You’ve heard me talk about gut health and why it’s so important…
But did you know that certain strains of probiotics can actually target the symptoms you’re dealing with on a daily basis? Like constipation and diarrhea. It’s true.
I am going to get into all of that but make sure you watch the video too because we have a special guest today – Rushawn Orth, one of our amazing Fitlife Certified Coaches! She was in town visiting us from Texas and I wanted to bring her on to tell you a little about her story. She’s come so far and we’re so proud of her.
Healing her gut was one of the first things she did in her own personal transformation and it’s something we believe in tremendously at Fitlife.
She is now down 50 pounds and the swelling in her knee is gone! Plus, her energy is through the roof and she’s living life on her terms again!
What an amazing success story!
Your gut is your “second brain,” after all and is home to 70-80% of your immune system and 95% of your serotonin (that “happy” chemical). It has a huge job so keeping it working for you is crucial to your health.
Interestingly enough, different strains play different roles. Here are some studies relating certain strains to common digestive ailments (all 4 of these examples are in our probiotic):
When it comes to choosing a probiotic, you always want to be sure they contain strains from Bacterium and Lactobacillus.
Our Biotic Balance is a multi-strain formula – 10 strains to be exact.
We made it this way because we knew through our research that certain strains play a role in the function of gut health.
For example, some research suggests L. acidophilus may be effective when used to prevent traveler’s diarrhea (caused by eating contaminated food).
Other studies show that taking probiotics regularly may help prevent gastrointestinal infections in adults. In fact, research shows that taking L. acidophilus along with other probiotic strains may enhance immune function and improve overall health. One study found that a 2-strain probiotic, including L. acidophilus, twice a day for 3 months reduced symptoms of the common cold and school absenteeism in school children.
Bifidobacterium lactis is a very well researched probiotic strain, which has repeatedly demonstrated effectiveness at reducing constipation.
Taking a probiotic supplement helps to keep the bad bacteria in your gut balanced so it doesn’t run rampant, soaring to harmful levels (you actually need some “bad” bacteria). And this reduces your chances of suffering from constipation.
Probiotics are well researched for helping your overall digestion, but as I mentioned, certain strains have been shown to specifically help with constipation. The probiotic strain Bifidobacterium lactis, for example, converts prebiotic fibers into short chain fatty acids, which lubricate your gut and naturally stimulate peristalsis.
Skip The Laxatives, Use Probiotics Instead
A lot of people reach for laxatives when things aren’t ‘moving’ efficiently. The problem with this is that the digestive system can actually become reliant on these causing ‘lazy gut’ or a dependency. One of the main benefits that probiotics have over laxatives is that they don’t cause ‘lazy’ gut, nor do they lead to dehydration, which means you can take them on an ongoing basis.
L. acidophilus and Bifidobacterium lactis are both in our probiotic.
How To Get Things Movin’ Daily
We are a complex system. And despite being categorized in pieces, we are a WHOLE entity.
Altogether, the members of the human body’s microbial ecosystem make up anywhere from two to six pounds of a 200-pound adult’s total body weight, according to estimates from the Human Microbiome Project.
Ensuring we are populating the needs of all parts is important for all pieces to be able to work together.
That’s what keeps you healthy and functioning.
So what exactly does a healthy poop look like?
Should your poop float or sink?
How should it smell?
What about color and shape?
My good friend, Dr. Lo and I talk all about that in this video, so be sure to check it out.
And one of our writers wrote a great post on the topic, below are some highlights.
What Is Poop Made Up Of?
For the most part, water (approximately 75%) and the rest of it is a combination of dead and living bacteria, mucus and cells. Poop should have the consistency of peanut butter.
How Often Is “Normal?”
This is widely debated and I’ve seen many different answers to this question. This can range from person to person and culture to culture. How much or how often you eat is also a consideration. A traditional approach suggests anything from 3 times per day to once every 3 days within the “normal” range. A holistic approach suggests at least once per day, preferably 2 or even 3 times per day – after each meal (the typical person eats 3 meals per day).
Is There An “Ideal” Poop?
Remember this – B.S. (Best Sh*t).
‘B’ is for brown, which is the ideal color, due to the bile secreted in our liver. ‘S’ is for shape, size, smell and sink. You should hear a “plop” when your poop hits the toilet water and it should sink. If the size is about 4-8 inches and resembles the shape of a snake and doesn’t’ smell too much, give yourself a cheer! In addition, normal poop requires no straining for elimination.
Your “Ultimate” Poop should represent Type 4: like a sausage or snake, smooth and soft.
Constipation is the result of the stool traveling too slowly. Adding in more fiber, drinking more water and exercising often helps. If not, it may be a signal to other problems.
Diarrhea, on the other hand, is a result of the stool passing too quickly, especially through the large intestine where much of the water gets absorbed. This can result from stomach viruses, food allergies, intolerances and digestive disturbancesamongst other things. Regardless, chronic constipation or diarrhea is not normal.
What To Be On The Lookout For: Floating poop (usually) indicates a high-fat content, a possible sign of malabsorption.
Color may vary due to what foods you have consumed, medications you have taken and the amount of bile in your poop.
Anything in the light to medium brownshade is normal.
Green or yellow poop indicates food that has passed through the colon too quickly. It is a possible sign of a gallbladder issue, intestinal virus or bacteria infection.
Red poop is often associated with hemorrhoids. However, it can also be a result of inflammatory bowel disease.
Dark brown or blackcan indicate a serious problem in the upper GI tract such as bleeding.
So what can YOU do right now to make sure your poop game is strong?
