5 Practical Tips to Maintain a Healthy Gut (easy and effective)

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Your gut, or gastrointestinal tract, plays a critical role in your body. It's not just about digestion; it impacts your immune system, mood, mental health, skin conditions, and overall health.

The human gut contains a large variety of microbes, fungi, viruses, microorganisms, and different types of bacteria, which form what is known as your gut microbiome. (1)

Vital Info:

  • The stomach, colon, and intestines form the gut, which breaks down food, absorbs nutrients, and rids the body of waste.
  • The gut contains a large variety of microbes, fungi, viruses, microorganisms, and different types of bacteria.
  • An unhealthy gut often manifests itself through a range of physical and mental symptoms.
  • Your immune system and your gut are closely connected, with the gut playing a pivotal role in maintaining immunity.

Breaking Down Gut Health and Gut Microbiome

Your stomach, intestines, and colon are all parts of your gut (aka gastrointestinal system). It breaks down food, takes in the nutrients it needs, and gets rid of waste.

The types of gut bacteria that reside in our gut may contribute to certain illnesses. Some bacteria are bad for our health, but many good bacteria exist that work to keep our bodies healthy.

Since 70–80% of immune cells are in the gut, there is a complex relationship between the intestinal bacteria, the gut epithelial layers, and local mucosal immunity. (2)

The types of bacteria in your digestive system can be affected by a variety of things, such as the foods you eat. What we eat can change the microbiome in our intestinal environment in the short and long run.

The Importance of Gut Health

Research indicates that the gut microbiome can heavily impact the organs in our bodies. (3)

Gut health may be connected to:

  • Heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Sleep
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (or inflammatory bowel disease)
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Obesity
  • The immune system

A healthy digestive tract ensures efficient nutrient absorption.

Maintaining good digestive health may also positively influence metabolism rates, which could support weight loss and weight management.

gut health illustration

What Are The Signs of an Unhealthy Gut?

An unhealthy gut often manifests itself through a range of physical and mental symptoms. (4)

Common signs of an unhealthy gut may include:

  • Low mood
  • Bloating
  • Gas
  • Heartburn
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

In the modern world, the following can have an impact on our gut:

  • Age
  • Environment
  • Lack of exercise
  • Lack of sleep
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • Stress or anxiety
  • Excessive smoking
  • Using antibiotics

If you are frequently experiencing any of these signs, consult your doctor or a registered dietitian.

Suggested Reading: Worst Food Ingredients for Your Immune System

The Immune System Takes a Hit

Your immune system and your gut are closely connected, with the latter playing a pivotal role in maintaining immunity.

Low gut health may hinder the function of the immune system and increase systemic inflammation. (5)

Mental Health Suffers Too

The impact of poor gut health isn't confined to physical wellness alone; it can extend into mental well-being too.

Your intestines produce neurotransmitters like serotonin, often referred to as 'the happy chemical,' as it contributes to overall well-being and happiness

The intricate relationship between the gut and the brain suggests that an unhealthy gut may trigger mood disorders like anxiety, depression, or emotional stress. (6)

man spreading arms

5 Practical Ways to Maintain a Healthy Gut Daily

There are various lifestyle and dietary changes that can be made to improve and maintain a healthy gut microbiome.

Healthy Diet

To foster a healthy gut, consider increasing your intake of fiber-rich produce and whole grains.

Incorporating fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes facilitates digestion by nourishing beneficial bacteria.

Eating whole foods and whole grains instead of highly processed carbs can help promote good cholesterol levels, reduce the risks of diabetes, and maintain good health conditions in your body.

A process in which yeast or bacteria break down the sugars within food is known as the fermentation process.

The bacteria in fermented foods are known to offer various health benefits.

Fermented foods include:

  • Yogurt
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha
  • Sauerkraut
  • Kefir
  • Tempeh
lady enjoying dinner

Prebiotics, Probiotics and Postbiotics

Prebiotics are "food" for good bacteria in the digestive system, while probiotics are live good bacteria.

Both prebiotics and probiotics can be found in various food sources or in the form of supplements.

Prebiotics contain a form of dietary fiber that promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in the body.

Consistently taking a prebiotic or probiotic supplement may be an effective way to improve gut health.

Examples of prebiotic food sources include artichokes, garlic, bananas, onions, whole oats, and apples.

