What is the Gut Microbiome?
We bandy around the term “gut microbiome” so often, but do we truly understand its significance? It is the variety of microorganisms in your gastrointestinal tract, primarily in the intestines. This includes more than 1,000 kinds of bacteria and potentially unwanted organisms such as yeast and parasites. Every one of us will have a different microbiome.
There are Beneficial Bacteria
We have numerous strains of bacteria inside our digestive system that help our immune system, reduce inflammation, keep other organisms at bay, protect us from heart disease, keep our serotonin levels optimum, and even decide how much carbohydrate and cholesterol we absorb! The strains we are most familiar with are the Bifidobacterium and lactobacillus species. These are the ones that end up in our probiotics.
What Can Cause Issues in Your Gut?
Yeasts and Parasites can cause issues whilst it is normal to have some of these, and they may not cause any symptoms for most; other people experience many symptoms that would be classed as IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). Suppose we can identify through testing what the microbiome looks like. In that case, we can work to rebalance it with changes in food, lifestyle and some short-term supplementation. Functional testing often provides the answer for us. Ideally, we will run a stool test to see exactly what the microbiome looks like. It is a comprehensive test, and whilst it would not replace a colonoscopy, it gives a different perspective on what is going on.
Below are a few things you can do today to help improve your gut health.
8 Top Gut Health Tips for You:
- Feed your beneficial bacteria with fibre: brown rice, quinoa, GF Oats, fruit and vegetables, pulses, pectin, cold pasta, rice, and potatoes!
- Eat more plants: Chicory root, Dandelion root, Konjac root, Burdock root, Onions, Jerusalem artichokes, Garlic, Leeks, Asparagus, Red kidney beans, Chickpeas, Split peas, Cashews, Pistachios, Hummus
- Include fermented foods: Sauerkraut, Kimchi, Pickles, Yogurt, Kefir
- Take antibiotics only when absolutely necessary and take a probiotic in the billions afterwards.
- Limit alcohol and fizzy drinks.
- Avoid processed and ultra-processed foods which are low in fibre.
- Eat when relaxed and away from screens
- Finish eating 3 hours before you go to sleep
Embark on Your Gut Health Journey Today
If you would benefit from working with a professional to look at your gut health, then our team is here to help.
You can head to our online booking system for a free 15-minute consultation with Laura.
It’s a no-obligation appointment where we’ll discuss what you’re experiencing. We’ll then offer our advice and guidance on what treatment options would best help resolve the problem.