We are what we eat. What we choose to put into our bodies is just as important as our physical training. So what about the organ of our body that runs the show?
There are many myths and wives’ tales regarding stomach health; some far too extreme and some simply untrue. Here, we will take a look at the scientifically proven methods we can trust to keep our gut healthy and ready for the next competition.
For a large part of history, the stomach was a complete mystery. Stomach health was mostly dictated by superstition and myths. Luckily, in the past few years there have been strides in our understanding of gut health. We are now at a point where we can gain a full understanding of what is at play in someone’s stomach. So how do we use our modern understanding of the gut to help us achieve optimal health?
Australian company, Microba has developed a fully comprehensive approach. They use a combination of medical expertise and nutrition planning to help patients reach top form. The process begins with a quick at home test. The test is sent back to the lab and analyzed for data on the patients health.
Eventually, they develop a full report, which details the state of the gut’s health. Each patient is given a chart detailing the makeup of their microbiome. It is through this chart that we can begin our journey of bettering gut health.
The Microba approach includes planning for the future. A nutrition coach walks patients through the report and details a plan of action. This mostly means suggesting certain foods to either include or exclude from each person’s diet. This method is perhaps the only true way to gain a full 360 view of our bodies from the inside out.
After learning what prebiotics and probiotics are active in your microbiome through Microba, you can start to make educated changes diet and lifestyle.
Firstly, what is probiotic? Probiotics are live organisms that help promote healthy bacteria growth within the stomach. People also often refer to probiotic rich foods simply as probiotics.
Many cultures around the world have been utilizing probiotics for centuries. In Asia and in Korea in particular, kimchi is a staple of the traditional diet.
Made from fermented cabbage and a few other ingredients, kimchi is one of the richest sources of probiotics. Some other great sources are sauerkraut, kefir and kombucha.
Prebiotics are also known as the indigestible parts of food. This includes food items like apple skin that travel through your body without being digested. This food is carried into the small intestine and eventually ends up in the colon.
Here a prebiotic begins its job of introducing beneficial bacteria into the digestive system. Some prebiotic rich foods include asparagus, leeks, and yams.
Sleep has a huge effect on our microbiome. Studies show a correlation between a lack of sleep and a lack of healthy bacteria in the stomach. To keep the gut healthy, it is best to be on a regular sleep schedule.
In terms of gut health, alcohol is a controversial subject. As a fermented item it has the potential to introduce probiotics into the body but also has the potential to do harm. With many studies saying an occasional drink is a benefit and others claiming the exact opposite, it is best to take a moderate stance.
Keeping the stomach happy
To keep the whole body healthy, you cannot overlook stomach health. Many even refer to it as “the second brain”. It helps regulate our sleep, appetite, and even mood. Needles to say, it is important we treat it with respect. Now is the time to use modern medicine to our advantage and really get to know what is in our gut!