Quick and easy tips to improve your gut health

Do you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome? Do you experience bloating or indigestion on a daily basis?

Most of us have a problem with bowel movements. This can include bloating, indigestion, reflux, constipation and other uncomfortable problems. It’s never fun.

That’s why I share some tips to help with the health of the digestive system. Keep in mind that gut health is a complex issue. These are just general tips that could help you. If you have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome or other digestive problems, talk to your doctor and dietitian for extra support. Personalized help is very important in managing symptoms.

Quick tips to improve your gut health.

Keep a food diary

Keeping a diary can be helpful in identifying individual foods. If you find a particular food that is causing your symptoms, you can try avoiding it for a few weeks to see if it makes a difference.

However, beware of Elimination Diets, which can be promoted online. Not all of them are useful or based on scientific evidence and may increase the risk of nutrient deficiencies. In addition, eliminating or reducing plant foods from your diet can affect your microbiome.

I highly recommend talking to a dietitian before removing certain foods from your diet. This is especially true if you eliminate whole food groups or are interested in a restrictive diet.

Consider taking a daily probiotic supplement

Probiotics are living microorganisms that when taken in sufficient quantity, can offer health benefits. Not all fermented foods contain probiotics. Instead, try to choose a supplement that contains at least 100 million cfu a day.

If you start a new probiotic supplement, keep in mind that it may make your symptoms worse at first. This should be temporary as your body adjusts to probiotics. If your symptoms are the same or have worsened after 4 weeks of use, try a different strain. Everyone will react differently to different probiotic strains and you need to find one that works for your symptoms or condition.

Limit alcohol

Alcohol irritates the stomach and gastrointestinal tract, which can worsen the symptoms in some people. If you notice that alcohol worsens your symptoms, either on the same day or in the following days, consider reducing or avoiding it, depending on your preferences and lifestyle.

Limit caffeine based on your symptoms

Caffeine is also a digestive stimulant and can make your symptoms worse. If you tolerate caffeinated beverages, there is no reason to limit them. However, if you notice that it worsens your symptoms, consider limiting it or choosing decaffeinated options. You can also experiment with limiting caffeine for a few weeks to see if it makes a difference. Everyone has a different caffeine tolerance.

Make a routine

Routine can make a big difference. Try to eat similar hours every day and avoid large meals. In addition, try to eat slowly and chew your food well.

This also includes developing a toilet routine. Hot drinks and drinking a large glass of water could help.

Consume sufficient amounts of fiber

The general recommendation is to aim for 25 grams of fiber each day for women and 38 grams for men. Eating too much or too little fiber can make your symptoms worse. However, some people may benefit more from this general fiber composition. Try to choose good sources of soluble fiber every day, such as oats and ground flax seeds.

Drink plenty of water

Drinking enough water is important for many reasons, but it can also help improve digestion and prevent constipation. It is also especially important to drink plenty of water if you are on a high fiber diet or if you are increasing your fiber intake.

Move

Exercise can help prevent constipation. It can also help manage stress. You do not need to do a lot of high-intensity training every day to get the benefits of exercise. Walking is an excellent low-intensity exercise. Stretching is also a great way to move your body. Try to find something that you like and that fits your lifestyle.

Limit stress

Easier said than done, right? Stress management may seem different to everyone, but do what works for you. You could try spending some time with yourself each day doing something fun and relaxing. You can also try meditation or gentle exercises such as walking or yoga.

Eat a variety of plant foods

Finally, plants are a good source of prebiotics, which feed the good bacteria in the gut. Eating a variety of plant foods can benefit our digestive health in many ways. The general recommendation is to aim for 30 different plant foods each week.

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