Most of us are aware of the concept of gut health and understand its importance to our overall wellbeing, but what exactly does having a healthy gut mean? Our gut is home to millions of microorganisms, with about 1,000 distinct species, including various types of viruses, bacteria, yeast and other fungal bodies. Some of these microorganisms are harmful to our health and the others are very beneficial and important for a healthy body. Studies on people who have lived to be 100 years old in Blue Zones around the world have also shown that the structure and function of the gut microbiome determine whether or not a person will live to be 100 years old in good health. These people also appear to have high populations of good bacteria.
A healthy gut is said to be when there is a good balance between the good as well as the bad bacteria and viruses. In other words, if your gut health is poor, your immune system, hormones, and general health will suffer as a result. Some of the research has also indicated that having a variety of bacteria in your gut may lower the risk of diseases, including psoriatic arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and diabetes.
According to studies, the secret to healthy aging may lie in maintaining a healthy gut. Everything starts with our gut. It facilitates the breakdown of the food we eat, takes in nutrients, and utilizes them to energize and sustain our body. It is, therefore, more difficult to maintain good health and healthy aging if our gut is out of balance and our immune system isn’t functioning properly. Our body eliminates metabolic waste and pollutants in our gut.
However, our body will find it difficult to eliminate those toxins if we have a poor digestive system. People, therefore, encounter symptoms, including brain fog, constipation, joint discomfort, etc. Some of the tips to improve gut health and boost immunity and aging recommend consuming a variety of fruits, vegetables, and legumes (fruits and vegetables are the best sources of nourishment for a healthy microbiome since they are high in fiber). Fiber may be broken down by certain bacteria in our stomach, which encourages the growth of those bacteria. Legumes and beans both contain a lot of fiber.
Bifidobacteria, for instance, are beneficial bacteria because they may lessen intestinal inflammation and enhance gut health. It has been proven that eating foods including apples, artichokes, blueberries, almonds, and pistachios increases a person’s Bifidobacteria levels.
The majority of the bacteria in our guts have a symbiotic connection with our bodies, which means that both of our systems contribute to the health and growth of these microorganisms as well as their support of bodily functions. They generate vitamins, fatty acids, and amino acids that are necessary for a variety of processes, including immune system health, digestion, mood management, and more. Exercise on a regular basis quickens the process, increasing the variety of microbial species in the stomach and promoting the growth of bacteria.
Microbiome may also be badly impacted by excessive drinking. Recurrent alcohol consumption is connected to gastritis, an inflammation of the gut that causes discomfort. Heartburn, ongoing pain, ulcers, and bacterial infections can all result from such inflammation. Additionally, excessive drinking is linked to intestinal inflammation, which is an indication of a bad gut. According to research, this form of inflammation can upset the microbiota’s balance and change how well it functions.
Probiotics may improve or prevent gut inflammation as well as other intestinal or systemic disease phenotypes by reestablishing the balance of the gut microbiome and introducing beneficial functionalities to gut microbiome. Probiotics may be very useful for elderly people, notably in terms of infection prevention and potentially also in the prevention of a number of age-related disorders.
It is important to make sure that the body has adequate levels of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and even microorganisms to make sure we perform and function at our peak. Different supplements like Glutathione, Magnesium complex, NAD+ booster, Alpha KetoGlutarate, Probiotics, Colostrum and Omegas constantly help our body manage this network of metabolism and make sure that no processes in our body are short-circuited because of lack of an important molecule.
Modern diets are heavy in fatty, salty, or sugary processed foods, which may impair the aging gut, whereas higher fiber foods like fruits, vegetables, seeds, beans, and nuts, together with regular exercise, may assist maintain a healthy gut microbial balance as we age. As a result, it may serve as a warning sign for a variety of chronic illnesses.
(The author is Chief Scientific Officer, Decode Age)