How to reset your gut: 10 simple and effective tips

Do you experience stomach problems often? If you are looking for ways to ward off gut problems, here's how you can reset your gut!
View All Images woman with a healthy gut
Here's how you can maintain gut health. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Arushi Bidhuri Updated: 5 Jun 2024, 18:44 pm IST
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Your gut health is fundamental to overall health. It impacts several bodily functions ranging from digestion, immunity, mental health and weight management to skin health, hormonal balance and detoxification. It is, hence, a no-brainer that when your gut health is out of whack, your body can suffer a lot. When harmful bacteria take over good bacteria in your gut, you will need to know how to reset your gut for healthy living.

What is gut health?

Gut refers to your gastrointestinal system, which includes your stomach, intestines, and colon. It helps you digest foods and absorb nutrients in these foods. A healthy gut means that it should have a healthy gut microbiome and limited digestive problems. Did you know more than 200 different bacteria, viruses and fungi live in your large intestine? These organisms in your gut are known as gut microbiomes, which help break down nutrients to help your body use them.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
It is important to maintain your gut health to keep digestive problems at bay. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Why is gut health important?

Gut microbiome are microorganisms that live in your intestines. There are about 200 different species of these microorganisms in your gut. While some microorganisms present in your gut are good for you, others can be harmful. A study published in the British Medical Journal found that different bacteria in your gut can reduce the risk of conditions such as diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and psoriatic arthritis.

The gut is very complex and it has been linked to a variety of conditions over the past years. When your gut is not healthy, it can impact both your physical and mental health so it is important to keep it in check. A study published in the journal Nutrients found that poor gut health can lead to:

  • Endocrine conditions
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Mental health disorders
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cancer

Signs you have an unhealthy gut

Here are some signs and symptoms that your gut health is not in the best of state:

  • Upset stomach
  • Feeling tired
  • Insomnia or poor sleep
  • Bloating or abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Extreme food cravings
  • Unintentional weight gain or loss
  • Skin problems like acne, eczema and psoriasis
  • Migraines
  • Thyroid
  • Changes in mood
  • Anxiety
  • Common cold

How to reset your gut health?

You can improve your gut health by making some lifestyle and dietary changes:

1. Eat more fibre-rich foods

Fibre is the holy grain nutrient when it comes to your digestive health. It affects the function of your gut, the digestion process, and the absorption of nutrients. Your gut bacteria break down fibre that helps you protect yourself from your gastrointestinal conditions, found a study published in journal Microorganisms. Some foods that are high in fibre include vegetables, beans, legumes, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds, berries, oatmeal, brown rice, bran cereal, and wholewheat pasta.

2. Include a diverse range of foods in your diet

From different fruits to vegetables, include a range of different vitamins, minerals, and other nutrient-rich foods in your diet. The more diverse range of foods you add to your diet, the more diverse the microbiome in your gut, will help keep it healthy. Try to add more plant-based foods to your diet increases beneficial bacteria in your gut, found a study published in the journal Nutrients.

3. Avoid ultra-processed foods

While almost all foods are processed to some level, it is best to eat foods that are not highly processed. A study published in Nature Reviews Gastroenterology and Hepatology found that ultra-processed foods (UPFs) and food additives can increase the risk of developing certain gut diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and colorectal cancer. You should obtain more nutrients from plant-based foods and lean proteins.

4. Stay hydrated

Did you know water acts as a lubricant that facilitates the movement of food along the digestive tract? A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that people who drank more water had fewer bacteria that can trigger gastrointestinal problems. You should drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day to avoid problems and promote gut health.

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5. Get enough sleep

Believe it or not, sleep can affect your health in more ways than one. Not getting enough sleep or a bad quality of sleep can lead to several sleep problems. A PLOS ONE study found that sleep deprivation can lead to problems with gut health. It is important to get at least 7-8 hours of interrupted sleep every night to avoid gut problems.

6. Eat slowly

Eating slowly is proven to be good for digestion and improves gut health. It is important that you chew your food properly and eat your meals slowly. Not only will it help improve your gut health, but also help reduce the chances of obesity and diabetes which also helps you make better food choices.

7. Probiotics may help

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are healthy for your digestive health. They are often referred to as “good” bacteria as they can help keep your gut healthy. A study published in the journal Molecules found that probiotics regulate the gut microbiome, and strengthen the intestinal barrier which can help keep digestive problems at bay. Probiotics are generally found in fermented foods such as yoghurt, cheese, kimchi, kombucha, kefir, tempeh and sauerkraut.

8. Do not ignore food intolerances

Feeding your body what your gut cannot process can lead to digestive issues. If you want to reset your gut, it is best to be on the lookout for the symptoms that indicate a food intolerance. You should stop consuming certain foods if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Acid reflux
  • Gas
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloating

9. Eat more collagen-rich foods

Collagen is a protein produced by your body that provides structure, and support and strengthens your bones, muscles, skin, and connective tissues. It is also considered an important protein for your gut health. A study published in Marine Drugs found that collagen is good for your gut microbiome. However, more research is required to know its effects on your gut health. Some foods rich in collagen include broccoli, citrus fruits, eggs, nuts, and meat. Click here to know more about collagen-rich foods!

10. Eat more garlic

Garlic is believed to be a good addition to a gut-healthy diet. It is believed to be beneficial for your intestines and reduce inflammation. It may help you get rid of intestinal worms and protect your gut health. A study published in the journal Nutrients found that eating garlic improved gut health and increased gut microbiome in rodents.

garlic
Eat more garlic to ward off gut problems. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

11. Keep stress levels in check

High levels of stress can affect your whole body, including your gut. A study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences found that chronic stressors can have negative effects on your brain and gut health. It is best to keep stress levels in check to avoid complications.

If you experience signs that indicate that your gut health is not in the best shape, try incorporating these changes in your lifestyle and diet to avoid it from getting worse.

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About the Author

Arushi Bidhuri is a journalist with 7 years of experience in writing, editing, and conceptualizing story ideas across different genres, including health and wellness, lifestyle, politics, beauty, fashion, and more. Arushi has a strong connection in the industry that helps her write concise and original stories as she believes in working towards writing pieces that can enlighten people. ...Read More

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