What exactly are we talking about when we talk about gut health, and why is gut health so important?

The phrase “gut health” seems to be getting a lot of attention as an important factor in leading a healthy lifestyle–and for good reason. Gut health refers to the function and balance of bacteria in our guts that help to breakdown and digest the foods we eat. But when the gut is out of balance, it can lead to a host of digestive issues, including abdominal pain, bloating, loose stools, constipation, heartburn, nausea or vomiting. Left unchecked, these symptoms can lead to wider issues.

But the good news is, there are ways to better regulate your gut health through adding certain vitamins and minerals through either diet or supplementation, which will help keep your digestive system functioning at its peak. Read on to learn more about why gut health is important and how you can achieve ultimate gut balance.

Ways to Improve Gut Health

A gut imbalance can cause a wide variety of negative effects on the body and mind, including anxiety, brain fog, rashes, headaches, and difficulty losing weight. These issues occur when the bacteria present in your gut are deficient, too plentiful, or otherwise out of balance. The lining of your stomach and other organs contributing to digestive health are sensitive and full of good bacteria, so it’s important to keep them functioning well by giving them the nutrients they need to optimize digestion and, in turn, your health.

Luckily, there are a number of things you can do to improve your gut health.

  1. Get Enough Sleep: Quality, uninterrupted sleep can help with your gut health, as well as other health issues you may be facing.
  2. Decrease Stress: Stress wreaks havoc on more than your digestive system. Finding ways to reduce your stress, whether it’s exercise, mediation, or other strategies, is key to helping to balance out your entire body and mind.
  3. Eat Slowly: Give your body time to digest food and absorb nutrients. This can help you feel fuller and maximize the benefits of the food you eat.
  4. Stay Hydrated: Water helps maintain the health of the lining of your digestive system, so drink up!
  5. Take a prebiotic or probiotic: Prebiotics and probiotics can help balance out the bacteria in your gut. Prebiotics provide the fuel bacteria need to grow and live while probiotics introduce live bacteria into your body—the good kind. A quality probiotic such as BELDT Labs Bedrock Series Probiotics supports optimal gut health by promoting a healthy gut and alleviating digestive issues. By introducing supplementation into your daily routine, you can help improve athletic and cognitive function and avoid the negative physical and mental effects of an unbalanced gut and digestive system.

  1. Pay Attention to Food Intolerances: Pay attention to your body’s responses to certain foods. Try excluding trigger foods from your diet to see if your digestive issues resolve.
  2. Change Your Diet: Switching from highly processed, high-fat, and high-sugar foods to healthier plant-based and lean proteins can help promote a healthier gut.

Fueling a Healthy Gut

A number of foods can help balance out your gut. Fresh vegetables and fruits are excellent choices, while lean proteins such as chicken and fish are great options. Avoiding excess alcohol and fatty foods can help prevent digestive issues such as acid reflux. To help boost protein and fiber, two essential nutrients for optimal gut health, nuts, seeds, and legumes such as beans and lentils are excellent. Collagen rich foods such as bone broths, also are shown to have a positive effect on gut health.1 And when you cannot get the collagen you need from food, supplementation is a great alternative. BELDT Labs Bedrock Series Collagen Peptides not only helps enhance the look of your hair, skin, and nails, but it's collagen-rich formula plays an important role in balancing out the gut, too.

With adequate sleep, a balanced diet, supplementation, and regular exercise, you can achieve a healthy gut that helps you feel your best and find the energy and mental clarity you need to lead a happier, healthier life.