If you want to improve your overall health, the gut is a great place to start.

Experts are still just scratching the surface of the gut’s impact on our health, but we know that gut health is closely linked to immune health and mental health, and these things are not to be taken lightly.

So, how can you strengthen and purify your stomach if you haven’t been taking good care of yourself until now? Here are some great tips to help you get started.

1.    Consider activated charcoal

If you’ve very recently consumed something that might be bad for your health, first decide whether it’s a medical emergency. If it is, head straight to the nearest emergency room. Otherwise, you may be able to clear your system with some activated charcoal.

Activated charcoal is often used by health professionals to clear the system in cases of alcohol or other types of poisoning. And if you think you’re struggling with either of these things, again, head straight to the E.R. But if you’ve just had a little too much alcohol to drink, activated charcoal can help purify your stomach. And if you’re noticing this is a habit, find a treatment center to avoid further damage to your system.

2.    Take probiotics

The stomach is lined with good and bad bacteria, and things like sugars, starches and alcohol tend to feed the bad bacteria. Things like leafy greens feed the good bacteria. Probiotics help flood the gut with healthy bacteria to drown out the bad bugs. You can take probiotic supplements or add more yogurt and fermented foods to your diet.

3.    Eat prebiotics

Prebiotics are the things, like leafy greens, that help feed the good bacteria in your gut. The more prebiotics you eat, the more those good bugs will flourish. And as we’ve learned from science, the bugs that are deemed as good are the ones associated with improved health.

4.    Hydrate well

If you’re dehydrated, your body will have trouble releasing toxins. You can think of a hydrated body like a well-oiled machine where everything, including toxins, flows freely. Try to drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water daily. So, if you weigh 150 pounds, try drinking 75-ounces of water. One of the many cool facts is that an average person drinks 30,000 gallons of water in their lifetime.

5.    Clean out naturally

Eat a fiber-rich diet to help your body clear out waste naturally. This is your body’s way of releasing toxins, so the more regular you are, the healthier your stomach will be. As you focus on eating more prebiotics, this might happen naturally. But if you’re eating lots of fiber and still having elimination issues, consider taking a supplement like magnesium oxide that will help get things moving.

There’s a lot we still don’t know about gut health, but we do know enough to take this seriously. So, if you want to improve your overall health, focus on your purifying your stomach, avoid bad habits and clean up your diet. You’ll enjoy immeasurable health benefits when your gut is happy!