As moms, we often don’t have the time to think about how we feel physically, besides being stressed or tired or both. Sometimes we can’t remember when we last ate, or what we ate. We definitely can’t remember if we had a chance to make a poo! It’s not about being crude, but rather realising, that in our rush to move from pillar to post, and back again, and then make sure everyone in the family is fed, watered and has gone to the toilet, we don’t even know if our own bodies are functioning optimally. And that’s scary!
80% of our immune system is located in the gut1 and if you’re not eating healthy foods, skipping meals and then binging on junk, your gut probably isn’t feeling great. Never mind what all the stress is doing to your tummy! If your gut bacteria is compromised so is your immunity1, and if you think your family can’t cope without you for five minutes, imagine what will happen if you are sick in bed for a week?
The brain-gut axis
In some cases, we have been living with some form of gut pain for years. Exposure to stress can alter the brain-gut interactions (“brain-gut axis”) and lead to the development of a broad array of gastrointestinal disorders including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), food-related gut problems, peptic ulcer and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)2.
The effect of stress on your gut can include2:
- changes in gut motility;
- changes in gastrointestinal secretion;
- “leaky gut” which is caused by an increase in the permeability of your intestine;
- a decrease in the guts’ ability to regenerate cells
- negative effects on gut flora
Basically, stress and bad eating habits can lead to a really sore tummy, but how can this be solved?
Maintaining a healthy gut
In an ideal world, you would drink eight glasses of water a day, eat all your fruit and vegetables and get eight hours of sleep a night. You would also probably need to meditate and live in a cave, without your partner and children, or having to go to work!
Sadly, this isn’t an option for the majority of us. Here are a few ways you can try and help your gut stay healthy3:
- Eating a diverse diet rich in whole foods (such as beans, legumes, nuts, and whole grains).
- Many fruits and vegetables are high in fibre. Fibre promotes the growth of beneficial gut bacteria.
- Eat fermented foods like plain yogurt which help reduce the abundance of disease-causing bacteria in the intestines.
- If you can, breastfeed for at least 6 months. Breastfeeding helps an infant develop healthy gut flora, which may help protect against certain health conditions later in life.
- Eat foods rich in polyphenols, such as dark chocolate, red wine, green tea, almonds, grape skins, blueberries, onions and broccoli.
- Take probiotics, which can be found in probiotic-rich foods, including fermented foods like kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, and yogurt.
We can probably manage to get a few of the above foods crammed into our busy lives, but the reality is possibly different, and although the above is ideal and definitely worth striving for, if you want to restore and maintain a healthy balance of gut flora to ensure optimal gut function without all the prep, you only need one Reuterina® chewable tablet, daily4.
Reuterina® Daily contains the probiotic strain L. reuteri Protectis which has an immunomodulator effect (that’s a long word for ‘helps modulate the immune system’5) and competes with ‘bad’ bacteria for place in the gut, which prevents the ‘bad’ bacteria from multiplying in the gut6,7.
Probiotics, such as Reuterina® Daily may also profoundly affect the brain-gut interactions (“microbiome-gut-brain axis”) and reduce the development of stress-induced disorders in both the upper and lower gastrointestinal tract2. In fact, in work place studies, the daily intake of Reuterina® was found to keep employees healthy and reduce short term sick-leave by 60%8. Taking Reuterina® daily has also been found to improve bowel movements in adults with chronic constipation9a-c.
This means that if you take a probiotic daily, you get to keep everyone at the office on their toes, as well as the whole family, whilst still looking after yourself!
Reuterina® Daily maintains gut health throughout adulthood4d,e, helps reduce lactose intolerance related side-effects, such as diarrhoea, nausea, stomach cramps, bloating and gas9, 10. Reuterina® Daily is lactose and milk protein free11 and available at all pharmacies.
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1. Immune Boost HCP Product sheet
2. Konturek P, Brzozowski T, Konturek SJ. Stress and the gut: pathophysiology, clinical consequences, diagnostic approach and treatment options. J Physiol Pharmacol. 2011 Dec;62(6):591-9. Accessed 11 Feb 2022: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22314561/
3. Robertson R. 9 Ways to Improve Your Gut Bacteria, Based on Science. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/improve-gut-bacteria#TOC_TITLE_HDR_2. Accessed 11 Feb 2022
4. Reuterina Daily® Approved Package Insert, July 2010.
6. Hoang TK, et al. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2018; 1;315(2):G231-G240. (Immune Boost HCP Product sheet)
7. Talarico et al. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1998; 33:674-679 (Immune Boost HCP Product sheet)
8. Tubelius P, Stan V, Zachrisson A. Increasing work-place healthiness with the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri: A randomised. double-blind placebo-controlled study. Environmental Health 2005;4:25
9. Ojetti V, Gigante G, Gabrielli M et al. The effect of oral supplementation with Lactobacillus reuteri or tilactase in lactose intolerant patients: randomized trial. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2010 Mar;14(3):163-70.
10. Mayo Clinic. Lactose Intolerance. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/lactose-intolerance/symptoms-causes/syc-20374232. Accessed 11 Feb 2022.
11. Data on File