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It's All In Your Gut: Why Supporting Digestion Strengthens Your Immune System

We know that what we eat affects our health. But I don't think most of us realize just how closely connected our immune system and digestive system are. If one's not working as well as it should, the other one is going to suffer. And whether we want better digestion or stronger immunity, then we have to support both of these body systems.

The Immune System In Your Gut

Your digestive tract is home to 70% of the cells making up your immune system. That means a huge percentage of your immune system lives in your gut wall and is very closely connected with your digestive health. If something is wrong in your gut, it can show up as everything from allergies, to autoimmune diseases, to mood disorders, to cancers. How important our gut is surprises many people. But when you think about everything your digestive system does it makes sense. That's where your body processes food, absorbs nutrients, and works to filter out toxins. No wonder it's essential for your health!

Grow Your Own Gut Biome

There are hundreds of species of beneficial bacteria, also called “gut flora,” living in your digestive system. They're part of your microbiome, which is the collective name for all the microorganisms living in and on your body. You need to keep your gut flora healthy to support your digestive system, which will then help keep the immune system healthy. Many people take a pill form of probiotics for this, but there's no need if you add the right foods to your diet. Fermented foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, kombucha, miso, and sourdough bread are much more powerful than supplements and I believe they're also better for you. And if you do want your probiotics packed in a “snackable” form, they're in Crucial Four's raw chocolates.

Things That Unbalance Gut Health

So how do your gut and immunity get off-balance in the first place? A lot of it has to do with eating things that aren't good for you. Processed foods, artificial ingredients, and refined sugars wreak havoc on your gut flora. Cutting back on the amount of sugar and processed foods you eat should be one of the first things you do. High stress is another thing that affects your gut. Try regulating your stress with adaptogens, meditation, exercise, and other techniques. Other things that can attack your gut bacteria are antibiotics and medications like anti-inflammatories and antacids. Use them if you have to, but make sure you're also taking steps to support your gut health with good eating.

Tips For Getting Back On Track

In addition to eating fermented foods and fixing issues that compromise digestive health, there are a few other things you can do to get your gut back on track and boost your immune system. This starts with eating a balanced diet of healthy, whole foods. Your gut needs fiber-rich foods as well as foods containing enzymes to support healthy digestion. Eating a salad every day is one way I recommend to get a good helping of fiber as well as vitamin-rich vegetables. The digestive enzymes you need are found in foods like pineapple, avocado, bee pollen, and papaya. Start cooking with spices like onions, garlic, ginger, cayenne pepper, and turmeric. They all contain elements that boost immune systems. Also, make sure you're eating plenty of vitamin-rich foods to support immunity. The best source for vitamin C is superfruit camu camu, which is in our mDefense product. Stack that with the mBreakfast blend in the morning to start your day off with a cocktail of immune-boosting vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients. With these changes to your diet, you'll be well on your way to having both a healthy immune system and a healthy digestive system.

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