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9 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health

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Picture this crazy scene:

Two foreign armies – some 100 trillion soldiers strong between the both of them – set up camp deep inside your body.

These tiny, microscopic soldiers are waging a war and your gastrointestinal tract is the battlefield.

There are good guys and bad guys in this conflict, and whichever army has the upper hand in this never ending struggle has an enormous impact on how well you fight off sickness and disease, your energy levels, your emotional well-being, how clearly you think and how quickly (or even if) you lose weight.

Sounds incredible, right?

The idea that an invading force could have such a powerful influence on so many important aspects of your mental and physical health sounds like something out of a science fiction movie!

But as far-fetched as it may sound, the scene I described above is real.

And it’s taking place in your body right now.

In this special report you’ll learn…

  • The amazing role your gut plays in your physical AND mental health
  • Why one popular “gut healthy food” can actually make digestive issues MUCH worse
  • How a healthy gut can actually improve your mood
  • 9 easy ways to improve your gut health
  • And more!

What’s Going On Inside Your Gut?
(Way More Than You Probably Think!)

Your gut is a far busier place – and far more important to your overall mental and physical health – than you probably realize.

Right now, as you’re reading this, there’s an estimated 100 trillion microorganisms who call your gut home.

microorganisms_rsz

As incredible as it may sound, you’re technically only 10 percent human!

A full 90 percent of your cells are nonhuman, microbial cells.

Next time you step on the bathroom scale to weigh yourself keep in mind that two to five pounds of your body weight is made up of bacteria, even though these cells are teeny-tiny – only one-tenth to one-hundredth the size of a human cell!

These microorganisms create a complex community known as the gut flora or, more accurately, the gut microbiome and they play a critical role in regulating your body’s immunity, digestion, weight, metabolism and even your emotions.

Like any bustling community, your gut microbiome has good folks and less savory types sharing the same space.

A healthy gut microbiome is all about balance: 80 percent of the bacteria are good guys and 20 percent are like the annoying neighbors who play their music too loud and have a dog that won’t quit barking.

When your gut microbiome is balanced you have energy to last you from morning till night, shrug off colds and allergies, enjoy the benefits of healthy digestion (buh-bye constipation!), and feel awesome!

But when the bad bacteria runs rampant, it can lead to all sorts of problems.

These bad bacteria can trigger painful inflammation that puts you at risk for serious health conditions like constipation, bloating, depression, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, asthma and, possibly, even obesity [1].

(We’ll have a look at what you can do to keep bad bacteria in its place in just a moment …)

Your gut microbiome is amazing, but it wasn’t until very recently that scientists understood much about it.

In 2012, 200 scientists at 80 institutions finished sequencing the genetic material extracted from the microbiomes of nearly 250 healthy adults [2].

What they discovered was that each individual’s microbiome was different than the next person’s – like an internal fingerprint. And many of the activities performed by the bacteria in the microbiome were so similar to those of an organ, scientists dubbed the term “forgotten organ” to describe the microbiome [3].

Let’s take a look at just three of the ways your microbiome influences your health.

The Weird and Wonderful Ways
Your Gut Microbiome Affects Your Health

bacteria

The 100 trillion microorganisms that make up your gut microbiome influence your health in some truly amazing ways. For example, scientists now know that 60 to 70 percent of your immune system is found in your gut!

Your gut-associated lymphoid tissue, or GALT for short, is a one cell thick membrane that lines your gut wall.

And while your GALT may be super thin it’s also super important – without it your body would stand little chance against harmful bacteria. That’s because your GALT is loaded with B cells and T cells that trigger your immune response, neutralizing naughty bacteria and preventing them from passing through your gut wall – and into your body where they can make you seriously sick.

Another way your gut microbiome supports your health is through the production of serotonin.

Serotonin, sometimes called the “happy hormone”, is a neurotransmitter that regulates sleep, anxiety, depression and mood. And guess where the lion’s share of your serotonin is produced? You got it! It’s actually produced in your gut, not your brain.

So when you’re feeling blue it could have less to do with your brain, and much more to do with your belly!

Finally, let’s talk about the brain in your belly. It may sound weird, but you actually have two brains.

The connection between your belly and your brain is so strong that scientists frequently refer to the gut as the body’s “second brain”.

And while your gut obviously isn’t responsible for any of your higher cognitive functions (you can’t expect it to write a poem or prepare your taxes) it can have a profound impact on your emotional state as well as the clarity of your thinking.

Pretty impressive, right?

Your gut microbiome plays a role in how well your body fights off harmful bacteria, your emotional well-being and even how clearly you think!

