A gut is described as healthy when its flora is well balanced and functions well. It harbors trillions of microorganisms, including viruses, bacteria, and fungi, together with immune cells that fight the harmful microorganism from rising to infectious levels (How to restore gut flora and reset your gut after antibiotics, 2020). The excellent microbiome in the gut is essential in the digestion of food. In addition, it sends a signal to the brain via the body nerves and hormonal l system, helping achieve general body stability. Conversely, when the gut flora is not well balanced, it leads to digestive problems like bloating, constipation, loose stool, nausea, stomach pain, jaundice, weight loss, among others. Therefore, it is critical to keep the flora balanced.
Maintaining a balanced gut microbiome can be achieved either naturally or by the use of artificial means, for example, in curbing the problems through eating prebiotics, food rich in dietary fiber like fresh vegetables, nuts, and seed legumes like legumes barley, rye, apples, mushrooms, wheat, whole grains, and garlic. In addition, reducing stress and maintaining a healthy weight through regular exercises and achieving adequate sleep also boosts a well-balanced microbiome, naturally (Pre and probiotics: What are they and how do they work? [Infographic], 2021). Finally, a well-balanced gut microbiome achievement uses probiotics-rich foods like kefir, yogurt, sauerkraut, and supplements.
Factors compromising the gut's health include alcoholism that alters the gut barrier and the speed at which food moves to the exit and may increase the number of pathogenic microorganisms in the gastrointestinal tract. Many pathogenic microorganisms result in further digestive problems like bloating and diarrhea (What causes alcohol intolerance and alcohol flush reaction?, 2020). Snacking also triggers the continuous release of postprandial inflammation and unhealthy weight gain. Antibiotics alter the gut flora by damaging the lining of the gut and intestines and disturbing the microflora. The regular uptake of antibiotics to cure sore throats and common cold caused by viral infections should stop.
However, if the gut is unhealthy; it is possible to improve its health by eating anti-inflammatory foods and drinks like vegetables and fruits, increasing water uptake while avoiding alcohol and coffee, sleeping while establishing a regular sleeping pattern, and including high fiber food to diet like lentils and beans, smoothies and vegetable salads. Doing regular exercises, eating fermented foods like sauerkraut, kefir, practicing body relaxing techniques, and keeping off from taking antibiotics without a doctor’s prescription are also others ways of keeping the gut healthy(What is a circadian rhythm and how to reset your body clock?, 2021).