Your Digestive System and Immune System Are The Coolest Dynamic Duo!
The digestive system and immune system have a close relationship—they look after one another because when one is balanced and healthy, so is the other. Our digestive tract is a primary potential entry point for pathogens that could make us sick, and it is up to our immune system to make sure those pathogens don’t take over. Our digestive tract is responsible for breaking down large particles into smaller particles so the nutrients are more easily absorbed. The digestive tract also comes in contact with bacteria and viruses that get taken down by the immune system. The immune system uses antibodies and our cells to kill the bad guys.
Digestive System and Immune System: Their Partnership In Action
The immune system has two types: innate and acquired, but the digestive system mostly works with innate immune responses. Acquired or adaptive immune system is the type we think of most often: when antibodies fight off a pathogen. Many innate immune responses, like the cells in your saliva and stomach acid that break down bacteria, work in tandem with your digestive system and don’t need to spot a pathogen to start working. (Now that’s what we call a partnership!) In order to helps out the immune system, the digestive tract has to remain healthy too: by keeping those good bacteria up and the bad bacteria down. It’s widely known that we have more bacteria cells than human cells, much more. So if our bacteria are not healthy, then we are not healthy. In order to keep our digestive system healthy, we want to make sure our gut bacteria is balanced. That means we need at least 75% of the bacteria to be good bacteria. A balanced gut helps our body break down food better. When the gut is unbalanced, our gut can start feeding bad bacteria and we can feel symptoms of poor digestion including bloating, gas, constipation as well as leaky gut or food sensitivities. American diets including processed white food, sugars and antibiotics work against our gut, leaving our bodies susceptible to yeast, mold and fungus infections. Eating the right foods can help keep both the digestive system and the immune system happy and working together!
Keep The Duo Happy: Eating for balanced gut bacteria
- Eat your greens! Whole foods, sprouted grains and leafy greens are good for digestion and contain loads of nutrients!
- Get plenty of prebiotics and probiotics! This dynamic duo helps keep your gut balanced and healthy. Rowdy Prebiotic Foods uses prebiotic yacon root as an alternate sweetener to keep your belly happy!
- Eat fermented foods, too! Foods like kimchi and sauerkraut have good bacteria like Lactobacillus bacteria that crowd out the bad bacteria.