7 Simple Solutions To Improve Gut Health in Monsoon

Monsoon can wreak havoc on your stomach. Discover expert tips to keep your gut healthy and happy during this rainy season.

By URLife Team
07 Jun 2024

The arrival of monsoons can mean respite from the heat. However, the pleasant weather also brings a higher risk of allergies, digestive issues, and water-borne diseases. This season often sees a spike in digestive problems, with many people experiencing vomiting, nausea, acidity, chronic constipation, ulcerative colitis, gastritis, and gut sensitivity.


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Related story: Fermented Foods To Improve Gut Health


Common Gut Issues in Monsoon

Our immunity tends to drop during seasonal changes, making us more prone to infections. The damp and unclean conditions during the monsoons are perfect for germs, bacteria, and viruses to thrive. These germs can enter our bodies through contaminated food, leading to various gut-related diseases. 

  • Nausea and Vomiting: During the monsoon, the risk of consuming contaminated food and water increases, leading to gastrointestinal infections. The presence of harmful bacteria and viruses in contaminated food can trigger symptoms like nausea and vomiting. 
  • Acidity and Heartburn: Monsoon weather often leads to irregular eating habits, as cravings for spicy and oily foods increase. These foods can cause acidity and heartburn by increasing stomach acid production. 
  • Chronic Constipation: Changes in diet and decreased physical activity during the rainy season can lead to chronic constipation. People tend to consume fewer fibrous foods and drink less water, which are crucial for healthy digestion. 
  • Ulcerative Colitis: Ulcerative colitis, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease, can cause flare-ups during the monsoon due to infections and increased stress levels. The damp and unhygienic conditions make it easier for infections to spread, aggravating the condition. 
  • Gastritis: Gastritis, the inflammation of the stomach lining, can be exacerbated during the monsoon by bacteria present in contaminated food. Symptoms include stomach pain, bloating, and indigestion. 
  • Gut Sensitivity: Many people experience increased gut sensitivity during the monsoon. Changes in diet, bacterial infections, and stress contribute to this discomfort. Symptoms can include bloating, gas, and stomach cramps. 


Related story: Good Gut Foods: Prebiotics And Probiotics


Natural Ways To Heal Gut During Monsoon

Maintaining good gut health is crucial for effective digestion and overall well-being. A healthy gut ensures that food is broken down properly, nutrients are absorbed efficiently, and waste is eliminated effectively. This process is essential for providing the body with the energy and nutrients it needs to function. As a matter of fact, the gut-brain axis is a connection between the digestive system and the brain. A healthy gut can positively influence mood and mental health, reducing the risk of anxiety and depression.

By taking these precautions, you can enjoy the monsoon season while keeping your digestive system healthy and happy.


1. Include Ginger and Garlic

Ginger and garlic are commonly used herbs in households worldwide, and they offer numerous health benefits, especially for gut health. Raw ginger and garlic act as prebiotics, providing nourishment for friendly gut bacteria. Apart from this, ginger contains gingerol, while garlic contains allicin, both of which have potent antibacterial and antifungal properties. This helps improve gut health and supports a diverse microbiome.

  • Chop or grate fresh ginger and garlic and add them to your meals, such as stir-fries, curries, and soups. This not only enhances the flavour but also boosts the nutritional content of your dishes.
  • Enjoy a warm cup of ginger tea by steeping fresh ginger slices in hot water. This soothing beverage not only aids digestion but also supports gut health.


2. Choose Cooked Foods Over Raw Foods

During the monsoon, it's especially important to choose cooked foods over raw foods. Cooking has a bactericidal (bacteria-killing) effect, which means it destroys harmful bacteria that might be present in the food. This is crucial during the monsoon when the humidity provides a conducive environment for bacterial and fungal growth. Cooking food reduces this risk by killing off any harmful bacteria.

  • Instead of raw vegetable salads, choose cooked vegetable dishes or soups. For example, a warm vegetable soup can be a safer and equally nutritious alternative to a raw vegetable salad.
  • Make sure to cook meat, poultry, and seafood thoroughly to eliminate any harmful bacteria. If you're eating leftovers, make sure to reheat them thoroughly to ensure any bacteria that may have developed are killed.


