Beauty from within
Date Posted:2 March 2022
The old saying, “you are what you eat” is only partially true. A more accurate statement would be, “you are what you absorb”. Even the cleanest diet can be undone with poor gut health.
What are the signs of poor gut heath, digestion and absorption?
A healthy digestive system should produce a bowel movement twice, sometimes three times daily (after every meal, as the sensation of a full stomach triggers the peristaltic movements that cause a bowel motion). Most people tend to sit around the one per day, or even less, which means they are suffering from some degree of constipation. When waste isn’t cleared in a timely manor, it sits in the colon longer than it should, and toxins can be reabsorbed and circulated throughout the body.
Your bowel movement ideally should have a smooth surface, like a sausage, and be easy to pass with no straining. A stool that has cracks on the surface or resembles rabbit droppings is a sign of constipation. Likewise, a watery, loose stool indicates a faster transit time, which does not allow enough time for nutrient absorption through the small intestine. Other signs that you need to take some extra steps to promote good gut heath include excessive or smelly wind, burping or reflux after eating, and alternating colours and constituency in your stool. A balanced diet along with gut health supplements is the best way to maintain a healthy gut and digestive tract.
What are the effects of a compromised digestive system?
If left untreated, poor digestion and gut health and can lead to nutrient deficiencies, which in itself can lead to array of different conditions. In particular, poor gut health is strongly associated with auto-immune diseases, mental health conditions, increased weight and obesity (yes, unbalanced micro-flora can actually affect fat gain), food intolerances and skin conditions (acne, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea), just to name a few.
How to optimise your digestive health
- Water! Drink at least 1-2 litres each day, and make sure you drink 2 big glasses when you wake up in the morning. Additionally, hot lemon water in the morning if wonderful for both your digestion and cleaning out your liver.
- Fibre – You need to be eating vegetables / fruit with every single meal. E.g. Berries with breakfast, salad with lunch, veggies with dinner. On top of this, you need the husk from whole grains (e.g. brown rice) to bulk and soften the stool. If you are eating low carb, make sure you take a daily fibre supplement along with plenty of water.
- Digestive enzymes – these break down your food into small enough particles to be absorbed. Things that increase your digestive secretions are apple cider vinegar, lemon water, bitter foods and bitter herbs. For a very compromised digestive system, or for older people, a digestive enzyme supplement can be very beneficial.
- Microflora – this refers to the balance of good bacteria in your gut. Gut health supplements can help to correct this balance, but daily use of fermented herbs and foods will help long term with creating a healthy microbiome. These include sauerkraut, kim chi, kombucha, tempeh, kefir, natural yoghurt. If you are pressed for time, you can always add vegan probiotics to your daily routine. Whatever you do, make sure that you are buying organic (or as natural as possible) probiotics without GMO, colours, flavours, fillers and preservatives. You can explore our range of vegan probiotics and for more information on probiotics see our earlier post What are probiotics?
- And lastly (or perhaps firstly is more correct), you need to chew and eat slowly. Digestion begins in the mouth with the first digestive enzymes secreted by saliva. Take time to chew your food so it is soft and slushy before swallowing and try not to eat on the fly or when you are feeling stressed, as this state of being diminishes digestive function.
Choosing a probiotic for you
Our organic, vegan and natural gut health supplements range will help you find the best probiotic in Australia. Whether you’re looking for an organic probiotic powder or activated probiotics, our range has something for you. If you want activated probiotics for women then we can recommend the NuFerm certified organic activated probiotics. You can drink this neat or add it to your favourite recipes. If you prefer a tablet or capsule, then the Love Your Gut Capsules are for you. Supercharged Food’s Love Your Gut Capsules are full of anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral nutrients that completely heal and aid your gut. These capsules are the best probiotic in Australia. If you want a probiotic powder for cooking then opt for the Supercharged Food Golden Gut Blend instead. This probiotic powder can be used in fudge or even raw bliss balls to supercharge your snacks with gut-loving nutrients. The last option for those wanting a probiotic that’s all-natural is apple cider vinegar gummies. Apple cider vinegar has long been used for its gut-healing properties and abilities. The Frank Simple Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies are so delicious and flavoured with berries.