How to Improve Gut Health? Gut Health Problems and Symptoms
Thousands Of Clients Reversed Gut Issues With These Lifestyle Changes
Everyone talks about gut health as if it is a fad, but how many are truly taking steps to look after it? Medical science today shows us the link between poor gut health and almost every other aspect of our health and lifestyle conditions. It shows how poor gut health is linked with obesity, diabetes, cancer, low immunity, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, cognitive brain disorders, poor hair and skin quality, high triglycerides, high inflammatory levels, thyroid issues, endocrine issues, and so on. Yet, we see most people on the hunt for the next superfood, nutraceutical, vitamin, supplement, and fad program.
Our experience consulting clients across the globe through our You Care Wellness Program has taught us that sometimes you need to take a step back and build your gut health. It is not rocket science. Of course, if you are currently in a position where your gut health is messed up in a big way, you may need professional help and guidance. But if not, you can start making some simple lifestyle changes today and right now.
Your gut is known as your second brain. It is called the enteric nervous system because it is constantly corresponding with your brain. It may explain why when you get nervous or anxious, you feel it in your gut. 100% of IBS (irritated bowel syndrome) cases are related to chronic stress and anxiety. No medicine can fix it. At the most, your doctor is going to put you on an antidepressant or an anti-anxiety drug.
Gut Health Problems and Symptoms
Gut health issues or gut health problems are prevalent and can significantly impact a person’s well-being. Many individuals struggle with various common gut health issues that can cause discomfort and affect their overall quality of life.
One of the most commonly encountered gut health issues or gut health problems is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), characterized by symptoms like abdominal pain, bloating, and changes in bowel habits.
Another prevalent condition is gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which involves the backflow of stomach acid into the esophagus, causing heartburn and acid reflux.
Gut health issues also include conditions like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which encompasses Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, causing chronic inflammation in the digestive tract.
Additionally, food intolerances or sensitivities, such as lactose intolerance or gluten sensitivity, can lead to digestive discomfort and other gut-related symptoms.
Imbalance in gut bacteria, known as dysbiosis, is yet another gut health issue that can contribute to digestive problems. Understanding and addressing these gut health issues is crucial for individuals to seek appropriate medical guidance and adopt lifestyle changes that support a healthy gut.
Gut problems are a common occurrence and can significantly impact your overall well-being. Many people experience a range of gut problems that can cause discomfort and disrupt their daily lives. These gut problem symptoms may include indigestion, bloating, gas, and stomach discomfort after eating, constipation, diarrhea, acid reflux, IBS, and so on. Understanding the underlying causes of these gut problems and adopting lifestyle changes can help alleviate gut problem symptoms and promote better gut health.
How do we build great gut health?
I am going to share simple lifestyle tips and foods that can help. But like I said, if you have severe gut issues already, some of these foods may be worse for you. Ensure you are seeking professional guidance before adding these to your lifestyle.
Understand that everyone’s gut is different and unique. What may suit you does not have to suit someone else. Here are some changes that have worked beautifully for thousands of our clients with gut issues under the guidance of our integrative experts.
Eat a rainbow
Your diet has to be diverse. Why? Because your gut microbiome is diverse with trillions of different strains of bacteria. Make your plate look like a rainbow with various colored fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lentils, legumes, nuts, and seeds. More color means more diversity and, in turn, more food for your gut bacteria.
When you have trillions of different kinds of bacteria supporting human life, they need different nutrients. Having the same food all the time may not be sufficient. Whether it is beetroot, carrot, cucumber, purple cabbage, bell peppers, or so on – it doesn’t have to be fancy. Keep your plate simple, diverse, and colorful.
Cut down on refined sugar
One and two Indians suffer from gut issues. You know you have a gut problem symptoms when you experience chronic acidity, too much or too little stomach acid, H.Pylori, ulcers, recurring bloating, constipation, and so on. Address it before it becomes a complex disease in the human body. Address the root cause.
