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Breaking down foods to allow the body to absorb nutrients, the digestive system in the human body is kind of amazing! Not only does the gut impact nutrition, but it also relates to the immune system, mental health, and general well-being. Taking good care of yourself means being aware of the various foods and liquids that go into the body, and also learning how to treat the digestive system right! 

World Digestive Health Day is here to act as a reminder of the important role that digestive health plays for the body and the entire person!

History of World Digestive Health Day

World Digestive Health Day was founded in 2004 through the efforts of the folks at the World Gastroenterology Organization (WGO). The event was established in honor of the 45th anniversary of the creation of the WGO, which took place on May 29, 1958. The idea behind the day is to increase knowledge and understanding about digestive health through this campaign, encouraging increased public awareness and providing more accessible information.

Each year, the sponsors and organizers of World Digestive Health Day provide a theme that helps to pinpoint a specific topic related to the observance of the day. Some of the themes of past events have included:

  • Digestive Health: Make It a Priority (2024)
  • Your Digestive Health: A Healthy Gut from the Start (2023)
  • Colorectal Cancer Prevention: Getting Back on Track (2022)
  • Gut Microbiome – A Global Perspective (2020)

How to Celebrate World Digestive Health Day

Improve Your Digestive Health

The inner workings of the gut can be complicated and require a lot of balance. But even though the digestive system may be complicated, for most people in the western world there are a few simple things that can be done to make improvements. Consider talking to your doctor about implementing some of these ideas in honor of World Digestive Health Day:

  • Ingest Probiotics. An important factor in keeping the gut microbiome balanced is the existence of this good bacteria, which can be found in certain foods like yogurts, kimchi, kombucha, sauerkraut, and many others 
  • Drink Plenty of Water. Proper hydration is vital for the digestive system to be able to absorb nutrients properly 
  • Eat Fiber Rich Foods. Most adults need at least 25-30 grams of fiber per day, about 1/4 of which needs to be soluble fiber
  • Get Enough Exercise and Rest. Many people don’t realize the impact that appropriate movement and sleep can make on the digestive system 

Attend a World Digestive Health Day Event 

Medical professionals can observe World Digestive Health Day by attending the various events, forums, webinars, continuous education and other learning opportunities that are scheduled in honor of the day. For a list of events, check out the WGO website.  

Read Some Books on Digestive Health

In celebration of World Digestive Health Day, those who are interested in learning more can head to the library or a local bookstore and pick up a copy of one of these or other books on the topic:

  • The Mind-Gut Connection by Emeran Mayer, MD
  • Why Has Nobody Told Me This Before? by Dr. Julie Smith
  • The Good Gut by Justin & Erica Sonnenburg, PhDs
  • Gut: The Inside Story of Our Body’s Most Underrated Organ by Giulia Enders 

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