Are you feeling anxious? Do you suffer from joint pain? Are you dealing with ache or eczema? Do you feel bloated after meals? A simple gut health diet might be exactly what you need.
That’s because all of these issues are linked back to your gut. And the types of foods you eat is one of the main things you can do to enhance your health, and get rid of symptoms for good.
What to Eat For Good Gut Health
Good gut health starts with eating the right foods to repair and maintain your gut.
Eating the right foods and from the right sources is the quickest most impactful way you can increase your energy, get rid of fatigue, persistent weight gain, skin and digestive issues.
There are certain foods that are really good for your gut and have a healing effect, and there are some that are bad for your gut, as I’ve mentioned below.
For example, eating certain foods like gluten can cause inflammation in the gut lining of some people.
Similarly, fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, cultured kefir and kombucha are generally good for the gut as they nourish the gut microbiome, however they may not sit well with people who have histamine intolerances.
To get you started simply and easily, let’s take a look at what a good gut health diet might include and exclude.
Gut Health Breakfast
Foods to exclude: A conventional Western breakfast of highly processed carbohydrates like bread and cereals that come from conventional crops sprayed with glyphosate, an antibacterial weed killer. All these foods wreak havoc in your gut.
Foods to include: aim to include nutrient-dense vegetables like spinach and broccoli, plenty of good quality fats like avocado, coconut and salmon, and high-quality grass fed proteins, like free range eggs, wild caught fish like sardines, and grass fed meats. If you’re on the go in the morning, you could use these types of foods to create a gut health smoothie, or a gut health juice.
What about if you’re skipping breakfast and still want to heal the gut?
Gut Health and Fasting
If you’re skipping breakfast, or dinner for that matter, but want to heal the gut, you need more emphasis on including the greatest variety of gut healthy foods in the remaining meals you eat during the day.
You want to ensure that you consume enough vitamins, minerals, fibre and macronutrients to keep your gut bacteria fueled up and happy, so you can maintain your energy levels, mental focus, mood and a healthy weight.
See below for some ideas.
Gut Health – Best Vegetables
The vegetables that promote good gut health and healing are those that are prebiotic rich and sourced from biodynamic soil.
Most vegetables these days are sprayed with chemicals and lack the biodiversity our gut needs. That’s why when choosing the best vegetables for gut health it’s essential you find prebiotic rich, preferable organic sourced ones that are prebiotic fibre-rich that heal the gut.
The highest nutrient vegetables include green leafy vegetables like broccoli, kale, spinach and cauliflower, along with garlic, leeks, onions, asparagus and Jerusalem artichokes.
While some of these vegetables are healing for many people, they may not be suitable for people who react to fermentable carbohydrates (FODMAPs) or more serious gut issues.
Choosing veggies that are good for the gut is very individualised, so what about gut friendly meals, overall?
Gut Health Meals
There’s a lot of new ready to go and pre-packaged meals that are labeled gut friendly but are they really? How do you choose between what’s actually good for your gut and the marketing hype?
What to include: natural, organic whole foods coming from soil that is biodynamic, so you get the most nutrients you can from the plant, as well as the medicinal benefit from the soil, for your gut.
When putting together your gut healthy meals, try and remember to include natural prebiotics foods that feed the good bacteria in your gut to grow. Examples include jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, garlic, onion and leeks.
What to avoid: avoid foods that cause inflammation, irritate the gut and lead to leaky gut and autoimmune reactions is also key.
While this is highly individualised, the common culprits include most processed and packaged foods, and may also include at least one of these: wheat, gluten, dairy, peanuts, eggs, sugars, alcohol, caffeine and/or nightshade vegetables.
This is a short list and everyone is different so an individualised nutritional approach is important when it comes to the best gut health meals specific for you.
A sample lunch for good gut health could include cooked chicken with a green salad, some avocado, vinaigrette dressing and a small bowl of sweet potato soup.
Gut Healing Dinner Recipes
Putting together a gut healing dinner can be difficult if you have limited time and are unfamiliar with the exact carbohydrates, fats and proteins that will give you the variety and right balance of vitamins and minerals you need to heal your gut.
So where do you start?
Here is my three-step process to choosing gut healthy meals:
- Choose prebiotic-rich foods that will nurture healthy gut bacteria. This includes leafy greens, lean organic proteins, some of the root vegetables and vegetables from the squash family to start with.
- Opt for low inflammatory foods. This is an individualised approach but some common foods to avoid include processed meats, breads, pasta, vegetable oils and sugar, but also food sensitivities with eggs, grains, yeast and gluten.
- Choose gut healing and repairing foods such as grass-fed bone broth, collagen and healthy fats such as avocado, fatty fish like mackerel, salmon and sardines.
Using this three-point system, it’s simpler to put together gut healing dinner recipes at any time of the day!
At first, eating for your gut can be tricky, but over time getting familiar with what works for you and makes you and your gut feel good will be a rewarding exercise by getting rid of your symptoms and in the longer run, minimising your chance of common autoimmune and neurological conditions.
“There’s more to life than feeling stressed, fatigued and overwhelmed and my job is to help, support and empower you to take back control.”
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