These last couple years have been such a strange period of time. But in many ways it has been a useful and interesting time too. We’ve all had the “pause” button pressed, and that’s helped us take time to reevaluate some of our priorities and what’s important to us.
One thing we all need to make a priority is improving the gut microbiome, which in turn strengthens the body’s immune system. So many people around the globe have struggled with this current virus because they have issues with “leaky gut.”
Leaky gut and the immune system
Leaky gut is the result of some level of dysbiosis in the intestinal flora. The helpful “bugs” are not thriving and the intestinal lining has been damaged. Leaky gut shows up as chronic inflammation of all kinds — autoimmune disease, depression, brain fog, bloating, weight gain, headaches, asthma, skin conditions, and other nonspecific chronic conditions. Leaky gut and inflammation also can play a role in cancer, lupus, heart disease, and other very serious maladies.
The health of our gut is relevant today more than ever before. We actually have less exposure to helpful microbes these days because our commercial food growing practices have all but eliminated them with chemicals and pesticides, and we have even more exposure to way too many other toxins that are harming our microbiome. This — along with increased stress, too much alcohol, sugar, glyphosates, and lack of good sleep — is why we as a population are losing our immune fighting abilities. Did you know that 70% of your immunity is in your gut? We have to take this seriously if we are going to get past this pandemic.
One thing I know is that despite how smart a woman is, when she gets stressed she often puts herself last. Comfort food is one thing that can start to creep into our lives as a coping strategy. This usually means more flour, sugar, fat, and salt, and too much wine or caffeine.
Many of us have been eating foods that damage the gut microbiome and not eating enough foods with fiber or drinking enough pure, clean water. Regular and normal daily bowel movements may not be up to par either. It’s time to make your health a priority!
Steps to a healthier gut and stronger immune system
- Avoid processed food, fried foods, and saturated animal fat.
- Eat more fiber and drink plenty of clean water. (Do not drink out of plastic. In fact, avoid plastic for any food storage.)
- Buy organic produce whenever possible, and eat a variety of different vegetables and fruits daily.
- Eat fermented foods such as kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, and other raw, live pickled vegetables.
- Back off from too much animal protein of all kinds but especially excess dairy, fish, and red meat. If you do eat meat, buy grass fed organic. (BTW fish now has too many heavy metals even if wild caught, but especially true of farmed fish.)
- Eat non-GMO whole grains and beans. (Start with a small amount of beans at first if you are not used to eating them.)
- Take a full spectrum probiotic, ideally prescribed by your health practitioner, and find out if you need other supplements such as magnesium, D-3, omega-3s, and zinc. (Most people are deficient.)
- Incorporate more herbs and alliums into your diet. Eat plenty of garlic, onions, ginger, turmeric, and all the others you enjoy.
- Avoid alcohol and added sugar as much as you possibly can.
- Reduce added toxin exposure by avoiding bad quality air and contaminated water. Get air and water filters for your home. Carry a stainless steel or glass water bottle that you can refill.
- Read labels and choose products that don’t have harmful chemicals in them for cosmetics, toiletries, and cleaning and household products.
- Manage stress (breathing exercise, meditation, move your body), improve sleep, and spend more time outdoors.
- Move every day at least 30 minutes. Walking is great.
- Limit your exposure to EMFs (electromagnetic frequency) and too much blue light from screens.
I know this may seem like a lot, but honestly, it is necessary and important if you want a healthy gut and thus a strong immune system. Start with one change and then move to the next. Do the easy things first.
The beginning of the year is a “fresh start” and it may be a helpful time to make these kinds of changes now. Maintaining them will require some support and some new strategies. This is a topic to explore for another time. For now, just get started!
To Your Gorgeous Good Health,
If you are interested in making positive changes this coming year, consider one of my Goddess Wisdom Experience sessions. I’ve opened up 4 spots for a limited time. It’s a brilliant way to start the new year!
This is a roll-up-your-sleeves, 90 min deep dive into all parts of your LIFE and any old patterns that are preventing you from having what you want. It’s perfect to set you on the right path before the start of a new year.
Grounded with new information, you’ll be able to weave together a better PLAN, find support, and reveal your best allies so you don’t have to do everything yourself.
This includes an intuitive oracle card reading with me that will help you gain CLARITY and get crystal clear on what’s next.