Over the last few weeks, radio listeners across the country will have heard more in-depth insight into the inner workings of the gut.
Noted best-selling health author and presenter, Liz Earle MBE, has featured in a number of radio interviews following the release of her eBook, ‘A Flatter, Happier Tum’.
In the discussions, Liz outlined the importance of the gut microbiome, and the trillions of bacteria that inhabit it. Using Bimuno® as an example, Liz also demonstrated the exciting potential of prebiotic supplements as a way to feed and nourish the helpful good gut bacteria that the body needs.
Below, we cover some of the key learnings from Liz.
Bacteria are essential
When we hear the word ‘bacteria’, we can see it as a negative, but in reality our bodies rely on them to function! There are good bacteria which have benefits to physical and mental health, as well as bad bacteria which do not. When we talk about ‘gut health’, we are often talking about the composition of the gut microbiome i.e., how much good bacteria we have compared to bad.
Gut Microbiome Awareness
Because gut bacteria are so crucial to how the body performs, there are real benefits to learning more about these microbes. Liz highlighted that a huge expanse of health professionals, from dermatologists to mental health experts, are focusing on the gut microbiome today to unlock potential benefits.
She highlighted that there are two clear stages to supporting gut health – populating the gut with ‘good bacteria’ with probiotics that comes with additional advantages to health, and then feeding them the right nutrients through prebiotics to help them flourish.
Prebiotics vs probiotics
The two categories of prebiotics and probiotics may sound similar, but they operate towards the same goal in very different ways. Probiotics, such as kefir or fermented foods, introduce live cultures and bacteria into the gut to raise the number of good bacteria. In contrast, prebiotics such as Bimuno feed and nourish the good bacteria that are already present in the gut microbiome.
Growing fibre gap
Liz mentioned that there is a nutritional gap when it comes to our everyday diet. Studies on behalf of Public Health England show that just 9% of adults in the UK are reaching the recommended daily intake of 30g, including 5g of prebiotic fibre. Prebiotic fibre can be found naturally in many fruits, vegetables and legumes – as well as whole grain oats. However, some individuals may struggle to easily increase their intake through diet alone, which is where a supplement such as Bimuno could be particularly helpful.
The importance of good gut bugs
In this series of interviews, Liz outlined some of the important benefits that good bacteria give us. Our gut bacteria can influence digestive discomfort such as bloating, which can be improved with a more favourable gut microbiome composition. Similarly, Liz also touched on the gut microbiome’s role in mental health.
One example is serotonin. We associate this anxiety-reducing neurotransmitter with the brain, but in fact the vast majority of serotonin originates in the gut. The gut microbiome and the brain can send signals back and forth, so if you’ve ever wondered why your emotions are often so closely tied to your gut, that might be why! Because the gut can play a role in our mental health and cognition, the gut bacteria can also influence sleep health and could be the key to a restful night’s sleep.
As Liz explained the reasons she includes Bimuno in her daily routine, she also highlighted that gut health should be long term.
“Once you have gut bugs established, we need to keep them flourishing. If we don’t take care of them and only feed them crisps and high sugar foods, they have nothing to feed on and they won’t survive. Then the process needs to start again!”
The key lies in thinking about our gut microbiome a little bit more and framing the food narrative slightly differently. Instead of hoping our gut bacteria can use whatever we give them, it’s helpful to actively select foods to incorporate valuable fibre that the bacteria can thrive on.
A Flatter, Happier Tum
During the interviews, Liz mentioned her eBook, ‘A Flatter, Happier Tum’. The eBook breaks down the fundamentals of gut health into simple, everyday changes we can all make that can add up to make a real difference! Designed to act as a guide, the eBook also stresses the important relationship between gut health and weight loss, which also centres around our gut bacteria.
Did you catch the radio interviews with Liz Earle? If not, don’t worry – there are learning resources available on Bimuno.com.
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