Apples: An Apple A Day Keeps The Doc Away
Maybe the easiest fruit to find, apples are an excellent dietary addition.
They are high in fiber. And, a 2014 study in Food Chemistry found green apples boost good gut bacteria.
Eat apples raw as a snack. Or you can even enjoy them stewed. Stewed apples have been found to be good for your microbiome, and they may also help to heal your gut.
When buying apples, choose organic if possible because apples are on the Environmental Working Groups Dirty Dozen list of produce with the most pesticides.
Types Of Food For Gut Health
Diet and gut health appear to be very closely linked. Avoiding processed foods, high fat foods, and foods high in refined sugars is likely important for maintaining a healthy microbiome, as these foods may promote the growth of damaging bacteria.
There are also foods you can eat that actively promote the growth of beneficial bacteria, contributing to your overall health. These foods include:
Taking Probiotic And Prebiotic Supplements
Modern day diets often contain high levels of alcohol, caffeine and sugar, which all take their toll on our healthy gut bacteria. Often the good bacteria are squashed down by our poor diets and this means the harmful species of bacteria take hold creating gut and health issues. A daily biotic supplement along with dietary changes like those suggested above can help replenish the bodys good bacteria that may be lost as a result of lifestyle choices.
Biotic LGG contains two strains of naturally occurring bacteria found in different parts of the gut, both of which are paramount for optimised digestive health. Your bodys own bacteria can also become depleted by external factors such as stress and environmental changes so our LGG Biotic can help to provide a valuable top-up.
Our gut health bundle contains a pack of biotic LGG and a multivitamin that contains all nutrients your body needs to go with your healthy diet. Made to keep your stomach happy and body active, the gut health bundle is perfect for those looking to replenish their body.
Supplements, however, dont replace a healthy diet. You should be including nutrient-dense foods into your diet wherever you can, then taking the supplements alongside.
Start adding the above foods to your diet and reap the benefits, your gut will be thankful and youll feel better for it.
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The 19 Best Prebiotic Foods You Should Eat
Prebiotics are a form of dietary fiber that feed the friendly bacteria in your gut.
This allows your gut bacteria to produce nutrients for your colon cells, which leads to a healthier digestive system (
Some of these nutrients include short-chain fatty acids like butyrate, acetate, and propionate .
These fatty acids can be absorbed into your bloodstream and improve metabolic health .
However, prebiotics shouldnt be confused with probiotics.
Probiotics are live bacteria found in certain foods or supplements. To learn more about the difference between prebiotics and probiotics, read this article.
Read on to explore 19 healthy prebiotic foods to add to your grocery list.
Chicory root comes from a flowering plant in the dandelion family. Its popular for its coffee-like flavor and has historically been used in cooking and medicine.
Its also a great source of prebiotics.
Approximately 68% of chicory root fiber comes from the prebiotic fiber inulin .
It may also help prevent diabetes by raising levels of adiponectin, a protein that helps control blood glucose levels .
Additionally, chicory root is high in antioxidant compounds that may protect your liver from oxidative damage .
Chicory root is often used as a caffeine-free coffee replacement. Its inulin fiber promotes friendly gut bacteria, reduces constipation, and can help control glucose levels.
They contain 1.92 grams of fiber per 1 cup .
Kefir: One Of The Most Probiotic
While this cultured product is traditionally made with dairy, its coconut or water-based counterparts can be even better and keep you free from the controversial health effects of cows milk.
You may be able to find dairy-free kefir in your area. Or you can order kefir starters and make it yourself using coconut water or nut milk. Just be sure that you dont oversweeten it because sugar can be bad for your microbiome.
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Eating Right For Your Microbes
What you eat isn’t just nutrition for you, it also feeds the trillions of bacteria that live in your gut.
Every person is different, but if you want to improve your digestion, lose weight or look after your general health, there are some broad principles that apply to all.
Easy tips for gut health
- Eat a wide range of plant-based foods. A healthy gut has a diverse community of microbes, each of which prefers different foods.
- Eat more fibre. Most people eat less than they should. Fruit, vegetables, pulses, nuts and wholegrains feed healthy bacteria.
- Avoid highly processed foods. They often contain ingredients that either suppress ‘good’ bacteria or increase ‘bad’ bacteria.
- Probiotic foods, such as live yoghurt, might encourage more microbes to grow. Eat them if you enjoy them.
- Choose extra-virgin olive oil over other fats when you can. It contains the highest number of microbe-friendly polyphenols.
- Antibiotics kill good bacteria as well as bad. If you need antibiotics, make sure you eat lots of foods that boost your microbes afterwards.
- If your diet is low in fibre, a sudden increase can cause wind and bloating. This is less likely if you make gradual changes and drink extra water.
