I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and are looking forward to an amazing 2020!
I don’t know about you, but I am still suffering from too much holiday! Although my weeks were full of loving family and friends, they were also filled with an overabundance of “good cheer.” The family dinners were amazingly delicious, the holiday treats definitely decadent, too much red wine, and of course, there were many excuses why I couldn’t find the time for my normal exercise routine!
It is amazing how even just a few weeks of overindulgence in carbohydrate-rich foods and alcohol, along with holiday stress, lack of regular exercise, and altered sleep, can leave you feeling sluggish, bloated and simply “out of wack.” Not only do these holiday habits pack on the pounds, but they can also wreak havoc on your gut. Any disruption in the gut microbiome leads to poor digestion and nutrient absorption, a weakened immune response and systemic inflammation. All issues that will leave your body and bones feeling “unwell.”
Emerging research suggests that a healthy microbiome is essential for strong, healthy bones. Gut dysbiosis (an overgrowth of potentially harmful bacteria and a decrease in beneficial bacteria) and leaky gut (increased intestinal permeability) can lead to inflammation. Inflammation in turn stimulates the over production of osteoclasts while suppressing osteoblast formation. The result? An increase in bone loss and a decrease in new bone formation. In addition, if you are not adequately digesting or absorbing nutrients, the very foundation of your bones suffers.
Luckily there are several things you can do to help restore your gut health and get yourself back the bone building track after the holiday season.
Below are some tips to help you get started rebuilding your gut health. Then, keep an eye out for an additional email coming tomorrow with a special offer to help you KickStart all healthy habits your body and bones need for the New Year!
4 Tips to Restore Your Gut Health
1. Increase Fiber. Gut bacteria thrive on fiber! When restoring the gut, it is really important to consume high fiber foods such as whole grains, vegetables and fruits. Some of the best foods to eat when restoring and rebalancing your gut microbiota are foods rich in prebiotic fibers such as: Legumes, oats, bananas, berries, Jerusalem artichokes (not the same as regular artichokes), asparagus, garlic, onions and leeks. Prebiotic fibers supply nutrients to the beneficial bacteria in your gut so they can populate and flourish.
2. Choose Organic, Non-GMO Foods. Just as important as eating these fiber rich foods is to make sure they are organic and non-GMO. Pesticides are designed to kill unwanted bacteria on crops. Your gut is populated with trillions of health-supporting bacteria. Ongoing exposure to pesticides coming in on our food sources can kill off these important intestinal bacteria. This can create dysbiosis and cause a breakdown in the intestinal barrier leading to systemic inflammation. By eating organic and non-GMO foods, you can lessen your exposure to gut bacteria destroying pesticides.
3. Eliminate Sugar and Alcohol. Sugar can block the production of a key protein called Roc. Roc is required for colonization of beneficial bacterium in the gut. Alcohol can also cause dysbiosis and gut inflammation, resulting in gut permeability.
4. Don’t Forget to take those Probiotics. Probiotics can help rebalance the bacteria in the gut. You can take a probiotic or add kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut or, if dairy tolerant, yogurt or kefir. Be sure to choose plain yogurt/kefir and sweeten with organic fruits or a touch of raw honey if needed.
The start of a New Year is always a great time to refresh and restart your lifestyle! Tomorrow I am going to be sharing with you my exciting news for the New Year. So be sure to check your inbox to learn more about my plans to better serve you and your health needs in 2020.