 'second brain', our gut orchestrates a symphony of vital functions to keep us healthy and thriving. It is the bustling metropolis for trillions of microorganisms, collectively known as the microbiome. This intricate ecosystem within our digestive tract significantly contributes to maintaining our intestinal health.

From facilitating digestion and nutrient absorption to modulating immune responses and even impacting our mood, the gut serves as the control centre for many of our body's essential operations. Fostering a healthy and balanced digestive system is key to our overall wellbeing. 

A gentle yet effective gut microbiome reset can help us restore balance in our gut, improve digestion and support overall wellness. Read on for our top 7 tips on how to reset and revitalise your gut health.

1. Nourish Your Gut with a Balanced, Diverse Diet: 

The process of 'resetting' your gut involves removing any potential irritants or triggers that may be causing imbalances in the microbiome. This can include foods that are known to cause digestive issues, such as gluten, dairy and processed foods. A healthy and well-balanced diet is the foundation of good gut health. Diversity in the diet is key, as a wide variety of foods will ensure the supply of different nutrients and support the growth of different types of beneficial microbes in the gut.

Focus on incorporating plenty of fibre-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes into your diet. These high-fibre foods help to feed the beneficial bacteria in our gut, keeping them healthy and thriving.

2. Stay Hydrated: 

Drinking enough water is crucial for maintaining good gut health. Water helps to keep the digestive system running smoothly, preventing constipation and promoting regular bowel movements. Aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day, and increase your intake if you are physically active or in hot weather.

Avoid excessive alcohol consumption, which can irritate the gut lining and disrupt the balance of bacteria in our gut.

3. Protect with Prebiotics and Probiotics: 

Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide numerous health benefits when consumed. They help to restore balance in the gut microbiome and improve digestion. Incorporate probiotic-rich foods such as yoghurt, kimchi, sauerkraut and kefir into your diet or consider taking a multi-strain probiotic supplement.

Prebiotics are non-digestible fibre compounds that act as food for the good bacteria, or probiotics, in our gut. They help to stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria and support a healthy microbiome. Foods rich in prebiotics to incorporate in your diet include garlic, onions, leeks, oats, chicory root and bananas. 

4. Rest is Key: 

Chronic stress can have a negative impact on our gut health by disrupting the balance of bacteria in our gut. To reset and revitalise your gut, incorporate stress-reducing activities such as meditation, yoga or deep breathing into your daily routine. 90% of serotonin, the 'happy hormone', is produced in the gut, highlighting the importance of digestive wellness for our overall mood and mental wellbeing.

5. Move Regularly in Ways you Love:

Regular physical activity is not only important for our overall health but also for the gut microbiome. Movement helps to improve digestion and promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in our digestive tract. Every day, aim for at least 30 minutes of movement in ways you enjoy. 

6. Make Sleep a Priority:

Getting enough quality sleep is crucial for maintaining and promoting digestive wellness. Our gut bacteria follow a circadian rhythm, and disruptions in our sleep patterns can affect the balance of bacteria in our digestive tract. Aim for 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night.

7. Limit Artificial Sweeteners: 

Artificial sweeteners have been shown to disrupt the diversity of bacteria in our gut, leading to digestive issues and other health problems. Opt for natural sweeteners such as honey or maple syrup instead.

Caring for your gut encompasses many domains that are intricately intertwined with overall wellbeing. Always be mindful in listening to your body and being deeply conscious of the foods you consume and the lifestyle habits you develop. Prioritising digestive wellness can lead to a happier, healthier you. Go ahead and hit that reset button for a revitalised gut!