Gut Health Foods for Gut Flora
In order to fight off disease and infection it is important to have a healthy bacterial community living in our gut. So often we come into contact with viruses and pathogenic bacteria, our gut bacteria is vital to fight off these nasties. Eating gut health foods is one of the best ways to improve our gut flora and enable our body to better fight off disease and infection.
The Gut and our Immune System
Our intestinal bacteria determines the quality of our immune system in a few ways:
- It provides a physical barrier for the build-up of foreign microbes
- The good bacteria in our gut ‘talks’ to the immune system telling it what to attack
- It influences the growth and formation of immune-functioning organs, such as our thymus
In our society where antibiotics, strict hygiene and highly processed foods are the norm, we have less of an opportunity to introduce bacteria into our gut. As a result our immune systems are often not strong enough to easily cope with the pathogenic bacteria when it does invade our bodies.
Balancing Gut Flora
It’s true that antibiotics will often destroy the “bad” bacteria that can mess up our system. Did you know that antibiotics also destroy “good” bacteria which are necessary for an effective immune system. By destroying the good bacteria there is opportunity for “bad” bacteria to fester and imbalance our gut bacteria. Highly processed food also feeds the “bad” bacteria and weakens the “good” bacteria, unbalancing the gut microbes.
By eating properly fermented foods, we can introduce good bacteria into our gut and replenish our gut flora. This will gradually strengthen your immune system. As your system becomes accustomed to the bacteria, our guts are normalised and will begin to function more effectively. In turn, our immune system is better able to cope when it’s hit by bad bacteria.
There are many different types of gut health foods. Fermented vegetables are traditionally the most common, the safest, and possibly the yummiest. You can buy fermented veggies from our online shop, or perhaps you can learn to make your own.
Gut health foods are important for our immune system, but there are other reasons that you should eat fermented foods.