How to improve gut health is a hot topic these days.  Actually, it is the first step in improving your total health picture.  Your gut health affects your immune system, your digestion and nutrient absorption and even the amount of brain fog you experience. This is a topic near and dear to my heart (well really, my gut) because I have had trouble with my GI tract since I was a child.  GI trouble comes in many forms.  Some of the more minor ones are IBS (or irritable bowel syndrome) with or without constipation, gas and bloating, diarrhea and constipation.  This may not sound like a big deal to you, but if you suffer with it, it is!  Then there are some of the more serious problems like colitis, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s Disease.  None of these conditions are fun to live with.  Some people become a prisoner in their own homes because they are afraid to leave the house.  We also have to remember that your gut plays a big role in your immune system health.

As a nurse over the last 40 years, I have seen these conditions become more and more prevalent.  People have become sicker and resort to high-powered medications and surgery.  Now they have to deal with the side effects of strong medications and complications from surgery.

As with most health challenges facing us (remembering that we are getting sicker and sicker as a population), I started to look for an underlying cause.  Why do we get worse and worse as a population when our health system is suppose to be getting better and better?  Here are some of my observations:  We have turned in to a society of convenience, fast foods, microwave foods, processed foods…foods that are quick and easy.  If you do actually cook and prepare fresh food, where is it from?  Has it been mass produced on farms that use a lot of chemicals and fertilizers?  Does the food come from another country where the food is picked early (before it’s ripe) and then transported long distances?  When this happens the food looses much of it’s nutritional value.  What about GMO food?  Is it real food?  The DNA of the seed, plant and fruit of the plant have been genetically altered.  It’s more resistant to pests.  Doesn’t that mean there are more pesticides on (or in) the fruit or vegetable?  There’s not a lot said about GMO food.  There is nowhere on a food label that say’s “this is Genetically Modified Food”.  When there is discussion about GMO food, there is always plenty of evidence presented on both sides of the issue.  Is it good?  Is it bad?

So, what’s a concerned consumer to do?  There are probably multiple solutions to the problem so I will share my solution with you.  We don’t buy fast food or processed food.  We have thrown out our microwave.  We buy organic and locally grown food when we can and cook at home most of the time.  We also supplement.   Even when food is not mass produced and shipped, our fruits and vegetables can be nutrient deficient just because our soils are nutrient depleted.

Lastly, I would like to mention the importance of assuring you have healthy, balanced GI flora.  This is the good bacteria that is needed in the GI tract and is probably one of the biggest reasons we have GI trouble.  Because of the many reasons listed above and the fact that every time you take an antibiotic, your normal gut flora (the good bacteria) can get out of balance, it is important to take steps to promote healthy bacteria in the GI tract.  My favorite product for  GI health happens to be a pre -biotic!   This product promotes healthy bacteria growth in the colon and has been life changing for me.  Over time my gut health has improved and all the bothersome symptoms I lived with every day have disappeared.  Your body is an amazing machine.  When you give it the proper building blocks, your body will mend, repair and eventually thrive!

When you improve your gut health your overall health will also improve.  Your immune system will start working better.  You will get sick less and you will have fewer allergy problems.  Over time you will feel a big difference!  Start today! Give yourself a chance to improve your gut health!