In recent years, scientists have discovered that the gut plays an integral role in our overall health and well-being. The trillions of bacteria, fungi, viruses and microbes that make up the gut microbiome communicate with the rest of the body, and a more diverse microbiome—with a large population of beneficial microbes—is associated with better long-term health .
Why is good gut health important?
Landmark 15 study from King’s College London found a group of 15 Specific gut microbes are associated with a lower risk of common diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. Professor Tim Spector, epidemiologist and scientific co-founder of Zoe, said: “When you eat, you’re not only nourishing your body, you’re nourishing the trillions of microbes that live in your gut.” Your personal gut Dow Microbiology through its app-based program) and people who spearhead research.
From immunity to mental health, everything starts in the gut. Vogue spoke to medical scientist and public health nutritionist Dr. Federica Amati, who is also Zoe’s science communications strategist, to learn about key signs and Symptoms to watch out for—and how to deal with them.
7 Signs of an Unhealthy Gut
1. Constipation or Diarrhea
“When it comes to gut health, the first thing to know is whether you have constipation or diarrhea, as both conditions are symptoms of a problem,” he says Dr. Marty. These symptoms may indicate a problem with the gut’s processing of food or a microbial imbalance. It is important to see your GP if you have symptoms for more than 7 days or if the frequency of your bowel movements changes and affects your daily life.
Bloating is often closely associated with constipation or diarrhea, but in some cases it can be more pronounced, so it’s a symptom to look out for.
“If you get to the point where you fart a lot and it’s really uncomfortable or painful, that’s another sign that something may be wrong with your gut health,” Dr. Amati Say.
4. Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is also a sign that something you’re eating isn’t right for you (or your gut). It’s also worth noting that the acid blockers that many people take to treat acid reflux are not good for your gut microbiome and can start a vicious cycle.
5. Nutrient Deficiency
“A lack of a vitamin or nutrient may indicate that you’re not eating properly, or that you’re having problems absorbing nutrients from food,” says Dr. Amati. “One of the reasons most people find out they have celiac disease [an allergy to gluten] is because they are further tested for nutritional deficiencies.”
6. Poor Mental Health
Whether it’s depression, anxiety, or another mental health condition, your diet (and gut health) has everything to do with your mood, says Dr. Amati. Additionally, feelings of fatigue or low energy could be signs of poor gut health.
7. Skin problems
Due to the gut-skin axis, skin diseases such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis are all closely related to the gut. For example, a recent 2022 study found that eating dietary fiber can help prevent and/or treat skin allergies.
If you suffer from symptoms of poor gut health, do this
If you suffer from any of the above for a long time symptoms, it is important to see your GP.
PhD. Amati also recommends paying more attention to what you eat and how it affects your daily function. Keeping a food diary is a really good way to start analyzing your intake, whether it’s taking notes in a book or documenting it with photos on your phone — whichever is easiest. “Just make sure you document it, along with how you felt that day,” she says. “Try keeping a diary for at least a week—it usually reveals a lot about what could have happened.” It’s also a great way to let your doctor or nutritionist know if and when you choose to visit them—the more information they have, the more The more effective it is in treating you (or referring you to someone who can).