If you want to improve your gut health naturally, you need to know the different nutrition and lifestyle strategies for building and maintaining your gut integrity. Both of these aspects are critical for creating a hospitable environment for the trillions of microorganisms in your GI tract.
But why improve your gut health in the first place? Well, not only do your gut and microorganisms inside play a crucial role in digestion but they’re also extremely important for immune function, mental health, hormone balance, and more.
Various factors including a poor diet, chronic stress, and certain types of medications can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria and lead to various health problems. Here, you’ll discover natural ways to improve gut health.
Nutrition and Lifestyle Strategies for Improving Your Gut Health Naturally
Nutrition habits have a significant impact on the health of your gut. But if you want better gut health, you also need to incorporate lifestyle changes too. Keep reading to learn more about the strategies that can help you improve your gut health naturally.
Eat whole foods.
Eating a healthy and balanced diet is essential for maintaining good gut health. A diet rich in fruit, vegetables, healthy fats, and adequate protein can provide the necessary nutrients for your gut health to thrive. A whole-foods focused diet can also help reduce inflammation and oxidative damage in the GI tract, encouraging absorption of the nutrients you’re consuming.
And of course limit processed foods such as chips, soda, and fast food. When consumed regularly, these can be detrimental to your gut health. These foods are often high in sugar, fat, and artificial additives, which can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria and lead to inflammation.
Drinking enough water is essential for maintaining good gut health and elimination. Water helps lubricate the transit of waste and reduces friction in your intestines. Increased friction can cause irritation and may encourage constipation, but staying hydrated can help. Additionally, water helps flush out toxins and waste products from the body and keeps your other digestive organs, such as your liver and kidneys, healthy.
Movement is one of the most underrated and underused strategies for promoting better gut health—and you don’t need to be in the gym seven days a week to take advantage. Exercises like yoga, swimming, and pilates can help stimulate the vagus nerve, which is also referred to as the gut-brain axis. The vagus nerve is how your brain and gut communicate.
A strong vagus nerve (and strong communication) between your brain and gut is crucial for optimal function. Taking a walk can help reduce stress and may allow increased blood flow to the gut, which can aid in digestion.
Chronic stress can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria and lead to various digestive problems. As mentioned above, reducing stress helps to improve blood flow to the gut, which is necessary for your gut to be able to perform its vital functions. It can be easier said than done, but even starting small can help you take steps towards reducing stress. Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, yoga, meditation, or journaling can help you reduce stress levels and improve your gut health.
Get enough sleep.
Getting enough sleep is crucial for maintaining good gut health. Lack of sleep can disrupt the circadian rhythm, which can affect the balance of gut bacteria and lead to various digestive problems. The better sleep you get, the more you promote the health of your microbiome and body. Interestingly, research has also shown that healthier GI function also promotes a better quality sleep, so the momentum you create will just keep building to improve your overall health.
Eat probiotic-rich foods.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria, and these it’s important to consume beneficial bacteria to ensure a proper balance in the gut microbiome. Beneficial bacteria can be found in fermented foods such as yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, and kefir are rich in probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that help maintain a healthy gut microbiome.
Generally, these foods should play a big role in your diet, unless you have SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). In that case, you may need to limit foods (like fermented foods) that encourage this bacteria to proliferate temporarily.
Improve Your Gut Health for Whole Body Health
Hopefully these not-so-secret tips on how to improve your gut health naturally helped you. Improving your gut health impacts your overall well-being, and it requires a blend of diet changes and lifestyle strategies. Focusing on eating whole foods, staying hydrated, exercising regularly, managing stress, getting enough sleep, and taking probiotics and prebiotics are natural ways to improve gut health.
By incorporating these changes, you can promote a healthy gut microbiome, reduce GI symptoms, and enjoy better overall health.
If you’re dealing with chronic health gut health issues like bloating, reflux, elimination issues, and more it’s time to take an empowered step to better health. Join Gut Restore School, an 8-week, self-directed course with nutrition and lifestyle strategies intentionally designed to help you restore your gut integrity.