It’s that time of year when people make promises to finally get fit! While increasing your physical fitness is admirable and highly encouraged, exercise isn’t the only answer to getting fit and improving your health. Your diet affects your overall mental and physical health. Too much emphasis is placed on the number of calories in a meal or being “fat free”, rather than the quality of the food consumed. While there are numerous fitness options, the number of gyms cannot compete with the availability and affordability of fast food chains.
Digestive Imbalance: A Cause For Concern
A diet lacking proper nutrition can increase your risk of obesity, diabetes, and other inflammation and digestive disorders. Twenty-five percent of the population suffers from some form of digestive disorder, including upper abdominal pain, indigestion, and heartburn. The condition of the stomach’s inner lining relies on a careful balance between aggressive and defensive factors. Disruption of this balance leads to major digestive problems.
Your digestive tract provides a greater function than just processing food. The gastrointestinal tract holds about 85% of your immune system; roughly one hundred trillion healthy bacteria live in the GI tract. These microorganisms improve digestion, increase immunity, and may even help you slim down.
[perfectpullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]The average person does not have enough friendly microorganisms in their digestive tract[/perfectpullquote]
The average person does not have enough friendly microorganisms in their digestive tract. Insufficient levels of beneficial bacteria in the intestines cannot combat the harmful effects of unhealthy bacteria. A high volume of bad bacterium impedes food digestion, produces toxins, and leads to serious health problems.
Probiotics Maintain Balance In The GI Tract
Beneficial microorganisms assist with food absorption, immunity, and mood. One way to encourage the growth of healthy bacteria in your digestive system is to start by eating more fermented foods. Fermented foods are a natural probiotic, full of live bacteria that replenish and maintain the right proportion of healthy microorganisms in your body. Just a half-cup of fermented vegetables, eaten with one to three meals each day, will greatly benefit your digestive health. You can buy vegetables that are already fermented or make your own to promote healthy bacteria in your body.
Diets consisting mainly of processed foods, low fiber, and high sugar, encourage pathogenic bacteria growth that, if left unchecked, will overwhelm the friendly bacteria. For an extra boost to your digestive health, try including a high quality probiotic supplement. The health benefits of probiotics are often understated. The human digestive tract is an exceptionally complex internal habitat. Adding more of the “good” bacteria to your diet will help correct the balance of microorganisms in the GI tract.
Regular consumption of probiotics – natural or supplemented – has proven to be beneficial when treating a range of bodily issues, including irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea, colitis, acne, and eczema. There have been indications that probiotics can also help decrease the likelihood of ulcers, infections, allergies, and diseases.
Evaluate your diet and nutrition, in addition to your physical activity. Be proactive about your digestive health, and don’t wait for a problem to arise.
Eric Lancaster is Executive Vice President of TeraGanix, Inc., the exclusive North America distributor of Effective Microorganisms® and EM® Bokashi products.
He is the technical expert on Effective Microorganisms® for the US market. Please visit www.TeraGanix.com for more information.