Did you know that the majority of your immune system is located in your digestive tract? Improving the type and quality of food you ingest is the first step toward improving overall health. In addition to eliminating foods that cause inflammation in the body, try adding probiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms (bacteria) that enhance gut health.
You can consume probiotics two ways: eating certain foods or taking probiotic supplements.
Fermented foods contain probiotics, so try fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut and kimchi or fermented dairy such as kefir and Greek yogurt. Kombucha (fermented tea) is also a good option, but watch the sugar content (≤ 4 grams per serving).
There are a lot of options when it comes to supplements. For a probiotic to be effective, it has to be live bacteria. Many of the brands on the market are dead by the time they hit the shelves. Go for refrigerated products so that you know you are getting live bacteria.
Experiment with different brands to see which is right for you. Each brand features different bacteria strains or combinations of strains. Take note of the way a brand affects your digestion, mood and energy (allow for 30 days with one brand to assess the impact). You may find the best results by rotating different brands to get different strains into your system.
In addition to improving gut health and digestion, probiotics can help with thyroid imbalances, chronic fatigue, joint pain, psoriasis, autism and many other conditions. Moreover, they can prevent urinary tract infections, heal inflammatory bowel conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and fight food-borne illnesses.
Try some and see. You might be surprised by the results!
Editor’s Note: This post features content from Alkalign’s Nourish program. Ready to learn more? Join our Holiday Mini Challenge or email email@example.com for info on our full session starting January 2017.