Related story: 3 Ingredients That Promote Good Gut Bacteria


3. Add Fermented Food Items

Fermented foods are rich in probiotics, which are beneficial gut bacteria that act as the first line of defence against infections. They help maintain a healthy balance of gut flora. Probiotics synthesise SCFAs and Vitamin K in the body. SCFAs provide energy to the gut cells and have anti-inflammatory properties, while Vitamin K is essential for blood clotting and bone health.

  • Idlis and Dosas: These popular Indian fermented foods are made from rice and lentil batter. They are not only delicious but also packed with probiotics.
  • Homemade Curds (Yogurt): Making curds at home ensures you get a fresh and natural source of probiotics. Enjoy it plain, in smoothies, or as a side dish.
  • Kimchi: This traditional Korean dish made from fermented vegetables is rich in probiotics and adds a spicy kick to your meals.
  • Kefir: A fermented milk drink, kefir is packed with probiotics and can be consumed as a refreshing beverage or added to smoothies.


4. Take Time To Chew Your Food

Good digestion starts in the mouth, and proper chewing plays a crucial role. Chewing breaks down food into smaller pieces, making it easier for your stomach to digest. It also mixes food with saliva, which contains enzymes that begin the digestive process. Chewing slowly gives your brain time to receive signals of fullness, helping prevent overeating.

  • Take your time when eating. Avoid rushing through meals or eating on the run. Sit down, relax, and focus on your food.
  • Aim to chew each bite about 20-30 times. This may feel excessive at first, but it ensures your food is well-broken down and mixed with saliva.
  • Try to eat without distractions such as TV or smartphones. This helps you concentrate on chewing and enjoying your meal.


Related story: The Link Between The Gut Bacteria And Our Mind


5. Consume Fruits and Vegetables Immediately After Cutting

Consuming contaminated fruits or vegetables can cause infections and negatively affect your gut health. Eating them fresh minimises this risk. When fruits and vegetables are left exposed to air, they can attract flies and insects. These pests can infest the food, leading to contamination by harmful bacteria and pathogens. Freshly cut fruits and vegetables retain more nutrients. The longer they are exposed to air, the more they lose vital nutrients due to oxidation. 

  • When fruits and vegetables are left exposed to air, they can attract flies and insects. These pests can infest the food, leading to contamination by harmful bacteria and pathogens.
  • Freshly cut fruits and vegetables retain more nutrients. The longer they are exposed to air, the more they lose vital nutrients due to oxidation.
  • If you need to store cut fruits or vegetables for later, cover them tightly with plastic wrap, store them in an airtight container, or refrigerate them to keep them fresh and protected from pests.
  • Ensure that the surfaces and utensils you use for cutting are clean to prevent the transfer of bacteria.


6. Avoid Fried Food Items

Foods that take a long time to digest can strain your digestive system, especially when your body is already dealing with seasonal changes and potential infections. Heavily digested foods like seafood, oily foods, and milk can lead to bloating, indigestion, and discomfort, which are best avoided during times when digestive health is already compromised.

  • Foods high in vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, bell peppers, and strawberries, boost your immune system and aid in digestion.
  • Opt for lighter, easily digestible foods such as soups, stews, and steamed vegetables. These are milder on the stomach and help maintain good digestion.


Related story: What is The Role of Acid in Our Stomach


7. Increase Your Stomach Acid

Many people experiencing gas and bloating may actually have too little stomach acid rather than too much. Maintaining proper stomach acid levels is crucial for effective digestion and pathogen defence.

  • Mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water and drink it before meals. This can help increase stomach acidity naturally.
  • Drinking too much water during meals can dilute stomach acid. Aim to drink fluids between meals rather than during.
  • Large meals can overwhelm the stomach and reduce acid effectiveness. Smaller, more frequent meals can help maintain acid levels and improve digestion.


Good gut health is essential for efficient digestion and a healthy body. By maintaining a balanced diet, staying hydrated, exercising regularly, and managing stress, you can support your gut and, consequently, your overall health. Remember, a healthy gut contributes to a strong immune system, better mental health, and effective metabolism, making it a cornerstone of your well-being.


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