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“The Insider’s Guide to Gut Health”
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And while more research is needed, scientists believe the gut microbiome may play a major role in whether or not a person develops obesity [4].

Because your gut microbiome is so important in determining the way you look and feel, you probably want to do everything you can to support a healthy gut microbiome, right? Well you’re in luck!
In just a few seconds I’m going to share nine things you can do today to improve your gut health.

But first, let’s take a look at how some common aspects of our modern lifestyle are anything but good for the health of your gut microbiome.

Modern Life Is Wreaking Havoc On Your Gut Microbiome

All disease begins in the gut. – Hippocrates

Hippocrates said that over 2,000 years ago, and modern science is proving those words to be true.

As you’ve seen over the last few paragraphs, your gut microbiome plays a crucial role in your overall mental and physical health. And if the bad bacteria in your gut is pushing the good bacteria around, you can be certain your health will suffer for it.

Sadly, several common aspects of our modern lifestyle have been shown to wreak havoc on your gut microbiome:

      • Over-the-counter NSAIDs like Advil and ibuprofen
      • Antibiotics [5]
      • Diets high in refined sugars and carbohydrates
      • Diets low in fermentable fibers
      • Chronic stress and fatigue
      • Chronic illness

That’s the bad news.

The good news is that you have far more control over the health of your gut microbiome than you probably realize.

After all, you can control factors like diet and stress that directly impact the health of your gut microbiome.

This is exciting!

Because even if you’re not as healthy as you’d like to be right now, you can make lifestyle choices that will directly lead to a healthier gut microbiome, and will quickly and dramatically influence the way you look and feel.

You’ve seen how important your gut microbiome health is to your overall well-being … and YOU have the power to do something about keeping it in tip top shape.

Here are nine things you can do, today, to support a healthier gut microbiome so you can enjoy more of the radiant health and abundant energy you deserve!

9 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health

1. Eat probiotics-rich foods.

Probiotics_rich_foods_rsz

You can literally eat your way to a healthier gut microbiome by including yummy fermented whole foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, miso and kefir on your menu.

These plant-based probiotics-rich foods supercharge your belly’s good bacteria and give them the fuel they need to fight the good fight against bad bacteria.

You’ll want to steer clear of vinegar-based and/or pasteurized probiotics-rich foods as these will actually kill the good bacteria in your gut microbiome.

2. Skip the yogurt.

Yogurt_rsz

If you think of yogurt as a good source of probiotics, you’re not the only one.

After all, multi-billion dollar food companies with mega bucks to spend on marketing have been trumpeting their yogurts as a tasty way to get your daily probiotics fix for years.

Here’s the truth: Most of the popular yogurt brands available at your local grocery store are LOADED with added sugars, essentially neutralizing any benefit you might receive from the probiotics by pumping your gut full of sugar the bad bacteria need to thrive.

If you want to enjoy yogurt as a healthier snack, opt for plain Greek yogurt.

3. Load your plate with tasty plant-based PREbiotic foods.

Prebiotic_foods_rsz

Prebiotics (not to be confused with probiotics) are non-digestible food ingredients that promote the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut microbiome.

Think of prebiotics as the fuel your healthy bacteria need to kick serious bad bacteria booty.

Luckily, some of the richest sources of prebiotics also happen to be incredibly delicious!

These include plant-based foods like Jerusalem artichokes, bananas, polenta, broccoli and other cruciferous veggies (like kale, cabbage, and cauliflower), blueberries and beans. So next time you head to the grocery store make sure you’ve got plenty of these foods on your shopping list.

Give your good bacteria the fuel they need to fight the good fight!

4. Kick your soda habit.

Soda_rsz

Soda is, to put it bluntly, one of the worst things you can do to your body.

If you order a medium soda next time you dine out at your favorite restaurant, you can expect to consume an alarming 44 grams of sugar – and that’s BEFORE you ask for a refill.

The American Heart Association recommends women consume no more than 90 grams of added sugar per day (and men no more than 135 grams per day).

Not only does sugar cause bad bacteria to multiply and thrive in your gut microbiome, but excessive sugar consumption has been linked to obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, fatty liver disease, low libido, cancer, hormonal imbalances and many other serious health problems.

5. Drink plenty of water.

Water_rsz

Water is essential to flush bacteria and waste out of your digestive system, as well as to help prevent constipation and bloating.

For a healthy gut microbiome, staying hydrated is a must.

So, how much water should you drink every day? As a general rule you want to drink half of your body weight in fluid ounces of water daily. That means if you weigh 140 pounds you’d drink 70 ounces of water throughout the day – the equivalent of about nine 8-ounce glasses of water.

