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Let’s Talk About Gut Health...

Ness Herrera

Did you know that how you eat, and how you live can actually affect your gut bacteria and can be the root of most health conditions?

 

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But how do you identify whether you have a “gut issue?” Below are some issues associated with bad gut health and how you can naturally heal yourself from the inside-out!

 

 

 

Examples of having good gut bacteria:

  • Great digestion
  • Easily absorb essential vitamins and minerals that your body needs
  • Strengthens your immune system
  • Clear complexion
  • Energy boost

Examples of bad gut bacteria:

  • Skin problems – acne, eczema etc
  • Mental state – stress, anxiety etc
  • Digestion issues – bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhoea etc

To help you identify whether you gut needs improving, here are some common warning signs to look for:

Mental State

Your gut health can contribute to the health of your brain. Things like depression, anxiety, OCD, “brain fog” or the ability to focus are attributed to your bad gut bacteria. When you are feeling lethargic, tired, moody and also completely unmotivated – this can be very much so linked back to having bad gut bacteria. In my research, scientists have also linked behavioural traits such as OCD and elements of Autism to be associated with bad gut health.

Digestive Issues

Generally when you get heart burn, your first thought would be to take an antacid, true? Doctors are always quick to prescribe antacids for this as heart burn and acid reflux symptoms… I know, because I was one of them for years and years before I started to learn and research about my body! Gas, bloating and either or both constipation and diarrhoea are other signs of a bad gut.

Well what If I were to tell you it was your poor choice of foods (sugary, fatty, processed foods) has contributed to this?

Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies

A healthy gut is essential when it comes to helping your body synthesise and produce vitamins and minerals.

When your gut bacteria isn’t at its best, your body your body has a harder time trying to absorb the following minerals:

  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin D & K
  • Vitamin B12

If you have had a blood test at your local GP lately, and you are deficient in any of the above you might have an unhealthy gut!

Chronic Stress

Stress comes in many shapes and sizes in our lives, and often it is out of our control. High cortisol levels contributes to many of our bodily functions, as well as hinder our health and fitness results. Stress causes fatigue, anxiety, increase your blood pressure and essentially wear us down! Not to mention; cause major issues with out gut! When people manifest stress physically, it can lead to digestions issues such as bloating, diarrhea, vomiting, inflammation, constipation, hinder absorption of vitamins and minerals and pain.

When you don’t manage your stress, this will raise cortisol levels, which can stop the gut from working properly.

Skin Conditions

Ok... this one hits REALLLLLLY close to home for me!

Unbalanced gut bacteria has a lot to skin conditions, one of which has hit me for 6 in the past, and that was with ACNE. Without fail, after I eat a sugary treat or “bad meal”, no doubt within a day or two I have a blind cystic pimple! This is my gut essentially crying asking me “WHHYYYY DID YOU FEED ME CRAP!”

Skin conditions such as the following are also associated with unhealthy gut bacteria:

  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
  • Rosacea

Here are Some Simple Steps to Help Heal Your Gut from the Inside Out!

After reading the above, if there is anything that stands out to you that you feel like you might want to investigate, and learn to heal your gut naturally, keep reading below!

Take action now to improve and balance your good gut bacteria – and improve your life!

1. Avoid Toxins & Bad Food

By eating bad foods, you are encouraging your bad bacteria to grow in your gut, creating a lovely little home for it to live and fester – resulting in a myriad of issues for your overall well-being. When your constantly “feeding the beast” that is bad bacteria with sugar, processed foods, high fat and unhealthy oils, you are essentially breaking down your gut lining, allowing for the bacteria to grow further.

The first step to reversing this trend is to avoid toxic foods. These include:

  • Grains & gluten
  • Dairy
  • Sugar – eliminate where ever possible, always read the back of food labels for the hidden sugars in food
  • Preservatives (found in most packaged and processed foods)
  • Processed, packaged and or old meats
  • Unhealthy oils
  • Antibiotics – as much as possible, however ALWAYS pair with Inner Health Plus or and other brand of good bacteria promoting products.

2. Natural Superfoods

Environmental toxins, and those that transmit into our foods is hard to steer away from – but this is a whole new topic to touch on…

For optimal gut health, I personally believe in a holistic approach and healing your gut naturally.

I choose to have each morning the following:

lemon

Lemon Juice - lemon juice helps to ease indigestion and an upset stomach as it “tricks” our live into producing bile and assist with moving through our digestive tract. (read more about the benefits of lemon juice HERE)

 

Apple cider vinegar

Apple Cider vinegar – to cleanse your liver and also assist with acid reflux as it neutralises your stomach acid.

I always will have 1 table spoon every morning, or as a dressing on salad!

These are my base two ingredients every day.

 

 

From there on, often I will add X50 Instant Super Greens Smoothie ** every 2-3 days. Great for alkalising your body, promoting good gut health, a clear complexion, gluten free, sugar free and contains organic ingredients. Not to mention the natural energy kick you get because of the added vitamins and minerals!

** You can get 10% off any X50 Products using my code: NESS10

As well as eat Sauerkraut in salads or as s side with meals as this is awesome for promoting good bacteria in your gut!

Start small and simple - things such as a shot of apple cider vinegar and lemon of a morning can help with this STRAIGHT AWAY. And I swear by this; Why? Because I had struggled with Acid Reflux for years and my prognosis by doctors was that I had “reflux disease.” Once I cleaned by diet up, and naturally healed my gut – I haven’t had the need to take medication in over 3 years!

LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! Your gut health telling you to stop

Hot tip for your Skin!!

By mixing honey on a wedge of lemon and rubbing it on a freshly cleaned face can assist with reducing marks on your skin, dissolve blackheads and also help with clearing up your skin! Lemons are filled with AHA's and BHA's which remove dead skin cells and help clear up blackheads, acne, while honey is a natural antioxidant and antibacterial. Try this 1 – 2 times per week, you will be surprised!

honey and lemon

3. Take A Probiotic Supplements

Yes, yes YES! Probiotics are amazing, I strongly recommend a good brand to assist with your gut health. In addition to eating fermented foods (a great natural source of good gut bacteria), to speed up the repair of your gut health, you can always implement a good probiotic supplement. Stay away from “bargain bin” prices. You get what you pay for.

4. Manage Your Stress

Believe it or not, lowering and controlling your stress levels is on par with basically eating as much crap as possible and screwing up your gut. Stress management should really be a priority, it has more of a physical effect on our bodies than people realise. Because if you don’t notice it now – you should after reading this.

Managing your stress will reduce inflammation, lower cortisol levels, and improve your gut health.

Here are a few tips:

  • Meditate before you go to sleep – put yourself in a relaxed hypnotic state so that you rest
  • Eliminate the stressors in your life; bad relationships, food, environment, job – this list goes on
  • Exercise regularly – this is YOUR time. Your time to de-stress, let some energy out, focus, and focus on something positive, make personal gains and feel good.
  • Walk outside. Sounds simple, but getting some fresh air can do wonders for our mind.
  • Get a massage – again, YOUR time.
  • Catch up with friends, socialise, take your mind off what’s truly troubling you.

5. Sleep!

Being deprived of sleep raises our cortisol levels, which then In turn hinders our results in the gym, harms our gut bacteria and not to mention, makes it difficult to focus and function in our day to day lives.

By resting, you will lower your cortisol levels and improve your gut health!