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The Importance of Healthy Gut Bacteria for Seniors in Assisted Living – Phoenix AZ


November 12, 2018 in: Senior Health

In the human gut lives an entire community of microorganisms, belonging to a vast variety of different species. There are thousands of bacteria and fungi inside our intestines, which differ from each other more than an elephant does from an ant.

Health experts say a healthy balance of gut bacteria is essential to healthy aging, as an unhealthy mix can lead to obesity, depression, diabetes, and autoimmune disease.

Therefore, as you age, it becomes more important for you to take care of your gut microbiome to ensure a long, healthy life.

What Happens to Gut Bacteria as You Age?

The senior citizens in assisted living – Phoenix AZ are likely to have a less diverse gut microbiome, as it changes with passing years. This change also applies to the dominant species of bacteria in their intestine.  

Some factors that contribute to bringing these changes may include hospital admission, medication use, and dietary changes. While some of these changes may be subject to the physiology of aging, a diet low in fiber plays an important role in depleting certain species of bacteria.

In addition to this, there may be some immune system changes leading to constant inflammation, which may decide which bacteria species would predominate.

When your gut bacteria are less diverse, bad bacteria can overpower them and cause a variety of health diseases.

Not all senior citizens in assisted living in Phoenix AZ have the same gut health. However, those who are weaker tend to have less diverse microbiome as compare to those who are healthy.  

Therefore, it is crucial to keep your gut healthy so you may restrict the growth of bad bacteria in the gut and hence, prevent health issues, such as pneumonia and urinary tract infections.

Keeping Gut Bacteria Healthy

Many senior citizens in assisted living in Phoenix AZ may take probiotic tablets to keep the levels of healthy bacteria in their intestine in check. However, these commercial tablets may contain only a limited number of bacterial species, which may or may not have a positive effect on aging.

It is important to understand the dominant species of bacteria in your gut will depend on the food you eat on a daily basis. You may probably have an idea of how quickly bacteria reproduce – one factor decides their rate of reproduction is whether they get their preferred food or not.

Hence, it is beneficial for senior citizens in Phoenix AZ to avoid eating processed and high sugar foods and start consuming a diet containing fibrous foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. This shift will bring a drastic change in the profile of gut bacteria.

Eating Vegetables is the Way to Go

Including more vegetables in the daily diet can prove to be highly beneficial for seniors in assisted living in Phoenix AZ.

Plants usually contain natural chemicals like Polyphenols that can increase the number of healthy gut bacteria in the intestines.

There may be no direct solutions or easy way outs to achieving a healthy balance of gut microbiome but it is clear our diet plays a major role in building the right environment. Eating a well-balanced diet rich in fresh, whole foods can help ensure a smooth aging journey.

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