If you are to have good Gut health – then you have to eat a diet that fits what your gut is evolved to eat. Another reason why diet is so important.
Here is an excellent manual for how to avoid what is bad and eat what is good. Snip here:
1. What is the “gut” anyway?
The gut is the intestinal tract.
2. Why is gut health so important?
(Quotes below are from the Weston A. Price review of the book, GAPS/Gut and Psychology Syndrome)
“Poor bacterial flora and digestion are at the heart of serious health problems. When children are born with intestinal bacterial imbalances or gut dysbiosis, they tend to have a compromised immune system and are prone to illness. Campbell- McBride brings to light the profound statements of Hippocrates that “All diseases begin in the gut.”
“Although genetics is often provided as an explanation for brain disorders like autism and ADD/ADHD, as well as for psychiatric illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, genetics cannot explain the exponential increase in these health and developmental problems, says Dr. Campbell-McBride,because genetic changes work much more slowly.
Through studying the health of hundreds of patients with autism, learning disabilities, psychiatric illness and other problems, Campbell- McBride discovered that in virtually all cases these children and adults suffer from digestive problems, often of a severe nature. Through her research, she has determined a distinct correlation between unhealthy intestinal flora, poor digestion and toxicity from chemicals created by undigested foods, which can severely affect brain chemistry. She coins this relationship the Gut and Psychology Syndrome, or GAPS.”
3. What wreaks havoc on gut health?
- Sugar, grains – especially empty carbs (white grains/pasta/rice, sugar – even the more natural sugars) “A child or adult who eats a diet high in difficult-to-digest carbohydrates such as grains and processed foods will continue to encourage the underlying condition of gut dysbiosis. Dr. Campbell-McBride states that people with damaged flora will crave the very foods that support the survival of the unhealthy bacteria, often to the exclusion and refusal of others.” (Have you seen the post about the proper preparation of grains for optimal nutrition?)
- Antibiotics: “anti” = against; “biotics” = bacteria – yes they clear out the bad bacteria causing an infection, which is sometimes needed, but they also take the good bacteria with it – only take if absolutely necessary.
- A diet that is off balance between omega 6’s and omega 3’s. Most of us are too high in the omega 6’s, which are found in unhealthy vegetable oils and processed foods. Some omega 6’s are needed, but they should be balanced with omega 3’s. “Recent research has revealed that too much omega-6 in the diet creates an imbalance that can interfere with production of important prostaglandins. This disruption can result in increased tendency to form blood clots, inflammation, high blood pressure, irritation of the digestive tract,depressed immune function, sterility, cell proliferation, cancer and weight gain.” From The Skinny on Fats.
- Trans fats: “Altered partially hydrogenated fats made from vegetable oils actually block utilization of essential fatty acids, causing many deleterious effects including sexual dysfunction, increased blood cholesterol and paralysis of the immune system.” From The Skinny on Fats.
- Stress. If you feel like you can’t eliminate it, then change how you react to it.
- Toxins all around us, including those in our food, such as pesticides, preservatives, hormones, fake colorings, etc. (Read your food labels! Even better, eat food without labels!)
- What else did I forget?
4. What supports gut health? More here at the link