Here are 18 Tricks To Have A Great Poop Every Time
Express Yourself: As the saying goes, “let go and let God.” Holding onto the past can lead to anxiety, which only amplifies stress. In Chinese medicine, it is believed that when the large intestine is out of balance, it is associated with an inability to grieve and let go. This results in your bowel movements to become sluggish, store and recycle waste, collect toxins, give you bad breath and myriad of other conditions.
Follow A Routine:Routine can drastically improve constipation. To promote a healthy evacuation, your morning may include a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in warm water first thing, followed by a nutrient rich smoothie full of protein, fiber and some healthy fat.
Sleep:Most people do not get enough quality sleep. If you are lacking sleep your body will not have enough energy in the long run to properly digest food.
Try Ileocecal Valve Massage:If the ileocecal valve – located between the small intestine and large intestine – does not work well, it can lead to the backlog of poop in the small intestine and constipation. You can massage reflex points to improve its functions.
Breathe:Take deep breaths, as when the flow of breath is labored or short, the mind becomes agitated, stress and anxiety are amplified and not enough nutrients get to areas in your body like your digestive system. Keep in mind that without proper breath, there is tension, blockage and resistance. Just 10 minutes of deep breathing can help regulate your bowel movements.
Eat Fiber:Every meal should contain some fibrous food, like brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, chia seeds, ground flax seeds, berries or avocado. Fiber helps move things along and provides food for your gut.
Drink Lots Of Purified Water: Water has the ability to push waste out of your colon. Aim for about 8 cups a day. For added absorption, add ¼ teaspoon of Himalayan sea salt to your water and keep your water at room temperature. This helps loosen, unblock and welcome muscle relaxation.
Take Your Probiotics And Prebiotics:Food is fertilizer for your gut bacteria, helping stimulate the growth of probiotics and prebiotics and encouraging bowel movements. Good sources of prebioticsare asparagus, artichokes, green (raw) bananas and brown rice. Good sources of probiotics are kombucha, fermented vegetables, sauerkraut, kimchi and apple cider vinegar.
Add Herbs And Spices:Certain herbs and spices nourish digestion and elimination organs such as the liver, kidneys, stomach and spleen. They improve the overall breakdown of food and can dislodge the waste that clings to your intestinal walls.
Some herbs and spices to add to your foods:
Try Yin Yoga:Yin yoga works on improving the health of organs, bones, joints, connective tissue, fascia and mind while incorporating breathwork. This type of yoga – with emphasis on lung and large intestine work – can help unlock a constipated colon.
Add Apple Cider Vinegar: ACV improves the production of stomach acid (HCl), which helps with the effective breakdown and absorption of foods and better elimination of waste. Aim for 1 tablespoon of ACV in warm water about 10 minutes before meals.
Eat More Healthy Fats:Keep in mind that your intestinal cell walls are made up of fat, meaning they need fats to function well. Healthy fats such as coconuts, olive and macadamia oils, avocado, oily fish, butter, nuts and seeds lubricate the bowels and help move waste through the colon.
Take Your Magnesium:Magnesium is a muscle and nervous system relaxant, making it perfect for alleviating constipation, stress and anxiety.
Eat Real Food:Keep your diet pure and whole food based. Avoid processed garbage and keep the majority of your diet plant based.
Exercise: Exercise helps the body to build and move Qi which will optimize how you process your food. Also the simple act of moving our bodies helps move stool through the system.
Use A Standing Desk:Sitting, especially after eating, slows digestion down, because it compresses the abdominal organs. Slowed digestion can lead to constipation and an imbalance in your gut microbiome. Standing or walking after a meal is great for getting the ball rolling.
Reduce Stress: Meditate, do yoga, get massage or acupuncture, make love, take naps in nature. Stress directly impacts digestive health. Taking measures to moderate the impacts of stress will not only help your digestive system, but everything else as well. Remember that “relaxing” does not involve watching high intensity action flicks on TV full of drama, violence and car chases. Just because you are sitting down blowing off steam from your day does not mean that you are reducing stress. Think about things like watching the flowers and the grass blow in the wind. That is relaxation.
JUICE:I love this delicious probiotic-rich recipe and I think you will too! The ingredients in this juice are not only tasty, but healing too!
Let me know in the comments what your favorite tips are for promoting a healthy gut! Also, I want to know how you like this JUICE! And if you’re signed up for the challenge, don’t forget to post your pictures on Instagram and Facebookusing #WITT30 and #Organifi. You can tag me too @drewcanole. Lots of cool prizes to giveaway!
Drew Canole is a rockstar in the world of fitness, nutrition and mindset, with a huge heart for others and doing his part to transform the world, one person at a time.
As the founder and CEO of Fitlife.TV, he is committed to sharing educational, inspirational and entertaining videos and articles about health, fitness, healing and longevity. He is also a best selling author and the founder of Organifi, an organic, incredibly delicious greens powder, chock-full of superfoods to make juicing easy no matter your busy schedule.
During my FitLife transformation, I lost 70 pounds! That's why I signed up for the protocol, but the most exciting result is that I found ME in the process. I had been hiding under a pile of pounds, self-doubt, and grief! FitLife changed my life and I knew I had to share it with others.
-Lynne, Longwood FL
I started with Fitlife back in 2011-2012…I wrote into Fitlife asking for an extreme amount of help. I was 300 pounds, with high cholesterol, and Drew helped me transform my life. I lost over 130 pounds and I no longer have high cholesterol. Not only did I lose weight, so did my husband, who lost over 70 pounds!