Staying Home: Warm Your Body and Restore Your Gut Health 巣ごもり生活、身体を温めて腸を元気に!

Published on: June 22, 2020

The decrease in physical activity from staying at home is weakening our bodies. One mom shares how you can counter these ill effects by boosting your gut health and doing a simple but powerful exercise.

 

By Aoko Yukimune / Translated by Fumi Yasui  [日本語記事へ]

 

The recent measures against COVID-19 were on a large scale and lasted longer than anything of the sort that we’d ever experienced before. The tough restrictions have physically affected both adults and children in the following ways:

  1. Lack of exercise.
  2. Stress from disturbed routines, restriction of freedom, reduction of your own time, and uncertain situations, etc.
  3. Less time spent in the sun.
  4. Excessive sterilization and disinfection (we’re using alcohol to disinfect many times a day as part of the corona countermeasures).

 

These have negative effects on the body such as:

  • Disturbance of autonomic nerves
  • Deterioration of the intestinal environment
  • Decreased immunity
  • Muscle weakness

 

There may be many other possible negative effects on the body besides these. If these effects get worse, it can take time to correct them — but it’s possible. 

And, in my opinion, the most effective measure is to energize the intestinal bacteria! 

You may have heard that you should consume good bacteria, but you can’t increase good bacteria just by eating them. First, you have to prepare an environment where bacteria can easily reproduce.

There are two main methods to do that.

 

  1. “Feed” the good bacteria

You can actively take prebiotics, which feed the good bacteria.

  • Good: Oligosaccharides, dietary fiber, fermented foods
  • Avoid: Antibiotics, preservative-rich foods, sugar, alcohol, excessive disinfection

 

  1. Increase body temperature

When you make yogurt at home, the ideal temperature for fermentation (i.e., when the bacteria is active) is 40-45℃. Along the same lines, the ideal intestinal (body) temperature is 38-40℃, which means the body surface temperature will be around 37 ℃.

Ways you can actively warm your body (i.e., your intestine) — and not just prevent cooling — include: 

  • Eat warm food (try to avoid eating cold food as much as possible)
  • Move your muscles. It’s especially effective to exercise the lower body, where 70% of the body’s muscles are. Also important are the shoulder blades, which have many brown fat cells around them. This also helps to maintain a beautiful posture.
  • Get a good night’s sleep.

 

When the bacteria are nourished and warmed, there are many happy results. Your gut bacteria increase; you boost your immunity. Your levels of the happiness hormone (serotonin) rise as does the sleep comfort hormone (melatonin), and your autonomic nerve balance and blood flow improve. You may get relief from allergies, gain resistance to stress, detoxify — and these all contribute to beautiful skin and diet!

 

In addition, eating foods with high vitamin D (sardines, saury, salmon, dried shiitake mushrooms, jellyfish, etc.) and appreciating what you have will also boost your health.

 

Lastly, I will introduce a great exercise that works on many muscles: squatting! The hip joint is the largest joint in the body, so if you can move it well, you can use many muscles at once.

 

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and press down into the floor from the middle of your heels.
  2. Think of bending your hips (rather than your knees) and squat down as far as you can. Take care not to arch your back. Feel like someone is pulling you backwards from your hips. Keep your shoulders relaxed and feel your navel tuck in. 
  3. Then, keeping your knees pointed in the same direction as your toes (i.e., don’t buckle your knees inward), push the floor from the middle of your heels to come back to standing position. 

 

The points to watch out for are the direction of the knees and the center of gravity. It may be difficult until you get used to it, but if you can do it well, your buttocks and inner thighs will tighten!

 

The general movement is also effective for correcting pelvic distortion if you apply it when you’re bending down to pick up a child or a toy from the floor!

 

To try it out and have a go at doing it correctly I recommend joining a stretching class.

 

 

ウイルス拡散防止のためにはとても大事な外出制限ですが、私たちの身体もなまってしまいがち。一体どんな影響があるのでしょうか…?

