Who would have thought a few years ago that the health of our gut would become a buzz subject? The foods that we eat determine our gut health and play a part in overall wellbeing. The battle between good and bad bacteria diet in our digestive system has become a focus for nutritional scientists world-wide as they strive to find the magic key to staying well and keeping young.
If you thought all bacteria was bad then think again, for swimming around in the depths of your digestive system are tens of trillions of friendly bacteria which affect the overall body health. The different species and strains perform a multitude of diverse tasks. This all becomes part of our microbiome, which is an aggregate of all the microbiota that lives within our frame.
These beneficial bacteria aid healthy digestion and the absorption of food by producing different enzymes that break down what we eat to transport nutrients through the gut wall and into the blood stream. They also play a vital role in supporting our immune system.
What you eat can quickly change your microbiome. So which foods are good, and which are the bad foods for your gut health?
Foods to avoid
A typical Western diet doesn’t give the wide variety of foods required for a healthy microbiome.
Avoid refined foods such as white bread and sugar as these can destabilise the delicate balance within the microbiome. There is also evidence that some artificial sweeteners such as aspartame increase the growth of unhealthy bacteria within the gut(1).
Spirits, such as gin, decrease the number of beneficial bacteria whereas red wine consumption can have a positive effect on the gut due to its polyphenol content.
Author: Rejuvenated Limited