Last week I talked about three groups of foods to add to your diet to transform your gut health. This week I’m subtracting from the diet for even greater transformation:
1) Sugar – sugar is one of the biggest dietary culprits in creating imbalance in the gut bacteria. White and brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, and even fruit feed the bad bacteria in your gut creating imbalance and potentially contributing to your health issues. Fruit is a little better than the rest because of it’s fiber content, but should still be eaten in moderation when it is in season. High sugar diets and their effects on the gut bacteria have been linked to bloating, gas, depression and anxiety, learning difficulties, blood sugar imbalances, acid reflux, autoimmune diseases, IBS and more.
2) Antibiotics – are an amazing and life saving medicine and we are lucky to have them. Unfortunately they completely wipe out the entire bacterial culture in the gut and cause more work for the liver and kidneys. Antibiotics also tend to be overused and have lasting negative effects on the gut flora. The bacterial ecosystem in the human gut is one of the most diverse in the world and taking antibiotics is a little like clear cutting the rain forest. If and when it does grow back, it’s never quite the same. Some species of bacteria do not return and initially when all bacteria is wiped out, there is the possibility for the bad bacteria to take over and become more prevalent. If you have to take antibiotics, by all means do so, but check out all your options through Naturopathic medicine, Asian medicine and acupuncture, or whomever you turn to when you need help with your health.
3) Food Sensitivities – I know!! I’m a broken record when it comes to Food Sensitivities, but there’s a good reason for it. My aim with each patient I work with is to help them learn how to care for their bodies through diet and lifestyle changes, and eliminating Food Sensitivities is one of the most effect way to do this. When you eat foods you are sensitive to it creates inflammation and incomplete breakdown of the foods you’ve eaten. These incompletely broken down foods sit in the small intestine and become a feast for the bad bacteria in the gut. This becomes a vicious cycle as the population of bad bacteria grows, emits more toxins, creates more inflammation, less digestion, and more food for themselves thus completing the cycle.
Happy digesting everyone!