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5 Signs of a Healthy Gut

Video Transcript:

Hi everyone. Welcome back to our channel.

We all know that gut health is important, but what does it actually mean to have a healthy gut?

What does a healthy gut look like?

The good news is that our body provides us with clues that give us insight into the state of our gut health and understanding what a healthy gut looks like is key to achieving and maintaining our overall wellness.

In today's video, I'll be discussing the importance of gut health as well as providing you with five signs that indicate a healthy gut.

I'm Katie Bailey. I'm a gut health dietician at Oswald Digestive Clinic, where we help individuals improve and resolve their bothersome gut issues like gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and more. If you're interested in learning more about gut health, I'll link off 5 guide five Ways to Improve Your Gut Health here. Let's get started on today's topic.

Healthy Gut Microbiome

The importance of gut health extends far beyond digestion.

Our gut is home to trillions of microbes that make up our gut microbiome that assist in the breakdown of our food, the absorption of our nutrients, as well as fighting off pathogens.

Now, this microbiome can affect our immune system, our mental health, our skin, as well as the body's ability to break down and absorb our food, and when this micro gut health is compromised, this can actually create a whole range of different problems.

It's essential to ensure that your gut is healthy and functioning as it should, and recognizing what signs point to a healthy gut can be very beneficial in helping you in your journey towards better health.

Signs Of A Healthy Gut

The first sign of a healthy gut is regular daily bowel movements.

In the absence of digestive symptoms, ideally, we want to be having anywhere from one to three bowel movements a day that are well-formed and easy to pass.

The Bristol stool chart can be a easy way to track and determine what your stool type is.

We've made multiple videos regarding the Bristol stool chart (watch here).

If you're interested in learning more when you're looking at the chart, we ideally want to be type three and type four, which are sausage shaped and easy to pass.

Also, we want our stool to be brown.

Brown is the normal color of stool and consistently being colors like green and yellow and red, black or white indicate that something else might be going on.

Now, stool is going to vary slightly from day to day, but consistently having stool that has a different consistency or color may indicate that we need to investigate further.

If you're not experiencing symptoms of gas and bloating, diarrhea, constipation, abdominal pain, and you're having daily bowel movements that are brown and easy to pass, then that does indicate that your GI system may be functioning properly.

Signs Of A Healthy Gut - Gut Health And Mental Health

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The second sign is the absence of mood disorders.

The gut is often called the second brain because of the communication network that links the gut and the brain together called the gut brain access.

This axis is a two-way street of communication, and it's how chemical messengers like neurotransmitters that are produced in the gut can relay messages back to the brain.

Serotonin, for instance, is a neurotransmitter that's largely produced in the gut.

About 95% of it is, and there's also another neurotransmitter called GABA that's produced in the gut that is helpful in controlling feelings of anxiety and fear.

Serotonin can affect your sleep because it's a precursor to melatonin, but it can also affect your mood and it's associated with feelings of happiness when there is an imbalance in your gut microbiome.

This can affect the amount of neurotransmitters like serotonin and GABA that are produced and research has linked poor gut health to mood disorders like anxiety and depression, and when you have sufficient amounts of these neurotransmitters that will positively impact your mood.

Signs Of A Healthy Gut - Energy Levels

This third sign of a healthy gut is sustained energy levels.

If you're not able to properly break down and absorb nutrients like iron and B vitamins or just enough nutrients in general, that is going to impact how much energy you have throughout the day.

Now, digestion in itself requires quite a bit of energy, and if you're already struggling with digestion, that's going to require even more energy and can leave you feeling fatigued.

Like I mentioned before, serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that is largely produced in the gut, is a precursor to melatonin and when you need, this neurotransmitter is not produced as well or not as much that's going to impact your sleep, which then and therefore will impact your energy levels.

If you have sustained energy throughout the day, that can be a sign that your body's able to absorb and break down your nutrients for energy.

Signs Of A Healthy Gut - Gut Health And Acne

The fourth sign I want to talk about is clear skin.

When there is damage to the gut lining, like with leaky gut or just gut imbalances, this can cause systemic inflammation leading to inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, acne, or rashes.

There are also specific types of bad bacteria that can populate in the gut and can contribute to the inflammation that manifests itself as skin issues, so having clear skin or minimal skin issues can be a sign of a healthy gut.

Signs Of A Healthy Gut - Good Immune Function

The last sign is good immune function.

More than 70% of our immune system resides in the gut and our gut microbiome maintains homeostasis of the immune system.

Your immune system and your gut work together to protect the body from harmful invaders and when your gut is healthy, your immune system functions optimally.

The microbes in our gut form a barrier to resist incoming pathogens and toxins, but when there's an imbalance in our bacteria or the gut lining is damaged, that allows harmful substances to leak into the bloodstream, which creates an inflammatory immune response, and over time, this can cause the immune system to start attacking everything, including healthy cells, which leads to autoimmunity.

Altered immune function can then make you more susceptible to infections and disease, so therefore a well-functioning immune system that is not overactive can be indicative of a healthy gut.


To wrap up our topic for today, recognizing the signs of a healthy gut can help you determine whether or not you need to focus more on your gut health.

If you're having normal bowel movements, clear skin, sustained energy throughout the day, you don't have any mood disorders and you have good immune function, then that is most likely signs that you have a healthy gut.

However, if any of these are not optimal, that can indicate that your gut may need some extra attention.

Now, we've made many videos on gut health and how to improve it.

If that's something that you want to learn more about or you can work with us one-on-one to determine the root cause of any of your gut health concerns overall, simply getting adequate sleep, managing your stress, mindful eating, eating a diet that's full of whole foods and less processed foods can all be beneficial in helping to promote gut health.

If you like this video, please hit the like button and subscribe for more nutrition videos.

I hope you found this video to be helpful, and if you're interested in working with our clinic, you can click the link here to make an appointment.

We do take insurance and you can find that information on our website.

Thanks for watching. I'll see you next time. Bye.

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If you'd like to explore any of this information further or obtain an individualized nutrition plan, you can schedule an initial appointment at our clinic.  We also take insurance and some of our clients get full coverage, which is great.

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Or you can just start by downloading our FREE GUIDE: 5 WAYS TO IMPROVE GUT HEALTH  




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