Open the hatch, put the food in and you’re done? It’s not that simple. After all, food isn’t just there to promote a feeling of fullness. Our food provides our organism with numerous nutrients and keeps the intestinal bacteria happy at the same time. If you’re feeding the wrong gut bacteria, it can affect your immune system.

We reveal why the intestinal mucosa is a good interlocutor and take a closer look on foods that help digestion. We also take a closer look at foods that destroy the intestines in the long run.

Intestinal Mucosa – a Talkative Host

Your intestine is about the size of a basketball court. That sounds incredible, but it’s true. If it were completely spread out on the floor, the result would be 400 m². This immense area offers plenty of opportunities for our natural enemies such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi to attack. The intestinal flora is composed of a multitude of “good” and “bad” bacteria.

If this delicate balance gets out of balance, it can have a direct impact on our state of health. If, for example, the good bacteria are significantly reduced by taking antibiotics, there is a risk of increased susceptibility to infections. This is not surprising, since good intestinal bacteria play a key role in the body’s defense against pathogens.

But How Exactly Does the Microbiome Manage to Interact With the Immune System?

The answer is – by communication. Researchers have found that bacteria can influence every type of immune cell.

In a study, 53 bacterial strains were examined more closely. In a quarter of them, the scientists were able to show that they contribute to a significant increase in regulatory T-cells. These are immune cells that, among other things, target inflammatory processes in the body.

A little-known microbe called Fusobacterium Varium had the most say. The bacteria exerted the strongest influence on the cells of the immune system. The dendritic cells proved to be particularly reactive. In the same study, it was found that 38% of the bacteria, supported the proliferation of dendritic cells.

Explainer: Dendritic cells can be called sentinels of the innate immune system. They activate the immune system when pathogens have hijacked the body ship.

A Healthy Gut Diet: What Do Bacteria Have to Do With It?

Let’s be clear – there are good and bad bacteria that live in your gut. They have the great ability to influence your immune system. For this reason, it’s important to back the right horse, or gut bacteria, to put a stop to disease-causing germs.

The best way to do this is with a gut-healthy diet because just like you, your microorganisms want to be nourished.

Be careful: Your intestinal bacteria are picky and are not satisfied with everything. If the right food supply is not provided, they eat cavities in the intestinal mucosa.

Reason enough to take a closer look at foods that help digestion. But first, let’s take a look at foods that put the fear of God into your gut.

These Foods Harm Your Intestinal Mucosa

Numerous studies have shown that certain foods make things difficult for the intestinal mucosa and the desirable bacteria that live there. A gut-healthy diet also means reducing your intake of foods that have a detrimental effect on your digestive system.

You should limit the consumption of the following foods for the sake of your intestines:

1. Simple Sugars

Simple sugars hide in white flour and refined sugar. Common foods that fall into this category are chocolate and gummy bears.

Simple sugars are the favorite food of specific bacteria. They multiply excellently using them. But if you eat a lot of sweets and similar foods, you unwittingly promote the displacement of specialists who take care of complex sugars. In this way, you not only put good bacteria on the sidelines but also enable bad yeast fungi to grow.

By the way: Sweeteners also disrupt the intestinal flora.

2. Heavily Processed Sausages

Salted, smoked, or otherwise heavily processed sausages also end up on the negative list. They are capable of irritating the intestinal mucosa and triggering abdominal pain, flatulence, and cramps.

Experts, therefore, recommend eating no more than 500 g of red meat a week, however, there is nothing wrong with a piece of sausage now and then.

3. Bad Fats

A high-fat diet can have an unfavorable effect on intestinal flora. The main emphasis is on bad fats.

Therefore, our advice: Margarine, mayonnaise, and lard should only be consumed occasionally. But healthy oils such as linseed oil, olive oil, or hemp oil can enrich the diet.

Gut-flattering: These Foods Are Good for You to Eat

Source: Shutterstock

Foods That Help Digestion: Good for You to Eat

Increasingly, we read phrases like “eat like a gardener,” but what’s really behind these well-intentioned sayings? Quite a lot, as numerous studies show, your intestines are especially happy with fresh foods that score high in nutritional value.

The food should be as natural and regional as possible. That way, you can get twice the benefits. On the one hand, you get food in which the concentration of harmful substances remains within limits. On the other hand, regionality ensures that your fruit and vegetables have been able to soak up as much sun as possible, which has a positive effect on the nutrient composition.

Recommended Vegetables

  • Carrots
  • Peppers
  • Legumes
  • Potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Fennel
  • Mushrooms
  • Swiss chard
  • Pumpkin
  • Cauliflower

Recommended Fruit

  • Apple
  • Figs
  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Currants
  • Pineapple
  • Oranges
  • Nectarines
  • Pear
  • Bananas
  • Kiwi
  • Grapes

Inulin, Lactic Acid, and Pectins: the Secret Agents of Intestinal Health

There are many foods that keep your tiny gut roommates on their toes, in a positive sense, of course. With well-chosen foods, you can take in intestinal fitters like inulin, lactic acid, and pectins – we’ll show you how!

