Getting Healthy Starts with Your Gut Amidst the Chaos Brought to you by Renew Life and TheCo Over the last number of weeks, I’ve shared more and more about how part of my goals for 2018 included getting healthy. This goal encompasses physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. I think one of my biggest stumbling blocks in my life last year was that I was unhealthy – all around. The busier I became, the less time I would take to focus on myself. I’d try to eat a salad once a day and call it a healthy meal, I’d walk my laundry baskets up three flights of stairs and call it a workout and I’d catch recaps of Dr. Phil on YouTube and call it my therapy. The bottom line was that I wasn’t pro-active in taking control of my own health. I thought that a few half-baked attempts were good enough and as a result, I ended 2017 in a pretty bad space – emotionally, mentally and physically depleted, worn out and exhausted. that if I ever wanted to pull myself out of this funk I was in, I was going to have to be pro-active and consistent. It’s not enough to do things for five days and think you’re going to cure all your symptoms. Our bodies are intricate and have complex systems that require time to heal. The good news is that it IS possible to reverse bad habits! The bad news is, most of us don’t even know where to start. Or worse, we start by doing all these complex things that we think might be beneficial but unless we address some of the root issues, we won’t ever see their full benefits…so we spin in circles. Recently I was honest on my Instagram stories about some of the occasional “intestinal” issues I’ve had over the years. I was really nervous to share about that, as it’s not really a glamorous thing to talk about. But what was remarkable were how many women responded privately saying, “YES! ME TOO!” So, if we are all struggling with similar issues, why is there shame in talking about it? Well today, we’re going there! We are going to focus on getting ourselves physically healthy in for spring and to start, we need to first talk about how health actually begins even before we put any food into our mouths. It starts with our gut. And while you may have heard that, like I have too, you may not understand why or how a healthy gut can have such a positive impact on your overall health. I’ve been told many times over the last 12 years that I’ve been struggling with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, I’ve been told, “You must try a probiotic.” To be honest, in the beginning, I often dismissed it. I think I might have tried a probiotic for two weeks, didn’t notice a difference and tossed it because I didn’t understand much about what it was doing. There are some foods that we eat already have lots of probiotics in them, including yogurt, some pickles and olives, kimchi, and others. There are even some food brands now specifically targeting this very issue and adding in additional probiotics such as yogurt and juice. But while that’s a great place to start, the reality is that eating and drinking those products won’t replenish an already depleted amount of flora in your system. You need something much stronger that will come in and really start the nutritional healing. Starting at the beginning of 2018, I began taking a daily probiotic capsule from Renew Life called Ultimate Flora VS for Women with 50 Billion cultures, 9 strain per capsule probiotic formula that are designed to help deliver healthy bacteria in your gut. Knowing the occasional digestive issues that I’ve had and how many health professionals have suggested I take a probiotic supplement, I’ve decided it’s time to get to the bottom of this health concern and that has to start in the gut. So, what is a probiotic anyways and why is it crucial to my overall health? Great question, I’m glad you asked! Probiotics are a natural part of your body’s make-up. They are filled with microorganisms known as microflora that live in your intestines. They basically are the good bacteria that help keep the bad bacteria in check. They do this by helping with nutrient absorption, proper digestion and boosting overall immune and digestive health. A healthy gut can help protect against stomach discomfort and help boost your immune health. Many people these days don’t even realize just how depleted of vitamins, nutrients, let alone good bacteria they are. There are more obvious times where people might think to add in a probiotic like after they’ve been sick or have recently finished a round of antibiotics. And that list could almost describe just about anyone we know, right?! The bottom line is, probiotics are a crucial foundational step to a healthy gut, which will ultimately lead to a healthy outlook on life. RenewLife even has a line of chewable probiotics for kids that my kids have started taking. I honestly had no idea kids could even take probiotics! I’m really excited to see how these probiotics will benefit them in the long term. So, if you are focused on having a healthier gut, I would encourage you to join me on this quest for health this spring, starting with these foundational steps. It takes guts to be healthy, so let’s make sure ours are filled with the good stuff! Love & Blessings, Christine Note: This post was sponsored by Renew Life where I have received product and/or compensation in exchange for my honest review. As always, the thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.