You can exercise to keep your heart healthy, eat a balanced diet to aid in your overall well being, and do preventative maintenance on your body to ensure that you are in good health as you get older, but how are you taking care of your digestive health? It turns out there is a vital piece of information that some people might be ignoring in their daily life—the existence and need for maintaining the good bacteria that resides in the digestive tract, the gut flora.
I Thought Bacteria Was A Bad Thing
Bacteria in your body might get a bad rap and make you think of things that make you sick, but the community of approximately 100 trillion bacteria that reside in your gut is crucial to keeping you in good health through proper digestion and a strong immune system.
In addition to the proper digestion of food, the bacteria in your gut have been tied to achieving a good metabolism and staying at a healthy weight. Maintaining a proper weight has innumerable good health effects, including lowering your risk of heart attack and stroke. Other benefits of proper gut flora include a boost in your immune system and your overall health, including your mental health. Some studies have even shown that there might be a connection between the proper balance of gut bacteria and a reduction in depression and anxiety.
How Can I Ensure The Proper Balance Of Bacteria?
One of the keys to keeping up the proper balance of bacteria in your digestive tract is to ensure you eat a proper diet. Diets with a variety of foods are the best, including whole foods, fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans, legumes, and limited meat intake. Focusing on this sort of diet also lends itself to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. Fermented foods like plain yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, kefir, kombucha, or tempeh are a good addition to your diet as well. Lastly, there are probiotics that come in the form of a powder or pill that can be added to your daily routine. If you’ve been struggling with your GI health or need some assistance in making changes in your life, contact GI Associates today to schedule an appointment and let us help you figure out the right path for your digestive health.