New Special Report!

“The Insider’s Guide to Gut Health”
Claim Your FREE Copy Now!

6. Relax

Relax_rsz

Our modern lives are more fast-paced and stressful than ever.

When you experience chronic stress your adrenal glands flood your body with the stress hormone cortisol which basically slams the brakes on your digestion. Not good if you’re trying to promote a healthy gut microbiome!

There are all sorts of effective relaxation techniques from yoga to deep breathing to an afternoon of retail therapy. An unusual, but effective, way to manage stress could be as simple as sniffing a scented candle.

In a recent study reported in the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine, women who sniffed air infused with orange essential oil for only 90 seconds instantly had less activity buzzing in their prefrontal cortex, the part of brain where stress is recognized and processed. These ladies literally sniffed away their stress in just a minute and a half!

7. Lay off the snacks and fast food.

Fast_foods_rsz

Sugar-soaked, refined foods like cookies, chips, donuts, and anything that’s served to you in a paper bag are like giving the bad bacteria in your gut a 24-hour pass to an all-you-can-eat buffet – and the more these bad bugs eat the more the faster they multiply and run rampant in your but microbiome.

Go easy on the snacks and junk food and chow down on healthy probiotics-rich foods like the ones mentioned above instead.

8. Get some fresh air.

Get_fresh_air_rsz

For the vast majority of our history, we humans spent a good deal of our time outdoors. These days? Not so much.

Between the hours we spend cooped up in our homes, offices and vehicles a recent National Activity Survey found that most of us spend a full 90 percent of our lives indoors!

Simply opening a window to let in some fresh air can improve the health and diversity of the microbes floating around your home or office, which can lead in turn to a healthier gut microbiome. [6]

9. Take a high-quality probiotic supplement.

A high-quality daily probiotic supplement can give your good bacteria a serious boost, keep the bad bacteria in check, boost your immune system, aid digestion, and even make it easier for you to lose belly fat.

Now It’s Your Turn

Unfortunately, as you read in this article, our modern lifestyle is full of choices that harm our gut microbiome… and most people have no idea that an unhealthy gut microbiome could be contributing to their persistent health problems.

I hope what you’ve learned here makes it easier for you to make lifestyle choices that promote the ongoing good health of your gut microbiome.

Now I have a small favor to ask:

If you found this article useful, would you please share it with a friend or loved one by clicking one of the social share icons (Facebook, Google+, etc.) below? I would really appreciate it!

Your turn: Have you struggled with gas, bloating, heartburn, constipation or other symptoms of an unhealthy gut? What steps are you taking to improve your digestive health?

22 Comments

  • Valerie Greene says:

    Thank you! THIS IS A VERY interesting, helpful, article ! I just shared this on facebook! I had no idea that the gut in our body was so important!
    Sincerely,
    Valerie Greene

  • Glenda A Lovett says:

    Hi Dr Charles I read you article on gut health and I really am having these problems right now, Why don’t the Dr tell us these things, they check us and keep it to themselves, I don’t know what to ask but ,I do know my symptoms and they fit exactly what you are revealing, I thank you much, you have been a blessing to me hollallua, you said if I eat the right foods I can change this Iam so glad that it can be reversed, thank you again, I don’t get this from the Dr I see when I see my Dr it’s like no hope from them or a death sentence, I thank you for hope and the truth that sets me free!!!

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hi Glenda, never ever give up hope, and don’t forget there are plenty of other doctors out there so you can get a second opinion!

  • Devon says:

    Thank you Doc!

  • Wanda Hubbard says:

    I have been taking the Super Probiotics for awhile now and at lst with only 4 drops twice a day I had wonderful results for IBS or gut problems, but now I am up to 6 drops twice a day and i get some help but not nearly as much as at lst and the directions state that that is the maximum dosage. At lst it calms things down but not even an hour after one movement it is time for another and it is urgent and cannot be stopped.

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hi Wanda, sounds like you have a severe case of IBS.

      Remember that this will not be an overnight fix for you and to get long lasting results remember that it takes time to heal. 2 months may not be enough for you. If it were my mother, I would tell her to stay on the supplement for a year. Allow it to get in your system for a long period so that your cells can use it as building blocks to build healthy new cells.

      Also IBS is an inflammatory condition so your diet will be a big deal. Stop eating any type of wheat and dairy because these are inflammatory foods.
      Start taking turmeric supplements as well. Livlean has a good dose of turmeric in it or there are plenty others out there.
      Also be sure to take a great fish oil because that also helps with inflammation.
      Don’t give up Wanda. Just remember that healing takes time and sometimes you may feel worse before you feel better. This is known as a herxheimer reaction. Keep us posted!

