The gut microbiome consists of a variety of bacteria that thrive within your intestines. Unlike the ones that give you sicknesses, these bacteria are beneficial to the health of your digestive system. However, the gut microbiome is vulnerable to damage when you eat unhealthily, which can lead to poor intestinal health. Like the rest of your body, your microbiome deserves care and attention. It pays to know how to improve your gut microbiome if you want to keep your digestive tract healthy.
Eat a Fiber-Rich Diet
The first action you need to do is improve your diet. The microorganisms in your intestines rely on the food you eat. If you eat poorly, your gut microbiome suffers. The death of beneficial bacteria gives pathogenic organisms the opening they need to invade your body and cause disease.
The beneficial bacteria in your intestines thrive on fiber. Your stomach and intestines are unable to digest this nutrient fully. Hence, they can reach the large intestine where they serve as sustenance for your gut microflora. Fiber allows them to keep on living within your body.
Include good sources of fiber in your diet, like apples, oranges, bananas, and dark colored vegetables. Whole-grain foods are also good dietary options.
Avoid Sugar and Sweeteners
Sugar sounds like a good idea at first. It’s easily digestible by both your body and the microbes within it. However, sugar tends to encourage the growth of harmful bacteria. Despite having no calories, artificial sweeteners can also harm your gut microflora by encouraging the growth of harmful bacteria.
Limit the sugary foods you eat, such as sweets or soft drinks. Avoid artificial sweeteners by cutting back on the number of processed foods you consume.
Take Probiotics and Prebiotics
Some food items contain beneficial bacteria since these microorganisms are necessary for food fermentation. These items are called probiotics, and they allow you to replenish the levels of bacteria in your gut. Good probiotics include yogurt, kimchi, and sour cream.
Meanwhile, prebiotics are substances that help maintain the health of the gut microbiome. Think of them as nutrients for the bacteria in your body. Prebiotics include unique forms of carbohydrates found in high-fiber foods. Both probiotics and prebiotics are also available in some food supplements.
People who eat probiotics and prebiotics tend to have more efficient digestive systems. They are less prone to diarrhea and constipation, and they have stronger immune systems.
Avoid Excessive Antibiotic Use
Many common antibiotics kill indiscriminately. They affect beneficial bacteria alongside pathogenic germs. Hence, antibiotics can adversely affect your gut health. Some people develop diarrhea during treatment, as harmful germs start to colonize areas where good bacteria used to reside. You need to be careful about antibiotic overuse, which can bring harm to you by damaging your gut microflora.
Consult With A Gastroenterologist in Texas
To summarize, adjusting your diet is a powerful way to improve your gut microbiome. Make sure to eat high-fiber foods, avoid added sugar and sweeteners, and take in probiotics and prebiotics. You should also take antibiotics carefully.
Austin Gastroenterology specializes in treating gut disorders and maintaining the health of the digestive system. Our diagnostic services can check your gut microbiome by looking for signs of bacterial overgrowth. Our experienced providers can then suggest effective treatments to optimize your gut condition.
You can call our north offices at (512) 244-2273, our central offices at (512) 454-4588, or our south offices at (512) 448-4588. You may also request an appointment through our online form.