 

文:行宗あお子

 

今回のコロナウイルス対策は、私たちが未だかつて経験したことのない、大規模かつ長期的なものでしたね。厳しい行動制限が、大人だけでなく子供達の身体にも影響したのではないでしょうか?懸念される点は以下の4つです。

1 運動不足  

2 ストレス(生活リズムの乱れ、自由の制限、自分時間の減少、混沌とした状況などなど) 

3 日を浴びる時間の減少

4 過度な除菌、消毒(今回のコロナ対策の様に一日に何度もアルコール消毒をするなど)

 

この4つによって、身体に起きるマイナス要素は・・・

A 自律神経の乱れ  

B 腸内環境の悪化 

C 免疫力の低下 

D 筋力の低下

 

等、沢山考えられます。どれも、悪化してしまうと改善するには時間を要しますが、対策は難しくありません。私が考える最も効果的な対策は、

『腸内常在菌を元気にする!』ことです。

 

善玉菌を摂ると良いというのは聞いたことがあると思いますが、善玉菌は食べるだけではなかなか増やせないのです。まずは“菌が繁殖しやすい環境”を整えてあげることが大切です。方法は大きく2種類あります。

 

1 善玉菌の栄養を摂る

プレバイオティクスと呼ばれる菌の餌になるものを積極的に摂りましょう。

オリゴ糖、食物繊維、発酵食品

✕抗生物質、防腐剤を多く含む食品、砂糖、アルコール、過度な除菌消毒

 

2 体温を上げる

手作りヨーグルトを作るとき、発酵に適した温度は40~45℃ですよね。腸内(体内)温度も、38~40℃が理想的です。となると、表層体温は37℃位になります。

 

単に「冷やさない」だけではなく、積極的に体の中(腸)を温める方法は以下の通り。

・  温かい物を摂る(冷たい物はなるべく摂らない)

・  筋肉を動かす…特に全身の70%の筋肉がある下半身や褐色脂肪細胞がある肩甲周りの運動、美しい姿勢を保つことなどが効果的です。

・  質の良い睡眠をとる

 

菌に栄養を与えて温めてあげると、菌が増えて、免疫力のUP、幸せホルモン(セロトニン)や快眠ホルモン(メラトニン)の増加、自律神経バランスの改善、血流の改善、アレルギーの緩和、ストレス耐性がつく、デトックス、美肌ダイエット効果、などなど嬉しいことが沢山!

 

更にビタミンDを多く含む食品(イワシ、サンマ、鮭、干しシイタケ、きくらげなど)を摂取する、今あるものや元気でいられることに感謝する、なども健康に効果的です。

 

最後に、多くの筋肉を動かせるお得なエクササイズを紹介します。それは何といってもスクワットです!あまりに有名なエクササイズですが、股関節は体で一番大きな関節なので、ここを上手に動かすことが出来ると、一度に沢山の筋肉を使えますよ。

 

脚を腰幅に開き、踵の真ん中で床を押します。膝ではなく股関節を折り曲げてお尻を後に引き、反り腰にならないよう気を付けながら、下がれるところまで下がります。肩は楽にして、おへそが凹むのを感じてみましょう。そして膝をつま先と同じ方向(内側に入らないよう)に向け、踵の真中で床を押して立ち上がります。ポイントは膝の向きと重心。慣れるまでは難しいかもしれませんが、上手になると、お尻と内腿が引き締まりますよ!

また、普段のしゃがむ動作の時にも応用してもらえれば、骨盤のゆがみにも効果的です!

 

文字だけでの説明では解りづらいと思うので、ご興味のある方は是非ストレッチのクラスにも、ご参加ください。

 

About the Author

Aoko is the mother of a 3-year-old boy. She has worked as an instructor, esthetician, pressure trainer, and fasting seminar lecturer, and is currently engaged in stretching workshops and diet seminars. A lifetime health enthusiast, since having her son, she is studying further for the health and happiness of her family.

ホットスタジオでインストラクター、エステテイシャン、加圧トレーナー、ファスティングセミナー講師を経験して、現在はひめままバンコク等でストレッチのワークショップ、ダイエットセミナーなどの活動をしている3歳男児の母です。元々健康オタクでしたが、息子を授かり、家族の健康と幸せのために、更に勉強中です。


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