How to Take Control of Your Own Health

As many of us have learned firsthand in recent years, the number one way to take control of your health is to be one’s own advocate. We must do the necessary research and ask all the questions that are in our wheelhouse to control and handle when it comes to managing our health.

Second, only take prescription medication as directed to avoid:

  • Potential abuse
  • Dangerous side effects
  • An accidental overdose

A third point that is vital to address is looking into and researching our healthcare providers. If it is a business today, then why would I want to do business with someone who literally has my life in their hands and whom I know nothing of? Furthermore, why would I then hand over an enormous amount of my time and money to this “business” without knowing what type of service I am going to receive?

Another area that’s a significant concern for many today is the cost of prescriptions. Again, we need to do our due diligence and find the many sources of pharmacies able to dispense medication to us, from online pharmacies to retail pharmacies or even compounding pharmacies; there are many ways to find low-cost prescriptions.

The last thing I would say is crucial, if not the most important, for managing one’s health is to be proactive with our physical, mental, and spiritual health. The National Institutes of Health writes, “People often think about wellness in terms of physical health — nutrition, exercise, weight management, etc., but it is so much more. Wellness is a holistic integration of physical, mental, and spiritual well-being, fueling the body, engaging the mind, and nurturing the spirit. Although it always includes striving for health, it’s more about living life fully, and is a lifestyle and a personalized approach to living life in a way that… allows you to become the best kind of person that your potentials, circumstances, and fate will allow,”.

How can I improve my gut health?

It’s a hot top these days: gut health. It’s especially an essential topic for me to fully comprehend as I have diverticulosis and recently had a horrific diverticulitis flare-up. For me, I cannot eat at all:

  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Popcorn
  • Raw oats
  • Granola

Integrating plant-based proteins into your diet is crucial, just like incorporating animal-based proteins. Plant-based proteins bring a multitude of benefits, especially for gut health. These proteins contain specific enzymes that aid in breaking down food more efficiently, which in turn supports the production of bile salts necessary for healthy digestion. Without these enzymes, you might encounter digestive issues, including inflammation. It’s essential to consume plant-based proteins as regularly as animal-based ones.

Whole grains are another powerhouse for gut health, offering a rich source of fiber and essential nutrients like B vitamins, potassium, manganese, calcium, and Vitamin E. These nutrients collectively boost the immune system and sustain energy levels throughout the day. Moreover, whole grains are low in calories but packed with nutrients and fiber, helping keep the digestive tract clean and toxin-free.

Legumes, rich in plant-based proteins, are fantastic for promoting gut health. They can significantly improve bowel regularity and help alleviate constipation. The high fiber content in legumes is crucial for regulating the digestive system, increasing the waste passed through the digestive tract each day. This fiber also fosters a healthy gut microbiome, boosting beneficial bacteria while inhibiting harmful ones. Essentially, legumes help cleanse the body by promoting regular bowel movements, thus preventing intestinal diseases.

Fruits and vegetables are indispensable for gut health due to their high fiber and nutrient content, which supports a healthy microbiome and prevents the growth of harmful bacteria. These foods also help detoxify the body through daily bowel movements. Even though they contain minimal protein, their role in maintaining gut health through cleansing and microbiome support is vital.

Including fish and meats in your diet is also essential for gut health. Meats, especially grass-fed beef and free-range chicken, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which bolster a healthy gut microbiome.

Omega-3 fatty acids also play a role in repairing and strengthening the intestinal barrier, shielding your digestive system from toxins and harmful substances. Fish like salmon are excellent sources of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and Vitamin D. Due to the algae in their diet, salmon are high in Vitamin D, along with selenium and Vitamin B12, which benefit not just the gut but also heart health.

Let’s double back on the topic of legumes. Beans are my favorite. In fact, my childhood nickname from my family is “Bean.” Apparently, when I was two years old, I ate a whole family-sized bowl of pork and beans at a family BBQ. Initially, it was “Pork and Bean,” then “Beaner” or “Bean” depending on which family member was talking to me.

Are beans good for gut bacteria?

Well, we know they are good for our hearts based on the childish playground potty humor rhyme. Remember? What boy mom could forget the following?:

Beans, beans, they’re good for your heart

The more you eat, the more you fart

The more you fart, the better you’ll feel

So eat your beans at every meal

Legumes like beans help release short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) that strengthen your intestinal cells and enhance the absorption of micronutrients. Plus, they provide nourishment for your gut flora, helping to maintain a healthy gut. If you enjoy fermented beans such as lacto-fermented lentils, chickpeas, or miso, that’s an added benefit!

For those who follow a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, incorporating beans into your diet is a no-brainer. They not only promote gut health but also support heart health. Packed with protein and fiber, beans are a fantastic choice for maintaining a healthy digestive system.

The high fiber content in beans helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases by removing excess cholesterol from the body through bowel movements. This process prevents harmful LDL cholesterol from sticking to your arterial walls, allowing blood to flow smoothly throughout your body. Additionally, studies have shown that beans are rich in saponins—an anti-inflammatory compound that helps eliminate harmful bacteria in the intestines. So, enjoy your beans for a happy gut and a healthy heart!

How to take control of your own health

In conclusion, taking control of your health requires proactive advocacy, responsible medication use, diligent research on healthcare providers, and cost-effective strategies for prescriptions. Integrating balanced nutrition promotes gut and overall health. By being proactive in all aspects of well-being, we become empowered to lead a healthier, more fulfilling life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *