Why are gut bacteria important to your health?
The key to understanding gut health is that thousands of species of bacteria reside in your gut and some of them are friendly, while others are not. Our goal is to increase the growth of good bacteria and reduce or eliminate bad bacteria within your gut to supercharge your gut health and increase the immune system naturally. This in turn will mean you can have more energy, lose weight, and reverse most common chronic diseases.
Keep in mind most bacteria in the gut belong to one of four groups or phylum: Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria, or Proteobacteria. Therefore, the most common question I get is what kind of probiotic should I take to improve my gut health? The simple answer is, you should take a daily probiotic that contains those four groups of species just mentioned. The variety of species and the number of colonies within the probiotic is crucial to your gut health.
For instance, the Firmicutes phylum is composed of more than 200 different bacteria such as Lactobacillus, Bacillus, Clostridium, Enterococcus, and Ruminicoccus. The rule of thumb is that the probiotic should contain one or more species within this group. Each group of good bacteria plays a key role in your health and requires different nutrients for growth.
Research studies show that friendly gut bacteria are important for digestion. They are also important in destroying harmful viruses, bacteria, and other microorganisms. In addition, they produce vitamin K, folate, and short-chain fatty acids, which are essential for optimal health. Short-chain fatty acids are the main nutrient source for the cells in your colon. They can be absorbed into your blood, where they promote metabolic and digestive health, reduce inflammation, and are known to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.
What happens when the gut flora is compromised?
If the gut flora contains too many harmful bacteria and not enough friendly bacteria, an imbalance can occur, known as dysbiosis. Dysbiosis, a reduction in gut flora diversity, has been linked to immunocompromised systems, insulin resistance, weight gain, inflammation, obesity, inflammatory bowel disease, and colorectal cancer.
Therefore, it’s vital to keep your gut bacteria within your gut balanced and as friendly and abundant as possible.
What can you do right now to improve your gut health?
The best thing you can do to strengthen your gut health is to eat daily prebiotic-rich foods. Prebiotics are a special kind of fiber that passes through the body undigested and promotes the growth and activity of healthy gut bacteria. A lack of prebiotics in the diet can harm your digestive health, which over time causes major health issues.
The rule of thumb is to eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, and seeds for proper prebiotic intake.
CLICK HERE to watch my top superfoods to heal leaky gut and improve overall health.
A recent study showed of 30 obese women found that eating prebiotic-rich foods for three months promoted the growth of the healthy bacteria Bifidobacterium and Faecalibacterium, which promoted weight loss. Studies also show foods rich in prebiotic fiber may play a role in reducing insulin and cholesterol levels.
I highly encourage you to eat these foods daily to heal your gut and boost the immune system effectively.
Foods high in prebiotics include:
- Nuts-almonds, pistachios, etc.,
- Seeds-flax seeds, chia seeds, etc.,