  • B A Groves says:

    Excellent information! Thanks for sharing the “specifics” toward a healthier body. I like the idea of knowing what to put in your “grocery” shopping cart instead of the skeptcism associated with unnecessary (sometimes) purchases from “online” shopping carts. Thank you for being straight forward!!

  • Sheryl Draschil says:

    Hello,
    I suffer from chronic nausea and I try all kind of gut supplements which seems to cause diarrhea and doesn’t do much for my nausea and pain. I’ve had 18″ of my colon removed due to abnormal twisting. I take probiotics but am wondering if I’m taking the wrong stuff. What would you suggest? I have been to over six different GI docs and they can’t find anything wrong with me so I’m just given another prescription. Some even tell me they can’t do anything for me -Good bye. I’m so tired all the time, don’t eat very well because of the nausea. After reading your article I will drink more water, order that probiotic you listed and try to control my stress level, watch what I eat and add the supplements you suggested. Do you any more information that would be of benefit to. I jus want to feel good. Thank you. Sheryl

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hi Sheryl, first, I would get a second opinion from other types of doctors/health care practitioners that aren’t medical especially if you’ve been to 6 MD’s and they haven’t solved the problem.Try chiropractors who have studied applied kinesoliogy, SOT, or some type of visceral manipulation as well. I’d also look at acupuncturists and NMD’s. Please take our probiotic for a minimum of 4 months. You have to give the probiotic time. Have you tried taking activated charcoal? Our product Tox-Adsorb is a very potent activated charcoal that works wonders with nausea. If they removed that much of your colon, chances are you have some scar tissue build up in there which could be contributing to the nausea. This is where someone who practices visceral manipulation could help out. Anyway, those are just some thoughts off the top of my head. I hope you found it helpful!

  • ZM says:

    Hi doc, I’m about to start your LivLean Formula #1 and pray that it works. Since giving birth to my daughter, my “slow digestive system” as I was told by my Dr, seems to have been compounded by other food aversions, constant fatigue to the point where I sit in meetings at work and have to hold my head up with my hand, swollen lymph nodes, constant bloating, flopping white cell levels… did I mention I’m a soccer player. When I play soccer now, by near the end of the first half I feel like I’ve been playing for half a day and I’m used to being able to play 2 full games straight, running the entire field; as you can imagine quite depressing. Prior to my pregnancy, I had a 6 pack, body fat of ~12%, had the same weight for approx. 12 years it was almost comical with my annual physical that I stayed so consistent… now I’m consistent but stuck at 14lbs heavier and it’s all body fat. I didn’t gain much weight while pregnant (barely looked pregnant) and was able to wear the same clothes until 7 mos! Approx 10 yrs before my pregnancy, I started having chicken (then all poultry), raw almonds and MSG intolerances where I would be crippled with ripping stomach pain anytime I accidently consumed chicken (but I could eat eggs). During my pregnancy, I began to get mouth rashes, migraines etc. from all sorts of food – dairy, soy, red meat… after my pregnancy I was back to my pre-state (my only protein sources were fish and soy) but my daughter has had a terrible time with ripping pain after every meal which 7 yrs later (she’s 7 year old!!), repeated hospital visits, specialists, different Dr’s, enduring every test they could throw at her… and finally found a natural path and a holistic practitioner that were able to diagnosis her with Gluten, Dairy and some other food intolerances! Back to me, after my pregnancy, I dropped ~8lbs but I’ve never lost the small pouch of 2 inches of fat surrounding my belly button-doesn’t matter what I try and with my crappy energy it’s really hard to give anything 100%. Now, I am gaining more fat on my thighs (so far only there), my stomach still looks exactly the same… Looking for a solution to the way I feel and my body composition, I started to use my daughter’s Holistic practitioner and took a blood food-intolerance test after being fed up with my MD and a blood specialist who couldn’t explain why my white blood cell counts keep fluctuating and hovering around low – coinciding with my energy level drops… Results: My Holistic Practitioner notes my B12 extremely low, I have trouble digesting sugars, suggested I start taking Selenium, B12, probiotics, milk-thistle, Omegas…, even noted she considers me pre-diabetic!!! Blood tests Results: I’m intolerant to -Red meat, wheat, rye and oats, sugar white fish, peanuts, and lots more… sound familiar (funny enough chicken didn’t show up so I went back to trying it and so far so good-white meat only though). I started taking the suggested supplements, trying to avoid most of my intolerances and I definitely feel an improvement but still no body composition changes. I’ve always eaten really well-practically never junk food or processed foods including fast food restaurants so I really don’t have much flexibility and very frustrated after the years of trying to find my own solutions. Today I accidently found your website, your LivLean formula and just placed my order… my journey to find my old self continues. I pray this is the solution I’ve been searching for!!!! Then my daughter’s stomach is my next journey… what do you do for small children!! BTW, I purchased 6 months worth of the LivLean

