While you guts may not be the most glamorous of topics, a healthy gut is vital for your overall health and wellbeing - a healthy outside starts with the inside (of your gut!)
The food we eat supplies us with the energy and nutrients necessary for many of our different bodily functions. If you have an unhealthy gut your body may be unable to absorb and benefit from the nutrients in your food.
Good health starts with a healthy gut microbiome (the trillions of good bacteria that live in our gut), containing hundreds of different species of bacteria and accounting for about 1-2kg of our total body weight (that is A LOT of bugs!).
Poor immune function, weight issues, skin conditions, digestive issues and poor sleep are all signs of a gut microbiome imbalance.
Poor Immune System
A poor immune system often begins with poor gut health. A large majority of our immune system relies on the gut, it is an incredibly important barrier, as the inside of your gut is exposed to the outside environment.
The microbiome strengthens the physical defence of the gut wall, activates immune functions in the gut cells and affects the pH of the gut environment making it hostile to invading bacteria. A healthy microbiome will compete for space and nutrients, therefore there is limited gut surface or food for harmful bacteria.
An imbalance in gut microbiome affects our digestive system and use of energy. Inefficient energy use can result in decreased energy levels.
Decreased energy levels and increased fatigue triggers production of the stress hormone, cortisol. Increased cortisol levels promotes fat-storage, higher blood sugar levels and higher insulin levels (insulin also also promotes fat-storage). Therefore if you're struggling to loose weight - it may be due to a sad gut microbiome!
If you've been struggling with skin issues such as; acne, rosacea and dermatitis, with no avail from expensive skin care products, the answer may just lie within your gut!
A poor gut microbiome can alter the integrity of the intestinal wall resulting in a "leaky gut" and consequently increased inflammation. The symptoms of inflammation can manifest differently in individuals, however for many it has a direct affect on the skin, resulting in inflammatory conditions such as; acne, rosacea and dermatitis.
Digestive issues will affect almost everybody, at some stage of their lives. If you regularly feel uncomfortable after eating and suffer from bloating, flatulence, cramps or diarrhoea this is a sign that your gut microbiome is out of balance and not working correctly.
With a healthy gut microbiome, digestion and excretion should be smooth and easy, with no urgency or force required.
Your gut microbiome can have a massive influence on your quality of sleep. Your sleep cycles are regulated by a hormone called melatonin which is produced in response to changing light through out the day. Our microbiome can increase our melatonin levels by increasing levels of tryptophan, an amino acid vital to melatonin production.
Tryptophan also converts to serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for maintaining mood balance (also known as the "happy hormone"). Low levels of tryptophan can cause imbalance to sleep-wake cycles.
A healthy gut microbiome producing healthy levels of tryptophan can lead improved quality of sleep.
If you would like to give your gut an immune boosting makeover just in time for winter – give our centre a call to find out more.
Note: Any changes to your diet should be made in consultation with your General Practitioner and/or a Nutritional Consultant. Contact our friendly team today for more information about our services and let us help you take back control of your health.