Our everyday gut function helps us in more then one way. For so long we only ever thought of our gut for digestion. But now we are finding out it is so much more.

 

How our gut impacts our mood and immunity

Our gut microbiome has a primary role in supporting our digestion function, helping in the breakdown of food and releasing nutrients but also does much more, such as helping our mood, immunity, and sleep. Our gut plays an essential role in keeping us well, with up to 80 percent of our immune cells located within our gut. A healthy gut plays a vital role in supporting an optimal immune response in the body.

With up to 90 percent of our serotonin (our feel-good happy neurotransmitter) made in our gut, our friendly gut bacteria do much more then just work on digestion. A new term for the gut is the second brain, due to emerging research we now know that our gut bacteria interacts with brain neurotransmitter production which is responsible for our mood. There is a clear two-way conversation between our gut and brain, called the gut-brain axis.

Also, our stress levels or lack of sleep have the ability to influence our gut bacteria, having an effect on our overall health by impacting mood and our immune response.

 

The vital ingredients to help support healthy gut function and our everyday immune response.

 

  • Pre and probiotics – These beneficial bacteria help to maintain our ratio of friendly gut bacteria, supporting our gut flora. Pre and probiotics work best in synergy together in the body. The prebiotic helps encourage the growth of friendly gut bacteria, and the probiotic boosts beneficial gut bacteria when you might need it most of all. The prebiotic helps the overall effect of probiotics, producing a greater effect.
  • Aloe Vera – Is one of the super digestive tonics, well known for its beneficial action on gut health. Aloe Vera helps to soothe and settle gut function by acting as a protective barrier and calming irritation. Aloe Vera also acts as a prebiotic and has immune properties helping our immune system.
  • Turmeric – This golden spice is used for complete body comfort. Helping as a powerful antioxidant for joints, cardiovascular, brain and gastrointestinal health. Turmeric supports gut function by helping a healthy gut lining. Turmeric also has a vital action on gut bacteria and neurotransmitter function.
  • Slippery Elm – Has a gut protecting role as it calms and also provides a barrier for the gut. This key ingredient for gut health also helps to assist against cell damage alongside gently supporting bowel regularity.
  • Licorice – a favorite herb for its soothing action, licorice not only supports a healthy gut microbiome but helps settle an upset stomach with its properties for gut health.

The 5 top ways to help everyday gut health

  1. Getting enough sleep, our hours of sleep helps to determine our gut health as lack of sleep is believed to contribute to poor levels of beneficial gut bacteria. Aiming for 7-9 hours’ sleep a night may help our mood, immunity and beneficial gut bacteria thrive.
  2. Diet, what we eat can help our gut bacteria including more fibre, such as root vegetables, kumara, carrots, leafy greens and gluten free grains like buckwheat or quinoa, nuts, lentils, fruit and grains these all naturally act as super prebiotics. Also fermented foods such as kimchi and sauerkraut can help as a prebiotic boost. Including plant foods into your diet helps support healthy balanced gut flora.
  3. Exercise is a natural way to help lift levels of our friendly gut bacteria, getting in some form of movement into a day has shown to support a healthier diversity of bacteria.
  4. Including down-time, relaxation not only helps our mood and stress levels it helps gut bacteria production, feeling good and our mood has a two-way action helping our brain and gut health all-in-one.
  5. Getting enough antioxidants into our day, polyphenols are active compounds found in antioxidants that help as fuel for healthy gut microbes, think berries, like blackcurrants, acai, raspberries or brightly colored spices, turmeric, ginger and cinnamon.

Achieving a healthy gut includes supporting our well-being, helping mood, sleep and immune function for better everyday health.