Uncovering the Secrets of Digestion and Hydration for Longevity
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While many diet plans and trends have come and gone over the years, there are some, such as vegan and ketogenic diets, that continue to be followed by people for their proven health benefits.
Besides the given sample diets, biohacking is a relatively new term that has garnered attention in the realm of health and wellness. While it covers a wide range of health and lifestyle practices, dietary modification is one of its most popular topics.
Basically, one of the focal points when it comes to biohacking your diet is improving your gut health. Your guts play a pivotal role in your overall health. In fact, you can even consider it as the second brain of your body.
According to Vinshi Khan, a gastroenterologist with Franciscan Physician Network Gastroenterology in Lafayette, Indiana, having good gut health leads to many benefits, such as reduced inflammation, less risk for obesity and heart disease, as well as higher energy levels. Of course, don’t forget about its usefulness in digesting the food you eat, absorbing its nutrients, and using it as fuel to maintain your body. However, if you have poor gut health, you can experience frequent discomfort, constipation, diarrhoea, heartburn, and more.
5 Biohacking Tips to Improve Gut Health
Add Probiotics to Your Diet
When it comes to gut health, one of its most vital components is the good bacteria that call your body home. However, there are also colonies of bad bacteria that could be potentially harmful. Having an imbalance in your guts can lead to allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, and even cancer.
Therefore, balancing your body by having more good bacteria than bad is essential to achieving and maintaining good gut health. An article released by Harvard Health Publishing suggested that eating fermented foods like yoghourt, kimchi, and miso ensures your digestion remains solid and free from illnesses. Additionally, you can also add probiotic supplements to your diet. However, consider asking your physician before consumption.
You can also go for some prebiotics if you want a boost in your overall gut health. These compounds pertain to a group of specialised plant fibres that act as fertilisers to stimulate the growth of good bacteria in the gut. The following are some examples of prebiotic foods:
- Whole grain
Drink Lots of Water
Drinking plenty of water is crucial for good gut health. Adequate hydration helps to flush toxins from your body and improves the digestive process, allowing for better nutrient absorption. Natural mineral water and alkaline water can provide additional benefits, such as minerals that support bone and digestive health and properties that promote probiotic growth.
Eat Less Inflammatory Foods
Certain foods, such as red meat, dairy, fried foods, and sugars, can cause inflammation in the gut, leading to various health concerns. Dana Ellis Hunnes, an assistant professor at UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health says that sugary soft drinks, high fructose corn syrup, candies, and processed foods should also be avoided or limited as they can harm some of your good bacteria.
Aside from the benefits of regular exercise, you might be surprised to know that staying active can also improve overall gut health. As you let more oxygen reach your brain and bloodstream, there is a rise in body temperature. These conditions are good for your microbiome, allowing bacteria to flourish.
Moreover, Jeffrey Woods, a professor of kinesiology and community health at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, states that staying active leads to an increase in the bacteria population that produces short-chain fatty acids, or SCFAs. These fatty acids play an important role in the body acting as the primary fuel for your gut cells, regulating inflammation, modifying your metabolism, and more.
Stress can have adverse effects on your gut health. Kenneth Koch, MD, professor of medicine in gastroenterology and medical director of the Digestive Health Center at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, says that short-term stress can cause discomfort, such as gas production and constipation, while chronic stress can increase the risk of inflammatory bowel disease, peptic ulcers, and gastroesophageal reflux disease. Therefore, it is essential to manage stress through activities such as meditation, deep breathing, and mindfulness practices.
Biohacking your guts may sound strange, but these tips are backed up by scientific research. Incorporating them into your daily routine can optimise your gut health and improve your overall well-being.
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