You’ve probably heard about the gut microbiome and how it affects your overall health. But what is it, and how can you keep it healthy?
What is the gut microbiome? The gut microbiome is the name given to the many microorganisms that live in your digestive tract. These include bacteria, fungi, helminths, and viruses that help to break down food and ultimately turn them into nutrients for your body to use.
This process is more than just about breaking down food. The gut biome helps keep ‘bad’ bacteria in check. This means avoiding an overgrowth of ‘bad’ bacteria that can lead to physical and psychological health problems. More and more information is coming to light about the impact of gut health on various body systems, including weight, the immune system and even the brain. To dive deeper into this topic, check out these great fact sheets from our friends at Nutrition Australia.
Good gut health will help prevent diseases and other health problems and help you to feel great. So, what can you do to keep your gut healthy? We’ve enlisted the help of Chief Nutrition Officer, Clinical Nutritionist Cailie Ford, to find out how.
Eat diverse fruit and vegetables in abundance: Your good gut bugs love variety, so aiming for 30 different types of plant food each week will give your gut health a boost.
Increase your fibre intake: Leave skins on root vegetables to increase the fibre content, and consume grains in their whole form (think brown rice, rolled oats, quinoa).
Stimulate digestive enzymes: Help your digestion and break down of nutrients by eating bitter foods like rocket, and fermented foods like sauerkraut and yoghurt.
Drink for nourishment: Some fluids are better for gut health than others. Reduce alcohol consumption while increasing your consumption of gut-friendly drinks like water, kombucha and herbal teas
- Reduce stress: Your microbiome and your brain communicate through the gut/brain axis. Incorporating stress-reduction activities like moderate exercise, connecting with friends or reading a book are great strategies to support your gut health.
Cailie Ford is a motivational speaker, corporate nutritionist and accredited change manager. Cailie works with businesses across the globe, delivering workshops and programs to support employees to feel better and achieve more.
Wellbeing workshops focus on the relationship between physical and mental wellbeing and their impact on business performance; working towards a healthier, happier and more engaged workforce. Read more about Cailie’s workshop wellbeing offerings.
Cailie also runs a private practice, partnering with individuals on a range of health conditions to empower people to prioritise their wellbeing. Some of Cailie’s areas of interest include gut health, menstrual health, pregnancy and postnatal nutrition, autoimmune conditions and mental health.