Maintaining and improving your gut health doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on various supplements. Although they work, eating a few certain foods can bring a massive boost to the wellbeing of your gut. Here are 5 foods we love to eat to keep our gut happy.
Fermented foods are getting a lot of attention recently, and there is good reason behind this. Foods such as yoghurt, sauerkraut, kefir, kombucha, kimchi and miso paste are full of good bacteria, rich in probiotics, may help aid digestion and boost your immunity. Some research has also shown that fermented foods can help us to maintain a healthy weight.
Fish, particularly salmon, is full of fatty acids, mainly omega 3, which can help the valuable probiotics to survive and continue their vital work. If you’re a vegetarian, vegan or just don’t like fish, it’s worth taking an omega 3 supplement (or vegetarian/vegan equivalent) to reap all its benefits which extend beyond the gut.
For thousands of years, people have used chamomile medicinally, and studies suggest it does offer benefits. In terms of the gut, chamomile can act as a digestive relaxant and relieve cramping and constipation. It can also calm bloating, indigestion and gas. Having a chamomile tea is probably the best way to add it to your diet – having a cup before bed can also help you drift off to sleep quicker as well as soothing your gut.
Popular in Asian medicine to treat stomach problems and a popular option to relieve nausea and vomiting in pregnancy, ginger can help calm your gut – plus, it tastes delicious. Grate some into your mix when making a cake, add to curries and stir-fries or place the peel in hot water for a fresh ginger tea.
A common choice these days, a vegetarian or vegan diet will contain a large amount of prebiotic fibre and studies have found those on a vegetarian diet have a significant difference in gut microbiomes when compared to meat-eaters. You don’t have to go full vegetarian or vegan just have a few vegetarian meals each week or decrease the amount of meat and increase the vegetables.
Not a food to add to your diet but one to avoid, excess added sugar and sweeteners can cause an imbalance of microbes in the gut. Research has found that diets high in sugar and/or sweeteners can affect the microbiome and affect gut flora which may negatively impact blood glucose levels. We’re not suggesting cutting out altogether (who doesn’t love a sweet treat?), just be mindful not to consume too much sugar or try to have the odd day off.
Maintaining a healthy gut can promote better overall health and increase immune function. Adding the above foods to a healthy diet can help to improve your gut health. If you would like to find out how healthy your gut is, Functional Gut test analyses key biomarkers called short-chain fatty acids to provide you with a health analysis and personal dietary and lifestyle advice on how to improve your gut health. You can shop Functional Gut here