Categories
Body icon
Body
We celebrate all shapes and sizes because we see nothing but beauty.
View Topic
Life icon
Life
GR8NESS isn’t something you do; it’s how you live.
View Topic
Mind icon
Mind
Infuse mindfulness and awareness into everything you do.
View Topic
Self Care icon
Self Care
Refresh, renew, and reconnect with your inner self to nurture your wellbeing.
View Topic
Soul icon
Soul
Connect with all of humanity and discover your true self.
View Topic
Body
We celebrate all shapes and sizes because we see nothing but beauty.
View More
Categories
A life in motion is a life well lived. Move. Discover. Grow.
View Topic
True health lies in finding the perfect balance of mind, body, and spirit.
View Topic
Chronic pain can be debilitating. Regain control of your body and mind.
View Topic
Remedies sourced from nature help heal pains, both seen and unseen.
View Topic
Feed your body properly and you’ll nurture more than just the physical.
View Topic
Life
GR8NESS isn’t something you do; it’s how you live.
View More
Categories
Ease the way you move through life with simplicity and intelligence.
View Topic
Strengthening your relationships helps you celebrate who you’ve become.
View Topic
Raising children is the job of a lifetime. And you never get to retire.
View Topic
Our planet is a marvelous gift. Become the change the world needs by helping it heal.
View Topic
They’re an extended part of your family. Care for them the way they deserve.
View Topic
Mind
Infuse mindfulness and awareness into everything you do.
View More
Categories
While you cannot escape the stresses of life, you can find shelter inside yourself.
View Topic
Calming anxiety, easing depression, and discovering peace of mind are within your grasp.
View Topic
Everyday tools, training, and techniques to convince your brain it can be so much more.
View Topic
From mantras for self-love to changing the way you look at wellness.
View Topic
category alt tag
Self Care
Refresh, renew, and reconnect with your inner self to nurture your wellbeing.
View More
Categories
The journey of self-discovery is never-ending. Embrace your journey.
View Topic
Feeling good about your outside impacts how you feel about your inside. Feel beautiful both ways.
View Topic
Soul
Connect with all of humanity and discover your true self.
View More
Categories
Dive into your practice and experience something new every day. Give your mind some space to grow.
View Topic
Feed your mind with powerful positive statements to help you believe in yourself.
View Topic
In a fast-paced world, sometimes the best thing you can do is to breathe.
View Topic
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
525 Views
8 Min Read Time
4 Shares

How Gut Health Can Affect Insulin Resistance and the Liver

GR8NESS RATING
3
gr8 vote
GR8
0
meh vote
MEH
1
pass vote
PASS

Increasingly we are realizing that gut health can affect the entire body. From your immune system to digestion to brain health and sleep patterns, your gut microbiota affects it all. The trillions of fungi, bacteria, and microorganisms work hard to keep you healthy.

The good bacteria in your gut keep your immune system from attacking healthy cells, help your body absorb nutrients, and defend it against pathogens that cause illness. However, harmful bacteria also make a home in your gut. Although your good gut bacteria usually keep them in check, sometimes the balance shifts in their direction, and you may suffer from gut dysbiosis.

While you may expect gut issues to lead to digestive problems such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), they can also lead to issues such as insulin resistance and liver diseases.

The Role of Gut Microbiota and Insulin Resistance

Made by the pancreas, insulin is a hormone that plays a role in many bodily processes. It helps glucose move from your blood into cells in your fat, muscles, and liver so that it can be used for energy. We generally get insulin from the food we eat, although the liver can make insulin when needed. After you eat your blood sugar, or glucose, levels rise and your pancreas releases insulin to lower your blood sugar and keep it in the normal range.

What Is Insulin Resistance?

That’s why problems with insulin are often at the heart of many health conditions. More than 32.2% of the U.S. population have insulin resistance, a condition where the cells stop responding to insulin. When this happens, the pancreas will make more insulin so that glucose can enter your cells. As long as the pancreas can produce enough insulin to make up for your cells’ weak insulin response, your blood sugar will still be in the healthy range.

Gut Microbiota and Insulin Resistance

We’ve known for a while that insulin resistance is mainly influenced by a positive balance between food intake and energy expenditure. During the past five years, however, the role of gut microbiota in insulin resistance has been identified. The gut microbiota can be changed by diet, medications such as antibiotics, and by genetic factors. Changes in the balance of the gut’s microbiota, can cause inflammation that worsens insulin resistance along with other metabolic problems.

