Billions of bacteria live in our digestive system. However, this does not mean that they cause illnesses and must be rid from our bodies.
There are 'good' bacteria that we should nurture and allow to proliferate. The key is to have a high level of 'good' bacteria co-existing with low-level of 'harmful' bacteria.
The beneficial bacteria in our digestive tract help us absorb food and minerals. Two examples are the bifidobacterium which is the main and important component amongst the bacteria strains in the gut. The second is lactobacillus acidophilus or commonly known as acidophilus, and together, they suppress harmful bacteria.
What happens when the equilibrium is unbalanced? The digestive can be affected in many ways. However, there are signs that will prompt us to be on the alert.
Diarrhoea, gas, abdominal pains, vomiting, cramps, indigestion and bloating are some conditions that tell us something is not right.
Tips to Good Digestive
Below are some tips to good digestive and gut health.
* Load up on those beneficial bacteria
* Live cultures of 'good' bacteria like bifidobacterium and acidophilus can be found in most yoghurt or yoghurt drinks. Nowadays, these products come in a multitude of flavours to suit all consumers.
* Boost the number of these microorganisms that live in the gut to kill off the 'bad' bacteria.
* Healthy diet
Develop good, healthy eating habits. The first condition to a healthy diet is to eat a wide variety of foods so that you can gather all the different nutritional requirements.
In a nutshell, we should eat more fruits, vegetables, yoghurt and yoghurt drinks, starchy and fresh produce and less sugary, salty, fatty and processed foods.
* Eat more fibre
The best source of fibre and the easiest way to consume it is to eat more fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains.
Nowadays, most breakfast cereals, and those for children too, are packed with fibre, vitamins and nutrients.
Start your day with a healthy serving of breakfast cereals that will take you through to the next meal.
* Healthy weight
Keeping your weight at the desired level is tough but everybody knows the benefits of maintaining a healthy weight. It lowers the risk of coronary diseases like heart attack and stroke, diabetes and hypertension, to name a few.
Be aware of what you consume with a strong emphasis on low fat and low cholesterol foods. Be more active, choose smaller portions during meal times and eat slowly.
* Move more, eat less
Be more active. Choose activities you enjoy and do them every day. If need be, do them with a friend and both of you can keep each other on track. Reduce your intake of sweet drinks and junk food.
* Turn off the TV
Watching less TV can give you more time to exercise and be active.
Also, you will not be enticed by junk food commercials. Two ways of reducing TV watching is by: a) taking it out of your bedroom; and b) switching off the TV during meal times.
* Drink plenty of water
Water helps to soften waste material in the gut and prevents constipation which, if left unchecked, could lead to digestive stress.
* Vitamins and minerals
Try to get all your vitamins and minerals from foods you consume and not from supplements. Also, food provides the 'synergy' that many nutrients require so that they can be efficiently broken down and absorbed in the body.
Once equilibrium is restored, you will enjoy a sense of well-being.
After all, a healthy body brings with it glowing skin, luscious hair and strong nails.
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2:02 PM Digestion