“The road to health is paved with good intestines!” ~ Sherry A. Rogers
Intestinal and digestive health is something that many people take for granted. The majority of our immune system is based on the gut, so it is especially important to make sure that it your digestive system is functioning properly. Stress, poor diet, certain drugs and aging can all affect the intestines and lead to discomforts and many illnesses. Gut flora is very important to overall health and well-being. By making sure to have a balance of good bacteria will help maintain good digestion.
Reoccurring cycles of antibiotics, birth control pills or other long-term meditations can damage the gut. Toxic substances in food, drink and other environmental influences also damage it’s composition. Good digestive health not only contributes to healthy skin, proper kidney function, but can act as a preventative for degenerative diseases, such as multiple sclerosis as well. Luckily, there are many different things that can be done to improve digestive health.
Here are 3 small changes that can create a positive impact on Digestive Health:
Many people have an understanding of how diet and nutrition affects the digestive system, but still continue to eat poor quality foods. Excessive sugar, refined carbs, fried foods and excessive alcohol consumption can all cause problems. Food compounds such as gluten, lectin, lactose and fructose can cause allergy symptoms in many people causing symptoms of respiratory problems, immune system T-cell response, digestive problems or even addictive like symptoms. Increasing the intake of fresh fruits and vegetables and eliminating overcooked and processed foods will greatly help to improve gut health.
Exercise is an important part of proper digestive health, and yet little people realize the strong connection. Exercise is necessary in order for the body to digest properly, it balances blood sugar and hormone production, improves liver function and boosts the immune system. 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise is essential to overall health and wellness.
Probiotics are live organisms that increase the number of beneficial bacteria in the digestive system and help to maintain a healthy balance in the intestines. Probiotics [quote_left]”Incorporating these recommendations into your life will begin to heal your body for the better.”[/quote_left]should be consumed daily as part of a healthy eating plan. The bacteria helps to support health by supporting immune function, enhancing the absorption of nutrients, and protecting against leaky gut syndrome. Leaky gut allows pathogens to penetrate the gut wall, which causes havoc on the body. Probiotics can be found either in supplement form or in real fermented foods, which can be made very easily and cost effectively. Kombucha, Kefir, Sauerkraut and yogurt are all examples of delicious probiotic foods and drinks that can be costly at health food stores, but easily made at home for pennies.
Kombucha is a common favorite but its high cost might make consuming a bottle a day seem expensive, so making your own is highly encouraged.
Promote digestive health: Make your own Kombucha!
- Purchase a culture, either online or at a health food store. If you know someone who brews their own they are usually more than willing to give you a piece of their culture.
- Boil a gallon of water and add 7-9 teabags of your choice.
- Dissolve a cup of sugar, remove the teabags and let it cool completely.
- Pour the cooled water into a gallon container (glass or ceramic crock) and add the culture.
- Make sure the tea is completely cooled before adding the culture because heat will kill the culture.
- Cover the container with a paper towel or tea towel secured with a rubber band and let it sit in a cool dry place for 7-28 days depending on your taste. (You can start tasting after a week and when it suits your taste you can bottle the tonic for the second ferment.)
- Let the bottled drinks sit for another 24-48 hours to get the carbonation.
- Once ready, chill in the fridge and enjoy!The bottles will continue to ferment when left out so once the second ferment is done you can put it in the fridge to stop the fermentation process. If the drink is fermented too long and become too vinegary tasting it can always be used as a vinegar substitute for cooking and salad dressings with a probiotic kick!
Incorporating these recommendations into your life will begin to heal your body for the better. Eliminating processed foods and including more fresh fruits and vegetables will reduce the number of toxins that are entering the system, while exercise will work to remove the toxins, stimulate the lymphatic system and cleanse the blood. Probiotic rich food and drinks help to promote healing and should be consumed daily.