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A powerful connection: how water kefir can help to support the health of our gut microbiome

A powerful connection: how water kefir can help to support the health of our gut microbiome

A powerful connection: how water kefir can help to support the health of our gut microbiome by Sarah Nash, Registered Nutritional Therapist

Have you ever come across the old Hippocrates quote 'All disease begins in the gut'?

Well, he had a point. The gut microbiome, or the collection of roughly 100 trillion bacteria, fungi and viruses that have set up home in our gut, plays a crucial role in our overall health and wellbeing.

A few fun facts about the gut microbiome

- It weighs approximately 2 kg, or as much as the human brain. Wait. What!?

- It contains roughly 5000 different species of bacteria, all of them with different roles to play. Some of these bacteria are beneficial, while others are pathogenic, or less beneficial – the keyword here is balance!

- The microbiome is located within the small and large intestine, but not in our stomach which is too acidic for the microbes to survive

- It supports our immune system, 70-80% of which is located in our gut. A balanced and healthy gut microbiome supports not only the development of immune cells, but also the refinement of immune responses

- The composition of your gut microbiome is partly affected by how you were born (ie vaginally or via caesarean section) as well as whether you were breast fed or formula fed

Suffice to say, there are plenty of reasons why we should be paying extra close attention to the health and wellbeing of the little bugs that live in our gut. Sadly, we live in a world that presents lots of challenges for our gut microbiome – processed foods, stress, antibiotics, sedentary lifestyles and environmental toxins,  to name but a few, can disrupt the delicate balance within our gut.

Water kefir to the rescue

So before we dive into how water kefir can be a great way to nurture your gut microbiome health, let’s take a closer look at what exactly water kefir is.

In a nutshell, water kefir is a fermented drink renowned for its probiotic properties, meaning that it contains a collection of beneficial live bacteria. And it is these beneficial bacteria that can help to support our gut microbiome and encourage it to flourish and thrive.

The power of probiotics

So how exactly can the priobiotics in water kefir help to support our gut health? Here are the top 3 ways in which regular consumption of water kefir can contribute to better gut health:

Encouraging microbial balance

Water kefir contains a range of different probiotic strains, including Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, as well as beneficial yeasts. These probiotics can help to support gut health by populating our gastrointestinal tract, thereby crowding out any harmful pathogens and encouraging microbial balance.

Supporting digestive health

The probiotics in water kefir play a critical role in aiding the breakdown of foods we eat, thereby helping to improve our digestive health and reduce digestive discomfort such as bloating, gas, and constipation.

Regulating immune system function

I already mentioned previously that a significant percentage of our immune system resides in the gut, making a balanced microbiome crucial for a healthy immune function. Through encouraging a healthy balance of gut bacteria, the probiotics in water kefir can help to regulate immune responses, reduce inflammation and fend off illness.

Final thoughts

When it comes to looking after the health of our gut microbiome, fermented drinks such as Agua de Madre’s delicious water kefir can be a great addition to your diet. Not only can the probiotic strains within water kefir encourage beneficial bacteria to thrive, but they can also help to support our overall digestive and immune health, thereby laying the foundation for overall health and wellbeing.

With thanks to Sarah https://www.sarahnash.co.uk/

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