The incredible complexity of the gut and its important to overall health is a hot topic of research in medical field these days. Various studies have demonstrated the link between gut health and your immune system.
Not just immune system but also a person’s mood, mental health, skin conditions, endocrine disorders and cancer are directly or indirectly connected with your gut health.
A person has about 300 to 500 different species of bacteria in their digestive tract. While some microorganisms are harmful to our health, many are incredibly beneficial and even necessary to a healthy body. There are a number of ways an unhealthy gut might manifest itself. Here are six of the most common signs:
6 Signs of an unhealthy gut
Stomach problems like gas, bloating, heartburn, diarrhea and constipation are all signs of an unhealthy gut. This is because an unhealthy gut will have difficulty in processing the food and eliminating the waste.
Unintentional weight gaining or losing
Gaining or losing weight without making any changes to your diet or unintentional weight changes, could also be a signal of an unhealthy gut. Reason behind – an unhealthy gut affects your body’s ability to absorb enough nutrients from the food, regulate blood sugar and store fat.
Weight loss occurs small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), while weight gain is caused by insulin resistance or an urge to eat more food due to decreased nutrient absorption.
Sleep disturbances or fatigue
Majority of the body’s serotonin, a hormone that affects mood and sleep, is produced in the gut. So gut damage can impair your ability to sleep well causing sleep disturbances such as insomnia or poor sleep.
Skin conditions like eczema may be related to a damaged gut. Inflammation in the gut can cause increased leaking of proteins out into body, which in turn can cause skin irritation.
Craving for high sugary diet
A diet high in processed foods and added sugars can decrease the amount of good bacteria in your gut. This imbalance can cause increased sugar cravings, which can damage your gut still further. And this can be a precursor to a number of diseases and even cancers.
An unhealthy gut can alter proper functioning of the immune system. This can lead to autoimmune diseases, a disease in which the body’s immune system attacks healthy cells rather than harmful invaders.
Ways to Improve Gut Health
Lower your stress levels
Just as stress are harmful to whole body, it is equally harmful to your gut. Stress reducing activities include walking, meditation, a gentle massage, being social with friends and families, laughing, yoga or having a pet.
Get enough sleep
Try to prioritize getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Not having enough sleep can cause serious issues to your gut.
Eating your meals slowly and chewing them properly can promote full digestion and easy absorption of nutrients. It actually helps you reduce digestive comfort and maintain a healthy gut.
Drinking plenty of water has been always considered promoting your digestive health. It also creates a good balance of good bacteria in gut. So staying hydrated is the simplest way to get a healthy gut.
Change your diet
Reduce the amount of processed food or foods with high sugar level or high fat. A diet high in fiber or eating plenty of plant-based foods and lean protein can improve your gut health.
Human gut is more complex than ever thought of and has a huge impact on overall health. Changing your lifestyle can positively affect your gut health. So eat, sleep and be healthy.