Probiotics vs prebiotics
Whats The Difference Between Prebiotics And Probiotics
Think of prebiotics as the food that feeds probiotics. Both are essential for good gut health. Pre- and probiotics are found in many foods and beverages, and can be bought as supplements. Each works in a different way. Prebiotics are found mostly in high-fiber foods, and probiotics abound in fermented foods and beverages.
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Eat Some Ginger To Improve Digestion
A traditional Asian remedy for tummy aches and nausea and a favorite condiment used in Japanese cuisine, ginger is also a powerful anti-inflammatory, making it another good food for digestion and a natural digestive aid.
And theres research to back up gingers benefits: Ginger is a food that helps digestion by speeding up the process that moves food from the stomach into the upper small intestine. A January 2020 review published in the journal Nutrients noted that several studies found ginger was associated with improved digestive functioning. It also pointed to studies that found ginger reduced nausea, motion sickness, and the risk of colon cancer.
Don’t Take Antibiotics Unless You Really Need To
There are certainly times when antibiotics are necessary, but you shouldnt be taking them if you dont really need them. .
Antibiotics can affect the gut microbiome, Dr. Boxer says, explaining that they can eliminate or change existing populations of microorganisms. If antibiotics are a necessity, he recommends eating probiotic-rich foods, like kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, yogurt, and kombucha, or taking a probiotic supplement to help counter the damage the antibiotics might cause. While there are hundreds of these supplements on the market, Dr. Boxer says one isnt necessarily better than another, but he recommends choosing a large name brand versus a small, expensive one online. For the best advice, ask your doctor which over-the-counter probiotic they suggest, or if simply eating more probiotic foods will do the trick.
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And The Food To Avoid
Foods that negatively impact your gut health tend to be high in sugar, which causes inflammation of the gut lining. Artificial sweeteners can cause a change in the gut microbe population and also lead to glucose intolerance. Hyper processed foods lead to gut inflammation as they contain high sugar, trans-fats, additives, and low fiber levels. None of these types of food helps gut health.
Saturated fats are also bad for gut health. For example, diets rich in high-fat content meat or butter can decrease good bacteria in the gut. Likewise, high levels of dairy foods can change the constitution of your good gut bacteria and lead to increased inflammation.
Alcohol is known to cause an imbalance in healthy gut bacteria, particularly in those with high consumption levels. However, research shows it is dependent on the type of alcohol because moderate consumption of red wine is beneficial for gut health in moderation.
Eat More Whole Grains Nuts Load Up On Veggies Beans And Fresh Fruits
Here is yet another reason to eat fresh, whole foods. Barley, oats, quinoa, bulger, and other whole grains have fiber that we need to bulk up our intestines and help things to move through.
Whole grains then become a type of feed for the bacteria inhabiting the microbiome. It may sound strange that we have all these minute bacteria floating around in there, but they keep things running smoothly.
Eating more whole grains has been shown to increase the types and numbers of bacteria in our gut. The same is true of nuts, so pick up a variety of walnuts, pecans, pistachios or almonds, remembering that a serving is what fits into the palm of your hand.
Whole, fresh vegetables, beans and legumes, and a variety of fresh fruits serve as nutrition for the bacteria in our gut. Shop your local farmers market for fresh, whole foods in season and prepare your microbiome for your locale.
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Diet And Gut Bacteria
Right from the start when we drink either breast milk or baby formula, our diet affects our gut bacteria.
For instance, breastfed babies tend to have better immunity and more diverse gut bacteria than those who are fed formula.
Vegetarian and vegan diets have also been found to be associated with better bacteria diversity than a non-vegetarian diet.
Eating probiotics and prebiotics, such as fermented foods, in appropriate doses have also been seen to cause specific changes in the structure of our gut microbiota and benefit our health.2
Eat A Wide Variety Of Foods
Variety isnt only the spice of life, its also what keeps your gut healthy. Data from the American Gut Project suggests that people who consume at least 30 different types of plants each week have a stronger, more diverse gut microbiome than those who eat fewer than 10 plants per week, Nielsen says. This matters because your intestinal bacteria essentially eat what you eat, so consuming a colorful and diversified diet means your gut will also have a greater diversity of nutrients available to them. The different bacteria, with different metabolisms, will then have the food they require, she says. Thirty might sound overwhelming at first, but consider something like a bowl of oats with blueberries, hemp hearts, soy milk, and cinnamon. In that one dish, youre getting five plant foods!
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How Eating These 16 Foods Could Help Improve Your Gut Health
The secret to good gut health isnt about following a complicated diet or shopping in specialty stores. It all starts with the foods we put into our bodies. These 16 everyday foods contain a variety of fibres that can help nurture good gut bacteria and keep your digestive system healthy. Lets dig in! This gallery is brought to you by Sanitarium The Health Food Company providing you and your family with nutritious breakfast options since 1898. Eat well. Live well.
