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What is the gut?

What is the gut?
24 September 2021
3-minute read

Your gut is one of the most important organs in your body. If you want to make a direct impact on your overall well being, improving your gut health with exercise, a balanced diet and certain live bacterial supplements  could be much more impactful than you think. Let’s get down to the basics - what is the gut and why does it matter?

What is the gut?

A common mistake that many people make is confusing the gut with the stomach. When we talk about the gut, we are actually referring to your intestines. Made up of both the long and small intestines, this long tube helps to digest your food as well as move waste out of your body. The health of your gut is therefore crucial for easy and comfortable digestion. In fact, when people refer to ‘stomach pains’, they are often experiencing pain in the gut instead. So - what makes your gut tick?

With over 40 trillion bacterial cells in the average body (compared to 30 trillion human cells), microbes are essential for the smooth running of your body. We refer to this diverse bacterial ecosystem as the microbiome. Like a rainforest or coral reef, your gut contains the majority of microbes in your body and relies heavily on a flourishing microbiome to be successful. The gut should be teeming with hundreds of different species of bacteria, constantly interacting with each other and your body whilst simultaneously helping the digestion process. The more diverse your gut microbiome is, the healthier your gut will be.

Why do I need to maintain my gut health?

In recent years, studies have shown that the gut has a much bigger part to play in your body than simply digesting food. Your gut is responsible for a number of bodily processes, including supporting the immune system, blood sugar levels and even mental health. With 70% of your immune cells located in the gut, maintaining a healthy microbiome is important for your immune system. The microbes in your gut even have a part to play in regulating your cholesterol and blood sugar levels, keeping your blood healthy. Your gut is also linked up to the brain using a complicated network of nerves called the peripheral nervous system. According to various studies, this means that gut health could correlate to your mental health.

How to improve gut health

There are a variety of ways to optimise the health of your gut. Clearly, a well-balanced diet high in fibre will provide your microbiome with enough nutrients to maintain diversity. Exercise can also significantly improve gut problems, encouraging muscles to continue working and improving symptoms of gas and bloating. One recent study found that two sessions of yoga over a 12 week period can have a positive impact on your gut health. Additionally, if you’re feeling stressed or anxious, practising mindfulness can significantly reduce symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). 

Alongside exercise, diet and mindfulness, taking proven probiotics is another way to improve gut problems and get your gut health flourishing. LP299v™, a live bacterial supplement part of Sons’ Gut Health Supplements, is one of the most well-studied bacterial supplements in the world. Studies show that LP299v works by binding tightly to the cells lining the gut, which in turn boosts the production of mucus proteins that fortify the gut wall and improves digestive symptoms. 

As the home of the immune system and a flourishing microbiome, the gut is a vital part of any well-functioning, healthy body. Whether you’re suffering from IBS or want to give your gut a boost, our Gut Health Supplements are a scientifically-proven way to improve gut health.

All of our blog articles are reviewed by our Medical Director before publication.