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hello! Wow, sounds like you’ve been yanked around a bit. I’d say you probably have some auto-immune issues going and what these docs are telling you is great, but it doesn’t get to the root cause of WHY you have these issues. Why do you have trouble digesting sugars, why is your B12 low, or why you are intolerant to these certain foods? Start asking these simple questions: 1. What am I toxic (Have too much of) and 2. What am I deficient in (Have too little of) Almost all health issues stem from these problems. Toxicity and deficiency in something. And once you find out these things, you should ask WHY I am toxic or deficient. Your body has basically turned against you and it sounds like your daughter is facing similar issues. Since I don’t know your history besides what you gave me here, I’ll tell you what I’d do if it were me.
      1. Get house thoroughly checked for mold
      2. Get heavy metal testing done on you and your daughter. ESPECIALLY if you were eating alot of fish. Fish should never be your primary food source because of all the mercury and heavy metals in them.
      3. Check your stress levels. – When these are high, it can destroy your health and no matter what you do, your body won’t lose weight.
      4. Ditch your other probiotics and start taking ours. Your daughter can take it also. Perfect Biotics is a strong, stable probiotic. With this, stay on for at least 6 months.
      5. You are on the right track and are doing right things. Keep it up and don’t stop trying!! I’m proud of how far you’ve come. It is an uphill battle but you are doing great. Please keep me posted on your findings and feel free to reach out to us if you need anything!!

  • Iris says:

    I had breast cancer and the doctor prescribed tamoxifen on Monday 9/21/16 and I had order the Loveland formula I have read I can not take this supplement. How can I return it.

  • Pat Yargo says:

    Hello,Pat here. I’ve been having problems, first looking weight and vomiting anything I eat. Rather it is a small bowl of cereal or an egg,within thirty min or an hour I vomit. Just simply lean over,without pressure & vomit. They put me on Pantoprazole 40mg. It calms my stomach,but doesn’t heal it. If I miss a couple or run out before I get refills, it starts all over again. I have received your perfect biotic,but need to know if it will affect my blood pressure meds or cholesterol meds? I’m 62 ,5ft and weigh around 155 lbs.

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hi Pat, it shouldn’t affect your BP or Cholesterol meds but as always check with your doctor. I would advise to stay on this for at least 4 months to allow the probiotic to fully take effect. I’d also recommend to stop eating any dairy or wheat for a month and see if things change. Keep me posted, please.

  • Shari Weyer says:

    I have worked with a Natural path in the past for leaky gut, taken probiotics and off dairy and wheat with good results. I have been using spelt products instead of wheat, but haven’t been following the dietary restrictions as well as I should. Over the past year, my weight has been creeping up and increased abdominal issues of constipation, cramping, bloating and back pain. I have been taking LivLean formula for 3 months. I haven’t had weight loss yet, but I have been trying to eliminate dairy and wheat. When I do have something with dairy or wheat, my symptoms feel much more intensified. I feel so frustrated when I eat the wrong foods and I wonder if the LivLean is helping? I just order the probiotics. Any suggestions for pain relief when I am having abdominal cramps and bloating? Any suggestions for staying on wheat and dairy free diets? I watched the Betrayal series and will focus on gluten free. I also plan to look for a functional medicine MD in my area.

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Hi Shari, sounds like you definitely have some other things going on which will keep you from getting the best results from Livlean. Remember that the body is very complex and I don’t tout Livlean as a miracle pill. It is building blocks that help to regenerate your liver and also gives it protection. The goal is to get your liver up and functioning better so that your metabolism skyrockets. So, when you keep eating inflammatory foods like Wheat and Dairy that also are laced with chemicals, it makes it hard on your liver. Think… Garbage in = Garbage out. Adding Perfect Biotics is a HUGE step to help with leaky gut and digestion. As for abdominal cramps and bloating, get a good digestive enzyme such as absorb max from biotrust. AND get activated charcoal:http://www.perfectorigins.com/tox-adsorb/

  • Diana says:

    Hello, Diana here. I’ve watched your videos and decided to order a month supply of your Livelean formula 1. I am keeping up with all the comments and emails so I’m really excited to try it.

    • Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. Dr. Charles Livingston D.C. says:

      Thanks Diana! I love this formula and use it myself. I can’t wait for you to try it!

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