1. Inulin

This special dietary fiber has become popular with bifidobacteria and lactobacilli, which are particularly beneficial to your health. Its consumption stimulates its multiplication. This enables them to form special substances that have a beneficial effect on digestion, the intestinal mucosa, and the pH value in the intestines.

Our tip: You can take in inulin with asparagus, salsify, chicory, artichokes, or Jerusalem artichokes.

2. Lactic Acid

Have you ever heard of fermented foods? Lactic acid bacteria initiate the first digestion process. When you eat lactic acid fermented foods, they are much easier to digest. In addition, lactic acid and lactobacilli are transported to your intestines.

Our tip: You can strengthen your intestinal flora with fermented cabbage, natural yogurt, kombucha, miso, and kimchi.

3. Pectins and Beta-glucans

Pectin is prebiotic that serves as food for your good intestinal bacteria. It is found under the skin of fruits and vegetables. The best way to extract it is to rub or puree the food. Sufficient chewing also helps to activate the little helpers from apples and the like.

Oats and barley contain beta-glucans. Complex carbohydrates are also at the top of the menu for intestinal bacteria. With the help of beta-glucans, a protective gel is formed which helps to soothe the gastrointestinal system.

Our tip: With apples, oranges, and carrots you absorb pectin. Oatmeal or porridge helps your body benefit from beta-glucans.

Gut-healthy Nutrition: It's the Composition That Counts

Source: Unsplash

Gut-healthy Nutrition: It’s the Composition That Counts

In a gut-healthy diet, the mix of food components is crucial. Thus, a gut-healthy diet is composed of the main nutrients protein, fat, and carbohydrates.

Foods That Help Digestion – Healthy Gut With Protein

Protein is formed by a combination of different amino acids. They play a central role in the health of the intestines. The interesting thing is that your body starts digesting the proteins in your mouth. However, your stomach takes over the lion’s share so that the protein is available to your organism.

Digestion takes time, which is why protein-rich foods make you feel full. To keep your intestines healthy, you should rely on plant and animal proteins. Legumes, vegetables, nuts, and sour-milk products provide good protein. Fish, eggs, and meat can also be used as sources of protein.

Foods That Help Digestion – Healthy Gut With Fat

Fats are carriers of energy and flavor. However, they have a bad reputation. It is believed that they make you fat and promote numerous diseases. Here it depends – as so often in life – on the dose. Furthermore, there are fats that can increase the well-being of your body.

Generally speaking, the intestines depend on fats. They increase the time your food stays in your stomach. This pays off especially for people with flatulence because it can effectively reduce the air in the intestines.

The stars among fats are the Omega-3 fatty acids. They are good for the brain and the cardiovascular system. Omega-3 is mainly found in salmon or high-quality cooking oils such as linseed oil.

Foods That Help Digestion – Healthy Gut With Carbohydrates

You’ve already learned that simple sugars aren’t particularly beneficial. They are digested quickly and contribute to feeding bad bacteria. Dietary fiber is also a carbohydrate.

The difference: they are hardly digested. What initially sounds disadvantageous is a real advantage for your intestinal health. Dietary fiber promotes digestion and counteracts constipation.

Secret Tip: Arktibiotic Akut

There are many ways to get your gut health on track. In addition to an intestine-friendly diet, dietary supplements with bacterial cultures can be helpful.

Preparations with lactic acid bacteria are summarized under the term “probiotic”. They contain living microorganisms such as bacteria or lactic acid bacteria that also occur naturally in your intestines. The intake of probiotics is intended to stimulate colonization with these beneficial helpers.

We have made it our business to develop a product that can support you during and after your antibiotic therapy. Due to the finely tuned ingredients, our Arktibiotic Akut can also accompany you on your travels. Finally, the Saccharomyces Boulardii we added will help prevent and alleviate diarrhea.

In addition to the highly active special yeast “Saccharomyces Boulardii”, Arktibiotic Akut also contains three lactic acid-forming bacterial cultures that have been scientifically documented. With the right support, nothing more stands in the way of a healthy intestine.

Sources

  1. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/02/170216132428.htm
  2. https://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(16)31464-7
  3. https://www.nature.com/articles/nature13793
  4. https://www.aerzteblatt.de/nachrichten/60139/Suessstoffe-Studie-belegt-Stoerung-von-Darmflora-und-Glukosestoffwechsel
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28069830/
  6. https://gut.bmj.com/content/68/8/1417
  7. http://www.petrus-krankenhaus-wuppertal.de/fileadmin/user_upload/Krankenhaeuser/Petrus-Krankenhaus/Kliniken/Medizinische_Klinik_2/Darmgesundheit.pdf
  8. https://www.daab.de/ernaehrung/darm-im-fokus/bauchgesunde-ernaehrung/
Jennifer Ann Steinort

Autorin Jennifer Ann Steinort

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