How Gut Health Affects Your Health, Weight Loss, and Mood?

The increasing complexity of the digestive tract and its importance to our overall health is a topic of increasing research in the medical community. Maintaining a healthy, functioning gut, is truly one of the keys to overall health and wellness. Everything from your hormone production to immune system, to your brain, is connected to your digestive tract. Research is increasingly showing that microbiota living in our digestive tract plays a crucial role in maintaining the health of our digestive tract along with other far-fetching systems throughout our body. One of those systems includes regulation of our feelings and our emotions.

Yep, it is true – you are what you eat.

Our gut bacteria challenge everything we know about diet and weight loss – Not some foreign infection but little bugs that live within our body. The most promising part of it all, how food influences our gut could be the best way to control our mood and manage our weight.

For instance, do you find yourself constantly craving for spicy stuff or not satisfied after you eat? This could be the doing of the microbiome. These microscopic bugs living in our digestive tract fight to control our thoughts from our gut. And we are not talking about the urges caused by feeling hungry.

Experts at Yes Wellness say you start to see interesting patterns when there is an imbalance in your digestive tract, such as:

  • Creation of acne and your skin health can be influenced by your microbiome. Bad gut bacteria triggers inflammation and can cause red spots
  • Your gut bacteria can influence your rational decision making
  • Feelings of depression or anxiety can be activated or controlled by your microbiome
  • Your gut bacteria can also influence which foods you like and which you don’t

There are several times more bacteria living in our gut than there are cells in our entire body. This results in our body making alliances with the majority of the microorganisms. The microbiome aid in proper digestion and even produces Vitamin K2, one of the most important nutrients.

However, not all the bugs are eager to be friends with our body. There are ‘bad’ bacteria as well. And even the ‘good’ ones can turn rogue and start harming our body when things like the use of prescription medications, bad dietary habits, stress, lifestyle, and other factors shake up our digestive tract.  This is when things get ugly, and the main reason why one of the biggest areas of research is trying to determine the relationship between our gut bacteria and medical conditions such as obesity, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and even cancer.

A healthier Microbiome- Probiotics and Prebiotics

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can be found in fermented foods like yogurt and drinks like kombucha and kefir. Probiotics provide several health benefits including better digestion, enhanced immune function, protection against microbial infections, and much more.

Prebiotics, on the other hand, are foods that feed the microbes that are already in our body. Prebiotics are important as they influence the bacteria in our digestive tract in such a way that it improves our health and well-being.

Essentially, you help the microorganisms by feeding them and the microorganisms help you in return by keeping the inflammation down, protecting you from bad bugs, and so on.

How the Microbiome Affects you?

The gut-brain axis is a two-way communication line between our brain and gut. Both can affect one another – for worse or for better. When the bugs in our gut feel any discomfort, the signals that get relayed back up to our brain might cause mood disorders or worsen anxiety. Stress, on the other hand, is the feeling that you experience when you worry about paying the bills or you have got looming deadlines. This stress can impact your gut bacteria adversely, and shift it in a least-favorable direction.

Gut Dysbiosis is a condition that happens when there is an imbalance of gut bacteria favoring the pathogenic microorganisms. This type of imbalance is linked to a number of problems such as digestive disorders like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and inflammatory bowel diseases.

These conditions can manifest you in many different ways from weight loss, fatigue, diarrhea, or abdominal pain. Gut health issues may also trigger skin problems like rosacea.

Moreover, our gut produces most of the feel-good chemicals in our body. Our digestive tract produces 90% of the body’s serotonin and when there is an imbalance of bad bacteria and good bacteria, the gut becomes inflamed leading to an increased intestinal permeability causing depression and anxiety.

Final Words

Exercising regularly and eating a healthy and balanced diet can help you improve your gut health. Many health professionals recommend consuming probiotic as it promotes the growth of ‘good bacteria.’ If you experience anything unpleasant, immediately see your doctor.