Microbiome and Gut Health

Harvesting Aliens

Microbiome

There are trillions of bacteria in your gut.  The ecosystem of bacteria located within our bodies are called the microbiome.  Gut microbiome regulates your immunity, appetite and inflammation.

Many diseases can be traced in some way back to the gut and health of the microbiome.  Poor gut health can contribute to autoimmune diseases and disorders like arthritis, dementia, heart disease and cancer.  The state of microbiomes are determined by the foods we eat, how we sleep and our stress levels.

Diet plays a big part in establishing gut health and supporting the microbiome’s good bacteria.  Gut health can impact how your body extracts nutrients from your diet and stores fat. Gut microbiota seem to play an important role in obesity and changes in bacterial strains in the gut have been shown to lead to significant changes in health and body weight.

  • Obese – Higher levels of Firmicutes bacteria (Starve them).
  • Lean – Higher levels of Bacteroidetes bacteria (Feed them).

Know the right foods to feed the right bacteria.

Probiotics

PRO (for) BIOTICS (Life)

  • You have 400 different strains of friendly bacteria, yeast and friendly fungus living symbiotically.  These live bacteria and yeasts are good for your health, especially your digestive system.
  • Overgrowth leads to Yeast (Candida), Fungus (toenail fungus), Bacteria (infection).
  • The balance between the microbiome depends on your food.
  • Symptoms of imbalance include constipation, gas, bad breath and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO, bloating after a meal).

Know the right foods to promote probiotics.

Feeding Aliens

Feed Bacteroidetes (lean) bacteria with:

  • Resistant starch like – Sweet potato, yam, raw banana and arrowroot.
  • Include foods rich in polyphenols like – blueberries, clove, garlic, kale and spinach.
  • Healthy fats like – grass fed butter, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil.
  • Whole pieces of fruit, not juice.
  • Fresh vegetables.
  • Food high in Omega-3 fatty acids like – wild caught fish, cage-free eggs.
  • Herbs and spices like – tumeric, ginger, basil.

 

Starve Firmicutes (obese) bacteria by avoiding:

  • White carbs.
  • Trans fat/hydrogenated fats like – fried foods, processed/packaged products.
  • Added sugars.

 

Probiotics – include with your meal:

  • Sauerkraut.
  • Kimchi.
  • Miso.
  • Natto.
  • Kefir
  • Kombucha.

Other Ways You Can Establish a Strong Microbiome

Lower Stress and Exercise More

Stress is your body’s way of responding to any kind of demand or threat.  The stress response is the body’s way of protecting you.  If you tend to get stressed frequently, your body may be in a heightened state of stress most of the time and that can lead to serious health problems. Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body, including suppressing your immune system.

Exercise is a natural stress reliever that can help lower inflammation, balance hormones and strengthen the immune system.

You are in Control

Fortunately you are in control of your gut health.  By improving your diet, eating plenty of anti-inflammatory foods, lowering stress and exercising regularly, you can support your body’s microbiome and work towards a healthier you.