Postbiotics are slightly different. Postbiotics are the byproducts created by the fermentation that occurs in the intestines as a result of probiotics.

When probiotics feed on prebiotics, postbiotics are produced, which makes them a form of ‘waste’ of probiotics.

However, this waste is not a bad thing, as it does play an essential role in promoting a healthy gut.

Common examples of postbiotics are:

  • Enzymes
  • Organic acids
  • Carbonic substances
  • Bacteriocins

Regular Exercise

The power of regular exercise extends beyond just physical fitness.

Walking and cycling can help move digestive substances through the body by stimulating the muscles in the gut.

Research indicates that regular, moderate exercise may strengthen health-boosting gut microbes and maintain gastrointestinal wellness. (7)

Stay Hydrated

Not only does drinking plenty of water help increase the diversity of gut bacteria, but it also assists in breaking down food, which helps your body absorb nutrients.

Water may also be able to reduce gastrointestinal infections. (8)

Eat Slowly

Eating slowly and carefully can help minimize digestive discomforts like gas, pain, and bloating.

Introducing Beta Glucan for Gut Health

Beta Glucan is a fiber-like molecule that acts as an immuno-modulator as it activates every cell in the body to be as efficient as possible.

The immune system may be strengthened as a result of this activation, which stimulates the response of adaptive immune cells.

Beta glucan causes immune cells to enter a higher state of readiness, making them more ready to fight off intruders when the body comes into contact with foreign pathogens that are recognized as non-self.

It originates from various plant sources like barley, oats, and mushrooms, and is available in supplement form.

It has been clearly stated how important glucans are in food processing, such as making bread, yogurt, and pasta. Glucans should have a big effect on the changes in the gut bacteria and, in turn, on human health, according to a number of studies. *

Deep Dive: The Detrimental Impact of Sugar on the Immune System

How Beta Glucan Works in Your Body

What makes beta glucan unique? It all comes down to how it interacts with our bodies once consumed. This humble compound takes a journey through our digestive tract where it meets up with some important friends - macrophages.

Macrophages, found in our gut wall, play an essential role in sparking immune responses against harmful pathogens. When they encounter beta glucans, these cells get activated, enhancing overall health.

As the immune system gets ‘smarter’, it becomes stronger thanks to beta glucan and has the ability to perform as best as possible.

Beta Glucans: The Prebiotic Powerhouses

In addition to triggering immune responses, research suggests that beta glucans have prebiotic properties too. This means they provide nourishment for beneficial bacteria residing within our guts, thereby promoting a balanced microbiome – a key factor for optimal health.

A healthy intake of beta glucans can help maintain peak performance levels of your immune system while fostering improved digestion due to its interaction with vital components of the gut ecosystem.

Top Benefits of Beta Glucan

The health-boosting benefits of beta glucan are immense, especially when it comes to improving gut health. This natural supplement is a powerhouse that infuses your body with vital nutrients for optimal digestive system performance. *

As the glucan molecule may help mobilize the immune system, it can increase the production of white blood cells, which may help reduce allergic responses in daily life. *

Beta 1 3d glucan has been stated to potentially help wounds heal, speed up the body's recovery from surgery, reduce the damage done to tissues by arthritis, and reduce the swelling in the nose caused by allergies. *

Conclusion: Key Points and Recommendations

The pursuit of a healthy gut doesn't have to be overwhelming. Exploring the importance of habits like diet, and exercise may help sustain intestinal wellbeing.

However, there is another key player that can have a significant impact - beta glucan. Beta Glucan has been demonstrated to be beneficial for immune function and stimulating the growth of helpful bacteria in the digestive system.

FAQs in Relation to How to Maintain a Healthy Gut

How do I keep my gut healthy?

Maintaining a healthy gut involves eating a balanced diet rich in fiber, staying hydrated, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and managing stress levels.

What are the signs of an unhealthy gut?

An unhealthy gut may present symptoms like bloating, constipation or diarrhea, heartburn, excessive gas, and unexplained weight changes.

What are the 3 signs of a healthy gut?

A regular bowel movement pattern without discomfort such as bloating or cramps is one sign. Other indicators include having clear skin and feeling energized due to proper nutrient absorption.

(*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease)

Still have questions?

Our ACES Team is always there to help.

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