Doctor Lee rubbed his tummy and smiled wryly. "I have a gut feeling."
Yet he wasn't referring to the intuitive kind of ‘gut feeling’. Instead, Doctor Lee was hinting at the new wave of research into gut health.
“Tummy troubles are unfortunately common,” he explained. “Gas, bloating, constipation and irregular bowel movements are all symptoms of an unhealthy digestive system.”
According to new research the trillions of bacteria in the body’s intestines do more than just digest and process food. They help regulate mood, maintain a healthy weight, reduce inflammation and fend off diseases like diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.
“The trick is to keep the good gut bacteria alive,” said Doctor Lee. “I tell my patients to think of them as exotic pets that need special food.”
A healthy gut diet includes a daily intake of probiotics (like those found in naturally fermented foods such as yoghurt, kim chi, sauerkraut and kefir), low carbohydrate food, low to no sugar food, high fibre, adequate water and less stress.
Yet Doctor Lee was quick to caution that anyone with persistent gut problems should consult their doctor.