Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is usually a blanket term that is used for several different issues. Symptoms typically include bloating, flatulence, constipation diarrhoea, abdominal pain, etc. Certain medications, supplements or diets can be recommended, but if you do not address the root cause, these issues will persist. One effective way of finding the root cause is by consulting with Michelle to undertake a stool test. You can also talk to Michelle about an elimination diet, helping you find a diet that is right for you.
Here are some suggestions that may promote gut health:
1. Prebiotics/ Fibre
You may have heard of the gut microbiome? It is the rain forest of bacteria in your colon responsible for your overall health. Keeping this forest balanced with good bacteria is essential to maintain physical and mental health. What feeds your good bacteria? Prebiotics! Prebiotics are foods such as asparagus, leeks, artichokes, garlic, onion, chicory root etc. There are also prebiotic supplements available. These foods are a good source of fibre. Insoluble fibre bulks up your stool and acts like a brush, sweeping through your bowels to get everything out and keep things moving. The soluble variety absorbs water and forms a gel-like substance. This helps your stool pass smoothly through your bowels and improves its form and consistency. Fibre is crucial to keep you regular, eliminating toxins and excess hormones from your body.
What feeds the bad bacteria in your gut? Sugar! This may cause the bad bacteria to overrun the forest and take over, leaving you sick.
Please consult with Michelle if you experience adverse effects from eating more of these foods. Although fibre is essential for health, as it is undigested by the body, it may ferment in the gut and can cause bloating and gas.
Probiotics are live microorganisms that repopulate the gut microbiome. In simple terms, it is the replenishing of the good gut bacteria, essential for optimal health. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as, refrigerated kimchi, sauerkraut and pickles, in fermented tea, like kombucha, in yoghurt with live cultures and kefir. You can also take probiotic supplements, but if you are unsure which strain you are lacking they may be superfluous. A stool test can tell you which strains you need more of.
If you have symptoms such as, a white coating on your tongue, lack of concentration, thrush, fungal nail, sinus issues, joint pain, frequent urinary tract infections, etc. you may have an overgrowth of candida. Please consult with Michelle if this is the case as fermented foods can aggravate the issue.
3. Bone Broth
Bone broth contains amino acids like, glycine and glutamine, that help keep your gut working properly. Drink one cup of bought or home-made bone broth daily.
If you are a vegetarian/ vegan, consult with Michelle on supplements for gut health.
The importance of water is often overlooked in digestive health. Your body uses water to soften your stool and make it easier to pass. Water is essential to help keep the contents of your bowels moving and rid the body of toxins, excess hormones and bacteria. Ensure you are drinking 2 litres of filtered water a day and up to 3 litres in hot weather or when exercising.
Exercising increases blood flow towards the muscles and digestive tract, which can help move food through the gut. Exercise has also been shown to help alleviate heartburn, gas, stomach cramps and constipation. Walk for a minimum of 30-minutes a day to help with gut motility.
Meditation activates the parasympathetic or 'rest and digest' response. This can help with digestive issues by maintaining a healthy gut barrier, reducing inflammation, improving nutrient absorption and metabolism. Your body can launch an immune attack on certain things that you eat, causing inflammation. Chronic inflammation can aggravate the gut causing bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, etc. Start with 10-minutes of meditation before going to sleep at night.
These are some useful tips that may help your digestive health but everyone is different. If you have tried several remedies and/ or sought advice for your issues with still no relief, book a no-obligations, free call with Michelle to discuss your case in more detail.
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