Kimchi: A Spicy Alternative To Sauerkraut
A Korean alternative to sauerkraut, kimchi is also fermented cabbage made with several different spices and ingredients. Common ingredients include salt, chili powder, onion, garlic, and ginger. Its sometimes traditionally made with a fish stock base, but its easy to find a plant-based version in stores or to make your own at home.
A 2014 study in the Journal of Medicinal Food confirmed that kimchi is high in probiotics, and is an excellent fuel for gut health. Other studies have shown that kimchi can help to fight cancer, obesity, aging, and constipation, while also contributing to your immune system, skin health, and brain health.
Eat kimchi in bowls, wraps, or as a seasoning on just about anything.
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Ways To Improve Your Gut Bacteria Based On Science
There are around 40 trillion bacteria in your body, most of which are found in your gut.
Collectively, they are known as your gut microbiome, and theyre incredibly important for overall health. However, certain types of bacteria in your intestines can also contribute to many diseases.
Many factors, including the foods you eat, can impact the type of bacteria found in your digestive tract.
Here are 9 science-based ways to improve your gut bacteria.
Other Surprising Gut Health Foods
At the end of the day, you’ll always see the most benefits from eating a balanced diet rich in whole fruits and vegetables, but here are a few other foods you can add to help support your digestive health.
1. Ginger and Ginger Beer
Traditionally brewed ginger or root beer is prepared similarly to kombucha a symbiotic colony of yeast and lactobacillus bacteria aids in fermenting the ginger, sugar, and water into a delicious carbonated beverage.
Ginger has been used for generations as a natural home remedy for soothing digestive upsets, and thanks to modern scientific studies we nows know that ginger has various therapeutic effects. Ginger contains antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immuno-supportive compounds .
So it’s no doubt this probiotic-filled soda may be a better choice over other alternative sweet carbonated beverages. That being said, always be sure to read the label, even ginger beers can contain unwanted excess sugars aim to find a brand with as little sugar as possible, or like any food that’s a bit sweet, aim for moderation!
Ginger beer and ginger ale are used interchangeably to refer to a fermented ginger soda ginger beer tends to be stronger in flavor.
2. Sprouted Grains
Sprouted grains refer to grain or seed that has been first soaked in water, and then kept damp for a specific amount of time until it begins to sprout!
3. Bone Broth
Bone broths can be a wonderful option to soothe upset stomach and lessen the burden of digestion on your body.
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Follow These 5 Steps To Improve Your Gut Health
Given that we all want to live long, vibrant lives, lets dive into simple ways to improve your gut microbiome.
What Is Gut Health
Maintaining a good balance of bacteria in your gut is important to your overall health. Scientists have learned that the microbes that colonize your gut biome can have a positive or negative impact on your digestive, immune and endocrine systems your skin your brain and even your mental health. People with a wide variety of good bacteria in their gut tend to be healthier. And a healthy gut includes a variety of prebiotic and probiotic organisms.
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Best Foods For Gut Health
When people ask us how to lose their gut, we tell them one thing: Don’t lose it! Just make the bacteria in it healthier by eating more fermented foods and good bacteria. Then you’ll lose the weightand live a happier and healthier life.
A healthy gut microbiome is essential not only to properly break down the foods you’re eating, but also for nutrient absorption and toxin eliminationmeaning that when your gut flora is out of whack, serious problems can ensue. Among those problems are bloating, inflammation, various skin issues like acneeven diabetes, poor sleep, lower levels of happiness, and obesity are tied to the health state of your gut.
So what’s the key to help ensure you have a healthy gut? Focus on a diet rich in probiotic and fermented foods that promote the proliferation of good bacteria. Bonus! All the foods that promote a healthy gut are also waist-friendly. And to discover even more stomach-slimming tips, check out these 55 Best Ways to Boost Your Metabolism! Here’s to giving your digestive system a healthy makeover.
Healthy Gut Happy Human
In most cases, supplements arent needed to support a healthy gut. They can help, but what you eat is by far the most important factor.
New York Times columnist Jane Brody sums up good gut-health advice, saying: People interested in fostering a health-promoting array of gut microorganisms should consider shifting from a diet heavily based on meats, carbohydrates and processed foods to one that emphasizes plants.
If you aim to follow the recommendations in this article, youll be supporting better bathroom habits, a healthier immune response and even a better, brighter mood. Take care of your gut, and it will give you the TLC you need.
Let us know in the comments:
- Do you have any tips for good gut health?
- What do you think are the best foods for gut health?
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