Did you know that around 70 percent of your immune system is found in your gut? Your gut can be linked to many different functions of the body that contribute significantly to how you feel each and every day. This means maintaining gut health is crucial to feeling your best. If you are looking to improve gut health and feel amazing, keep reading this guide to discover the secrets you need to know about shopping for gut health.
Restoring Your Gut Health
Your gut hosts close to 100 trillion bacteria with over 1,000 different species. Its quite the operation going on in your stomach that contributes to many different functions of the body, including:
- Mental function
- And maintenance
It is especially important to maintain gut health to ensure your body is running at its optimal state.
In order to effectively restore gut health, it is crucial to understand what a healthy gut consists of. There are two types of bacteria in your gut.
- Beneficial bacteria
- And bad bacteria
A healthy gut consists of an ideal balance between the two of them. If the harmful bacteria begin to replicate uncontrollably, that’s when issues like Crohn’s disease and leaky gut syndrome appear.
There is a way of replenishing good bacteria by consuming healthy bacteria called probiotics.
Probiotics to Restore Gut Health
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that reside in your stomach.
These beneficial bacteria contribute to the overall balance of bacteria by fending off harmful bacteria and keeping them under control. This balance keeps your body in homeostasis and helps to ward off illnesses.
Your gut bacteria can become imbalanced for several reasons, including:
- Poor diet
- Antibiotic use
- and if you smoke
An imbalance of bacteria can lead to a multitude of issues within the body. However, many of these issues can be avoided with the consumption of probiotics.
Foods Good For Gut Health
Probiotics can be found in many common foods that you would normally buy at the grocery store. Some of the foods you buy may contain them, and you wouldn’t even realize.
Here is a list of some of the most popular gut health foods that contain probiotics.
Yogurt is widely considered one of the best probiotic foods you can consume. It is made from milk that is fermented to produce naturally occurring probiotics.
Different yogurt brands have various amounts of probiotics containing all different strains. This makes it necessary to actively look and see how many probiotics and strains different types of yogurts have before purchasing.
Things to look for on yogurt labels:
- Active cultures
- Live probiotics
- L. Acidophilus
- And prebiotics
Try to look for yogurt with low or no sugar because sugar can lead to harmful bacteria growth.
Saurkraut is another excellent source of probiotics. It is also a fermented food — the chemical process that creates probiotics, among other beneficial compounds.
Saurkraut can be used in different cultural dishes in a variety of ways, often served on the side. One important thing to keep in mind is to make sure it is not pasteurized as this can kill the probiotics.
Kombucha is a favorite among health enthusiasts. The fermented tea produces probiotics, vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients.
Kombucha is enjoyed in all different corners of the world, varying slightly in ingredients.
Some of the more popular brands of kombucha include:
- And Suja
Make sure when you are purchasing kombucha, it doesn’t have too many sugars, anything over 10 grams is a bit excessive. Try to see if you can find one with less than 5 grams of sugar for the best results.
Another popular probiotic milk drink, kefir, is made by adding cultures of probiotic and yeast to milk.
Kefir comes from the Turkish word “keyif,” meaning “good feeling.”
Kefir is similar to yogurt in a way but typically contains higher amounts of probiotics and more diverse strains, making it a better source.
The probiotic drink has been gaining momentum in western medicine due to its incredible health benefits. It comes in a variety of flavors, including:
- And Pineapple
You can find kefir at most grocery stores and health food stores. Kefir is also usually lactose-free, making it a suitable drink for those who have a hard time digesting dairy products.
Another fan favorite, the fermented sandwich topper, is an excellent source of probiotics.
Just make sure you are looking for naturally fermented pickles. Otherwise, you might not be getting enough probiotics.
Just like yogurt, raw cheese also contains a variety of different probiotic strains.
Common types of cheese that contain probiotics are:
- And Edam
When you are purchasing cheese, make sure to look for “raw” and “unpasteurized,” otherwise the probiotics will most likely be killed off in the process.
You can enjoy many of the benefits probiotics bring without having to search for various types of foods.
Probiotic supplements are gaining significant attention in the past few years, thanks to ongoing research showing the potential benefits of consuming them.
It’s important to understand the different probiotic supplements out there and the various benefits they can bring.
Typical doses range anywhere from 1 billion to 20 billion colony forming units (CFU). There have been several studies showing higher doses are not always more effective, and also higher doses don’t seem to cause any adverse side effects.
Another thing to keep in mind when it comes to probiotic supplements is the number of strains they contain. It has been reported that different strains bring about various benefits. The more popular strains that are specifically used for gut health and conditions like Crohn’s disease include:
- L. Acidophilus
- Bacillus coagulans
- L. rhamnosus GG
- Saccharomyces boulardii
- And B. Bifidum
These probiotic strains are the most commonly used and researched for their benefits.
Looking to Improve Gut Health?
Gut health is vital and should be taking care of at all costs. Introducing probiotics into your diet can prove to be beneficial for you and your overall wellness.
If you are looking to improve gut health, check out our blog for more helpful information.