"Altogether, your gut is a huge chemical factory that helps to digest food, produce vitamins, regulate hormones, excrete toxins, produce healing compounds and keep your gut healthy," states author, speaker and medical professional Dr Mark Hayman (drhyman.com).

Maintaining a good balance between good and bad bacteria is as easy as changing the way you eat, and what you eat. Our intestinal flora consists of millions of bacteria and avoiding a hostile take over by bad bacteria, yeasts and parasites, you can even extend your life. Here are three foods that can help you change the environment in your gut and start to lose weight.

Eat healthy fats

The body needs good fats whether you're on a diet or not. Good fats help keep the gut itself healthy, thus creating a healthy environment for good gut flora to grow and multiply. Look for coconut oil, avocado oil, extra virgin olive oil, and good sources of omega 3 fatty acids.

Go easy on sugar

Yeast and Candida feed on sugar and can cause many problems. It's the stuff that causes yeast infections and other unsavoury inflammation that may be happening to your body without you even knowing about it. Rather go for fibre rich foods instead, because good bacteria loves the stuff. And literally, fibre sweeps the gut clean of toxins.

Eat more fermented foods

Foods like kimchi and sauerkraut are simple fermented cabbage foods that you can make at home. Because they are fermented, they keep very long. They are loaded with probiotics, are low fat and fibre rich. Supplement these great foods with good quality yoghurt, and a probiotic supplement, especially if you're on a course of antibiotics as the medication will not discriminate on which bacteria they kill when treating an infection.