Did you know that intermittent fasting was the most searched diet of 2019, according to Google?
While it is praised for benefits including weight loss, blood sugar reduction, lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and improved mental clarity, fasting also has positive implications on gut health.
Intermittent fasting or even just adequate spacing between meals, allow for a cleaning process to take place, which rids the digestive system of any unwanted food particles and bacteria. This "cleansing" process takes about two hours to move from the stomach to the small intestine, provided you are not eating. The moment you resume eating cleansing process stops.
So when you eat too frequently, you don't allow enough time for the digestive cleanup to happen. And as a result, food remnants and bacteria can find their way into the small intestine, potentially leading to the rise of SIBO, or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
SIBO, like Crohn's, celiac, and IBS, is a common gut condition plaguing an increasing number of people today.
While intermittent fasting is one approach to giving your body enough time to digest, absorb, and cleanse, here are three simple shifts that you can implement right now:
1. Space meals four to five hours apart.
2. Reduce snacking between meals.
3. Avoid food for at least three hours before bed.
It is likely that you have been told that frequent snacking keeps your metabolism revving. However, if you've been experiencing symptoms like gas, bloating, nausea, or cramping, your gut might be telling you it needs some rest!