I talk a lot about digestion because healthy digestion is paramount for optimal nutrient assimilation and immune function, unlimited energy, and healthy serotonin production.
Hippocrates said it best: “All disease begins in the gut.”
80% of your immune system is located in your digestive system.
95% of your serotonin is manufactured in your digestive system.
The gateway to your health is your digestion. Your digestive tract starts in the mouth and ends at the anus. Many people suffer from digestive upset somewhere along the tract, whether it is acid reflux, indigestion, constipation, diarrhea, or stomach cramps.
Leading causes of dysbiosis (bacterial imbalance) in the gut include:
- A diet high in sugar
- A diet high in processed foods
- A diet low in minerals and healthy fats such as EFAs
- Toxicity in the foods you eat
- Years of taking antibiotics or birth control
- Eating foods that inflame the body
I often get asked about taking a probiotic.
There are between 500 and 1000 different microbials that live in the gut, some of which are healthy, while others are harmful. Taking care of your digestive system by increasing the amount of friendly gut bacteria supports a healthy immune system, metabolism, and brain function.
Sometimes digestive imbalances lead to leaky gut, a syndrome that occurs when your intestinal lining has been damaged, leading to inflammation throughout the body and possibly developing additional food sensitivities.
So what can be done? I recommend taking a whole food probiotic such as Purium Probitoc or another high-quality brand. You will find many probiotics on the store shelves, but they are not all created equal. What you’re looking for when choosing a probiotic is one that is not killed by your stomach acid. The flora MUST remain viable until they reach the large intestine.
In addition to a good supplement, I encourage you to consume all-natural probiotics in a whole food state. You can find live bacteria in the following foods:
- Coconut milk kefir – homemade Kefir has 65+ strains of good bacteria.
- Cultured vegetables such as kimchi or sauerkraut.
- Coconut water kefir, such as Inner-Eco brand, available in the refrigerated section in Whole Foods or other health food stores. You can also make this fabulous drink at home.
- Water kefir has about 30 different beneficial microbial strains.
Commercial store-bought kefir has about 10 different beneficial microbial strains, more than most bottled, store-bought probiotics.