One of the biggest changes to care for your cut is to stop refined white sugar. The bad bacteria in your gut thrive on simple or refined carbohydrates and sugar. The more you consume these, the more you are feeding the bad bacteria and helping them grow at a rapid pace. Once the bad bacteria outnumber the good ones, they start poking holes in your intestinal wall and allow certain toxic particles to enter your blood that should never be there. Your TPO and ATGs go up. It makes you vulnerable to leaky gut and autoimmune conditions like lupus, vitiligo, multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, eczema, psoriasis, and so on. Cut down or stop white sugar.
For those wondering if they should give up fruits – No, I am not talking about fruit sugar. Unless you are one of those people who has five different pieces of fruit or five whole fruits at a time. Eating fruit platters and overdoing fructose can create gut problems too. It can make you susceptible to fructose malabsorption found in people who have too many fruits. Strike a balance. Just because something is good doesn’t mean you should have more of it for better health. Less is more. Quality and quantity are crucial. Be careful of white sugar.
The truth behind artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners became a trillion-dollar industry. These were sold claiming that they are low in calories, can help you lose weight, and are excellent for diabetics. But today, science shows that it may be low in calories, but it can cause impaired insulin resistance and is bad for your blood sugar levels. Artificial sweeteners are disastrous for your gut health.
You can opt for a little bit of stevia. You may want to balance your sugars or work on reversing your Type 2 diabetes with effort, discipline, and the right lifestyle changes. Yes, it is possible. Know more about our You Care Wellness Prediabetes and Diabetes Care Program here.
What should your diet contain?
A variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, lentils, and lean protein. Everything that we have been eating for years. Simply put, follow a balanced diet. Yet, we choose extremes.
Please do not adopt extreme fads to lose weight.
In our consults, we meet thousands of clients who have lost weight by hopping onto extreme programs and now struggle with severe gut issues like acid reflux and bloating because they lost weight the wrong way. They are unhappy. Imagine losing weight to have a new set of gut problems! Some cannot sleep at night because of severe acid reflux or bloating.
Another fad that we see is people intermittent fasting on black coffee. Science will show how they are destroying their bodies, especially their lower esophageal sphincter. Look at thousands of others having balanced diets and lifestyles with great bodies and weight and maintaining it. And they are psychologically happy,
Why do you choose extremes? Why do you need an extreme diet when there is enough proof that balance works? The more extreme diets you hop onto, the more you deprive your gut of key elements. You won’t find it in a nutraceutical, pill, or supplement. These may be great for some; I am not against them. They may be necessary in a few cases, but these can never replace real food.
Whole grains – do they make you feel bloated or gassy?
Who says whole grains are bad? These are loaded with vitamins and minerals. Yet, some people say, “Cavemen never ate it, and agriculture started 10,000 years later.” What about millions of people who eat whole grains and have zero health, weight, or gut issues? Ask yourself those questions before you jump to extremes.
Your gut requires nutrition from whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean protein, nuts, seeds, legumes, and lentils.
Many people walk up to me saying. “Luke, I cannot have rajma (kidney beans) or chana (split chickpea lentils). They are bad for my gut issues.” Don’t blame the food. Your gut is too weak to handle it. If you can’t break it down, it means you have inflammation in your gut, and your body is trying to tell you to fix your gut health problems and gut issues. Yes, of course, some people have genuine allergies to lectins found in lentils and legumes, but that is a small population. For everyone else, it is a warning sign that you need to bring the inflammation in your gut down.
The power of resistant starch
Resistant starch is fabulous for your gut issues because it helps you repopulate good gut bacteria and repairs the intestinal walls of the large colon, which is extremely important for your overall gut health. Know more about resistant starch here.
You find it in raw or green bananas, raw banana flour, boiled and cooled potatoes, cooked and cooled rice, and so on. Before you say potatoes or rice make you fat, please think again. These are staples in various countries around the globe. These foods are not your enemy, but your poor lifestyle, overeating, gluttony, sedentary lifestyle, sleep deprivation, and chronic stress are.
