The intestinal flora is composed of a set of beneficial bacteria for proper intestinal health, in addition to avoiding other harmful bacteria that can cause infections. We have neither more nor less than 2,000 species of bacteria that form the intestinal flora, which contributes to the production of necessary vitamins in the body. These bacteria are provided through food and must form a balance to be beneficial, since if they are altered they can lead to disorders. Food plays a vital role in the formation of bacteria, so in this FastlyHealarticle we recommend foods to improve intestinal flora .
Function of the intestinal flora
The intestinal flora is responsible for producing a number of vitamins that our body can not synthesize, such as vitamin K . For example, this vitamin is very important for newborns by cesarean section, since their intestines are clean of bacteria during the first months and breast milk does not provide them with the vitamin K they need. For this reason, it is necessary that a newborn is “contaminated” as soon as possible with these germs and develops a healthy intestinal flora.
The intestinal flora intervenes in different aspects:
- Some allergies are related to disorders of the immune system due to problems in the intestinal flora.
- The celiac disease may also experience this problem due to an alteration in the intestinal flora. This is explained by a higher concentration of harmful bacteria in the intestine of people with celiac disease.
- Having an altered intestinal flora has been linked to an increased risk of suffering from cholesterol .
- Having certain bacteria in the intestinal flora can stimulate the creation of antibodies that contribute to the elimination of cells prone to being tumorous, preventing colon cancer .
Prebiotics: essential for intestinal health
The prebiotics are foods that have a high level of fiber , which is fermented and contributes to the formation of the flora. Cereals and tubers are foods rich in fiber as well as containing properties that exert a protective action on the mucosa of the intestine.
- Artichokes . They contain one of the most common prebiotics, known as inulin.
- Garlic . Another food that contains inulin, making it an excellent option when consuming prebiotic products.
- Onion . Both raw and cooked, it is an excellent food that contributes to the maintenance of a healthy intestinal flora.
- Asparagus . They contain fructooligosaccharides, a type of fiber that is healthy for the body.
- Wheat bran . Provides a large amount of vitamin K necessary in the intestinal flora.
- Wheat flour . Whole wheat flour or cooked is another of the foods that provides prebiotic fiber beneficial for the intestinal flora.
- Pulses . They contain refined and stachyose, which have a prebiotic action.
Probiotics: important for the immune system
The probiotics are miocrooganismos reaching the intestine and contribute to a smooth functioning along with other bacteria, strengthen the immune system. The only food that naturally contains probiotics is yogurt , which contains live microorganisms that are formed during its production. The products that are recommended to obtain probiotics are yogurt, liquid yogurt and fermented milk, from 2 to 4 a day, in addition to being convenient to substitute milk for these. The bifidus yogurt has the advantage of bifidobacteria also contain lactic bacteria, other bacteria for healthy intestinal flora. the kefir It is another dairy product that, in addition to having healthy bacteria, has yeasts, another type of beneficial microorganism.
In the case of people allergic to lactose, they may choose to consume soy yogurt . Another food rich in probiotics is miso soup .
Other beneficial foods
In addition to the products mentioned above, there are other foods to improve the intestinal flora.
- Olive oil and nuts . They are foods rich in vitamin E and Omega 3, which are beneficial to strengthen the walls and mucus of the intestine. Nuts, such as walnuts, have positive effects but their consumption should be more moderate due to their laxative effect.
- Papaya, pineapple and figs . These foods have antibiotic properties that help destroy bacteria that are harmful to the intestine.
- Dried fruit . It is even four times richer in fiber than fresh fruits. Therefore, consuming plums and raisins is a good way to benefit the formation of our intestinal flora.
Inadequate food for the intestinal flora
Just as there are a set of foods that improve the intestinal flora, there are others that can be harmful . Therefore, it is advisable to find out about these to moderate their consumption.
- Coffee and chocolate . Both products have laxative effects that hinder the proper formation of the intestinal flora and its bacteria.
- Fatty foods . High-fat foods such as fried foods, in addition to large meals, stimulate the creation of gastric juices that irritate the intestine and can cause diarrhea.
- Lack of carbohydrates . Low carbohydrate diets hinder the correct state of the intestinal flora. For this reason, many popularized diets to lose weight are harmful because they do not contribute to a correct health of the intestinal flora, altering the immune system and posing a risk to health.
- Excess meat or fish . A diet based on a regular intake of meat or fish can stimulate the proliferation of proteins that lead to the creation of bacteria that are harmful to the intestine. Proteins are digested normally in the stomach, however, when there is an excess of it, some proteins are not digested and reach the colon without being processed.
This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.
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I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.