Is it just you, or is it what you’ve been eating? With so much diversity in our diets today, it can be hard to pinpoint what foods are good for our gut’s microbiome. If you’re knowledgeable on your digestive health, you’ll know that having a good balance in this ecosystem of bacteria that lives in your GI tract is absolutely crucial to supporting your health. Take charge and give your gastrointestinal system the attention it needs by cutting out some of these foods.
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Good digestive health is essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Diet is an important factor in the functioning of the digestive system. However, some foods that we consider healthy may be harming our digestive system without knowing it. In this article, we will discuss foods that could be harming your digestive health and provide recommendations for improving your diet.
Chances are, you’ve heard all about how gluten can cause a plethora of issues with your health. Known for being prevalent in foods such as bread, pasta and even soy sauce, it’s known for giving bread its signature spongy texture. While it’s true that some individuals are more sensitive to gluten than others, if you don’t even have a gluten allergy, eating foods containing it can have significant, long-term effects on your gut bacteria.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise when sugar is slated as being harmful to your digestive health – but why is it so bad for your gut’s microbiome? It disturbs the balance of good and bad bacteria. Most of the bacteria in your gut help support your body, but some of the bacteria may have a negative impact on your health. Sugar disturbs the balance of good and bad bacteria in your GI tract, and it can have other adverse effects as well.
Fried and Processed Foods
Fried and processed foods are harmful to your gut for the same reason as bacteria – they feed the harmful bacteria in your gut, not to mention carry other side effects. This is a serious issue, because the more diverse your gut microbiome is, the better your health is likely to be. Think twice before consuming this kind of food – in the long run, it’s best to think of your future health.
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Many people are lactose intolerant, but research has shown that a diet rich in dairy products has significant effects on your gut microbiome, and it only takes a few days of increased dairy intake for those changes to take place. Another issue with dairy is the possibility of consuming antibiotics. While antibiotics save lives, over usage may be harmful. These substances get rid of all bacteria alike, which throws your microbiome out of balance.
Eating a meat-heavy diet can be harmful on your body, especially if it includes a lot of red meat. Eating a lot of red meat affects your gut bacteria quickly, increasing bad bacteria and decreasing the good. Unless you’re buying the most organic and premium meat you can find, chances are there will be a good amount of antibiotics involved.
GMO products haven’t been around for long, but there are significant issues with these types of foods. Gyphosate, an herbicide used in growing some of these foods, has a negative effect on the gut microbiome. When humans digest GMOs, the artificial genes transfer into the bacteria of the gut and change their function.The potential negative effects on your microbiome and overall health should tell you all you need to know about consuming GMO products.
Improving Your Digestive Health: Tips and Recommendations
Maintaining good digestive health is important for overall well-being. Here are some tips and recommendations to improve your digestive health:
- Eat a balanced diet: A balanced diet is essential for good digestive health. Make sure to include plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins in your diet.
- Stay hydrated: Drinking enough water is important for digestion. Aim to drink at least 8-10 glasses of water a day.
- Chew your food thoroughly: Chewing your food thoroughly helps to break down the food into smaller pieces, making it easier for your body to digest.
- Avoid processed and high-fat foods: Processed and high-fat foods can be difficult to digest, so try to limit your intake of these types of foods.
- Increase your fiber intake: Fiber helps to keep your digestive system running smoothly. Good sources of fiber include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.
- Exercise regularly: Regular exercise can help to improve digestion by reducing stress and keeping your digestive system moving.
- Manage stress: Stress can have a negative impact on digestion. Try to manage stress through techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine intake: Alcohol and caffeine can irritate the digestive system, so try to limit your intake of these substances.
- Take probiotics: Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that help to maintain a healthy balance of bacteria in your gut. You can take probiotics as a supplement or find them in fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut.
- See a doctor if you have persistent digestive issues: If you have persistent digestive issues such as bloating, gas, or diarrhea, it’s important to see a doctor to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
Taking Charge of Your Digestive Health
Nobody’s perfect – chances are you’re going to eat foods that aren’t the best for your gut, so don’t worry that if you can’t avoid all of these foods 24/7. Instead, do what you can to take the best possible care of your body, make healthy changes to your diet and take probiotics to help your gut microbiome. If you feel like you may have gastrointestinal issues, schedule a televisit with Triborough GI today.
Call (718) 332-0600 today to get started on better gastrointestinal health!