How to Improve Insulin Resistance with Diet

Diet and lifestyle choices can increase the risks of insulin resistance, or they can reduce these risks. Making certain changes to your diet may reduce the risk of insulin resistance and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

What to Eat

Modern diets often lack specific nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, and fiber. These nutrients play a key role in regulating blood glucose levels. Eating the following foods can provide these nutrients and help support insulin sensitivity:

  • Dark leafy greens, broccoli, and peppers
  • Tomatoes, packed with vitamins C and E
  • Lemons, oranges, and limes
  • High-fiber foods such as beans, lentils, and legumes
  • Whole grains including oats, quinoa, and barley
  • Proteins such as lean meats, fish, legumes, soy, and nuts
  • Fish high in omega-3 fatty acids such as sardines, herring, and salmon
  • Foods rich in antioxidants such as berries
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Unsweetened yogurt
  • Water
  • Unsweetened tea

What to Avoid

Just as some food can help control blood sugar levels, other can raise it. Specifically, foods high in sugar can overwhelm your body’s ability to make enough insulin and keep your blood glucose levels in a healthy range. These sugary foods can also inhibit the cells’ ability to absorb sugar. Over time, the cells will become increasingly less responsive to insulin. This causes too much sugar to remain in the blood and contributes to health issues.

Avoiding or severely limiting these foods can help control blood sugar levels:

  • Sweetened beverages such as sodas
  • Fruit juices
  • Excessive alcohol, especially beer and grain alcohol
  • Potatoes and other starchy vegetables
  • Processed foods
  • Sweets in general
  • White bead, pasta, rice, flour, and other refined grains
  • Milk
  • Fried foods
  • Butter, chocolate, salt pork and other foods high in saturated fats

Candida and Gut Health

Many types of fungi live in the gut, including the yeast candida. At normal levels, this yeast is not a problem. The good bacteria in your gut keep it under control. However, when it gets out of control, it causes an infection called candidiasis. This happens if there is an imbalance in good and unhealthy bacteria or if your immune system is compromised in some way.

Here are a few reasons why your gut may become imbalanced and cause candida overgrowth:

  • A diet high in refined carbs and sugars
  • Taking medication such as antibiotics and oral contraceptives
  • Excess alcohol intake
  • High-stress level
  • Diabetes or insulin resistance

When candida begins to grow unchecked, it can cause a variety of health problems, one of which is digestive issues.

Gut Microbiota Balance and Digestive Issues

Since the bacteria in your gut play a role in digestion, the right balance between the good and harmful bacteria plays a crucial role in healthy digestion. The good bacteria that live in your gut help process fiber, starches, and some sugars. When these bacteria become imbalanced, you may experience digestive issues such as diarrhea, nausea, gas, constipation, bloating, and cramps.

The conversation about candida and its effect on the body has been going on for years. The usual progression of events with candida overgrowth is as follows.

Overgrowth Begins

As mentions previously, candida overgrowth can happen due to exposure to anything that can kill healthy bacteria in the body, suppress immunity, or provide too much nourishment to unhealthy bacteria.

Candida Invasion of Organs

The liver is one of the most affected organs by candida overgrowth. The liver is part of the anatomy of your gut. It gets a large supply of blood directly from the intestines, where candida overgrowth generally begins.

Appetite, Cravings, and Changes in the Liver

The food you crave is mainly a liver function. As the liver is flooded with candida, it chemically changes your food cravings. You may start to crave foods that feed candida such as aged or fermented food and some sugars.

Surprisingly, these cravings are very specific. They include:

  • Bread
  • Alcohol, especially vodka, beer, and wine
  • Chocolate
  • Aged cheeses such as Swiss, Parmesan, and cheddar
  • Milk
  • Nuts or peanuts
  • Apples, bananas, and grapes

Less common cravings, but often seen in those more seriously affected, is the craving for vinegar.

Further Invasion Supported by Diet

Eating these candida-supporting foods will gradually allow the candida to grow and become more deeply entrenched in the body. Even when these foods are no longer consumed, established candida persists until it is treated effectively.

How Does Candida Overgrowth Affect the Liver?