Rice kanji – A taste of ancient Indian wisdom
I have spoken this about us millions of times. It is a staple in India. All you need to do is take leftover cooked and cooled rice. Add 2-3 tablespoons and soak it in some water in a mud pot. Cover and keep it overnight. It will ferment by the following morning. Have 1-2 tablespoons of this. You can also opt to strain the water out. Add a tempering of curry leaves, mustard seeds, and chili. It is brilliant for your gut and gut issues.
We have hundreds of testimonials from around the world that have poured in from people after they started having rice kanji. Their acidity and bloating got better when they did this coupled with lifestyle changes.
Other gut-friendly foods
Have quality and unsalted nuts. Do not eat salty and fried ones. Some of the best options for your gut would be almonds and pistachios.
Yogurt is an excellent natural probiotic to populate your gut. Ethically source it.
What if you are lactose intolerant? Then you can look at sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles (made with ethical and quality ingredients), kombucha, kefir, and so on. You can make it at home or buy it from a good source.
Mushrooms are a rich source of beta-glucan and excellent for your gut. Here are the top 10 reasons to add them and some interesting recipes.
Oats, but not the instant variety. Without sounding disrespectful, instant oats are a joke. These have zero benefits because they are stripped of nutrition. It is why they can cook quickly. You will find yourself hungry within hours of eating them. Adding goji berries, pumpkin, and flax seeds may add a little nutrition, but instant oats are useless. Get oat groats which take about 10 minutes to cook. You can even soak these overnight. These are rich sources of beta-glucan that promote your gut health. They have the kind of fiber your gut needs and keep you full for a longer time. Learn the benefits of overnight oats here.
Barley grains. You can make a pulao out of it. You can boil barley and add it to your salads fantastic for your gut health.
Lean protein. If you have poor gut health or gut issues, even if you’re a hardcore non-vegetarian, I recommend you cut down on red meat consumption. Wait until the inflammation in your gut reduces to reintroduce it. Until then, move on to leaner proteins like chicken and fish.
Plant-based diet. If you have severe gut health problems, I recommend you go on a plant-based diet for at least three weeks to a month until the inflammation comes down. Repair your gut and then slowly start reintroducing animal protein.
Dark chocolate (70% and above) pure cocoa and raw cacao is great for your gut. You can enjoy it as a hot chocolate or have a piece or two of good quality dark chocolate.
Good quality green tea and matcha tea. Source them from a good and trustworthy source.
Allium vegetables include garlic, onion, leeks, chives, scallion, and so on.
Add cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, Swiss chard, radish, and so on.
Triphala is native to India. You get it in the form of pills or powder. I like to use powder. Mix half a teaspoon with water at night or have it in the morning. Everyone only looks at Triphala as a laxative. It is much more than that. It is fabulous for your gut while also allowing you to pass motions. Find 10 benefits of this ancient herb here.
Breastfeeding. Moms who are currently pregnant or about to deliver or planning to have kids – if you want better gut health for you and your child, plan to breastfeed for a minimum of six months and a maximum of how long you want to do it.
Start with the basics to repair and keep your gut clean.
What are the easiest ways to mess up your gut health and create gut issues?
- Overdosing on antibiotics
- Taking antibiotics without your probiotics or B complex
- Sleep deprivation
- Chronic emotional stress. (When you are stressed, you may experience unexplained cravings. Your bad bacteria demand to be fed by simple carbohydrates and refined sugar. You may notice that when you are stress eating, you crave sugar, candy, chocolates, and processed foods and not an apple.)
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Junk and processed foods. Learn to read labels and teach your kids to do the same. Watch my masterclass on nutritional labels here.
By now, you may already have realized the number of changes you can automatically make. Just give your body what it needs to maintain the intelligence of the gut, and you will experience how your body looks after you.
Now that you have learned about what you can do to nourish your gut and avoid recurring gut problem symptoms, don’t stop at this. Move to action.
Struggling with gut issues? Experiencing gut problem symptoms? Need expert guidance to rebuild your gut?
We help you find a way.
Set up a one-on-one consult with our integrative team of experts here or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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