Most of your body’s detox process happens in the liver. The liver helps your body get rid of environmental chemicals, hormones, heavy metals, and other toxins. Since the gut and the liver are connected, they work as the body’s main defense team. They protect it against rogue bacteria, pathogens, dietary irritants, and more.

Gut Health and Liver Disease

Researchers have discovered a possible link between fatty liver, gut microbiota, and carbohydrate metabolism. They have also found that Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is connected to changes in the gut microbiome.

As NAFLD advances, the number of genes encoded by the bacteria in the gut decreases, causing the gut microbiome to become less effective and diverse in its bacterial makeup. This means that a less diverse gut microbiome could indicate poorer health.

Probiotics for Liver and Gut Health

You probably know that probiotics are great for your gut health in general, but now new research suggests that they can also help protect your liver. More research is needed, but so far the results are pretty exciting. In some ways, this is not surprising, considering that your gut and your liver work so closely together. Check with your doctor to see if adding a probiotic is right for you.

 

How to Improve Liver Function

If you have liver issues as a result of candida overgrowth, talk to your doctor about what is best for you. They may adjust your diet to meet your specific needs or suggest other lifestyle changes, such as:

  • Discuss your liver health and alcohol with your doctor. In some instances, the state of your liver health will dictate that you avoid alcohol. Discuss this with your doctor for exact guidelines.
  • Avoid foods high in sugar, fat, and salt. This means avoiding unhealthy fast-food restaurants, undercooked or raw shellfish including clams and oysters, and sushi.
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Avoid large meals, refined carbohydrates, and saturated fats. This includes white bread, regular pasta, and rice. Eat fiber you can get from fruit and vegetables, whole grains, and cereals. Also, limit the amount of red meat you consume, choose low-fat dairy, and healthy fats found in fish, vegetable oils seeds, and nuts. Within these limits, choose food from all food groups, including fruit, vegetable, grains, meat, beans and legumes, low-fat milk, and oils.
  • Eat fiber-rich food: Fiber can help your liver work at its best. Including vegetables, fruit, whole-grain breads, cereals, and rice should supply your body with the fiber it needs.
  • Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of water helps your liver function better. Remind yourself to drink eight glasses of water a day.
  • Get regular exercise. Regular exercise helps your body burn triglycerides for fuel, which can help reduce liver fat.

A Note from GR8NESS

Please note that information on our website is not intended to diagnose, cure, or treat any medical condition. Before beginning a new routine, you must seek advice from your treating physician regarding the best course of treatment for your unique circumstance.

GR8NESS RATING
3
gr8 vote
GR8
0
meh vote
MEH
1
pass vote
PASS
Stephany
GR8NESS Writer
Stephany is a GR8NESS Contributing Editor who writes about pet care, CBD, stress, self care, meditation, time management, brain training, and natural remedies with a focus on the science behind it all. She has three dogs, three cats, walks half marathons, and practices yoga and powerlifting. You can often find her training her dogs or experimenting with new flavors in the kitchen.
Learn More
Related Articles
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Audrey_Popov / Shutterstock

How to Regulate Gut Health after Getting off Medications

Antibiotics are known for disrupting the balance of the gut microbiome, but did you know other medications can also do a number on your gut health? Our gut microbiome hosts about 1,000 unique species of bacteria, both beneficial and harmful. They help regulate our immune system, produce critical nutrients, help...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by maramorosz / Shutterstock

Leaky Gut? Stem the Tide with Seaweed

When digestive problems begin, they bring with them inevitable questions. We want to understand why we’re experiencing the symptoms we are so that we can get back to normal as soon as possible. Feeling sick has a way of causing us to stop, reconsider, and act. If you’re someone who...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Luck Business / Shutterstock

What Is Gut Health and Why Is It Important

As science and time progress, we learn more about how the body works, what we’ve been doing wrong throughout history—and what we’ve been doing right. One thing we keep exploring is the health of one’s gut. According to record, the study of gut health began in the mid-1880s. Since then,...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Şahin Yeşilyaprak / Unsplash

How to Kill Yeast Overgrowth and Treat Leaky Gut Naturally

Leaky gut, also known as intestinal permeability, results from yeast overgrowth in the digestive tract. When yeast grows in the intestines, it creates small cracks or holes in the intestinal walls, allowing toxins and harmful microorganisms to enter the circulatory system. The condition causes a range of unpleasant symptoms. However,...
The URL has been copied