Ultimate Guide To A Healthy Gut!
One of the most trending topics in health right now is gut health. But what does it really mean to have a healthy gut? Nutritionist Kathleen Alleaume explains why gut health matters and the best ways to boost it.
What is gut health?
There are trillions of reasons to love our gut – in fact, over 10 trillion. That’s roughly the number of microbes living inside of us. These microbes cover every nook and cranny of our body; however, the largest population reside in our gut.
A healthy gut is inhabited by a diverse range of bacteria, many of which carry out vital roles to keep your health in tip-top condition. Lack of diversity in the gut microbiome can be a precursor to many health problems, including inflammation and poor nutrient absorption.
You are what you eat
What you eat isn’t just nutrition for you, it also helps to nourish the friendly gut microbes. Eating a healthy and balanced diet, mainly of whole foods is associated with a greater diversity in the gut flora.
Easy ways to build a better gut.
Enjoy probiotic-rich foods. Cultured and fermented foods naturally contain beneficial bacteria. Foods like kimchi, kombucha, kefir, miso, sauerkraut sourdough bread and natural yoghurt will help to inject more friendly bacteria into the gut.
Fill you plate with plant’s Plant-based diets are fibre-rich and a healthy gut requires lots of dietary fibres. Certain types of fibres, such as prebiotic fibres fuel the beneficial bacteria to help them survive and thrive. Foods rich in prebiotic fibre include garlic, onion, leek, asparagus, artichoke, prunes, Brussels sprouts, legumes and whole grains.
Choose extra-virgin olive oil. It contains the highest number of microbe-friendly polyphenols – bioactive nutrients that help stimulate a higher diversity of beneficial gut bacteria, enhancing their balance.
Rest and digest. Apart from what you eat, it’s important to be mindful as to how you eat. Focus on sitting and being present with your meals, mindfully chewing each mouthful, rather than eating on the go, or while distracted by a screen. Eating mindfully can have a positive effect on the breakdown of our food an absorption of nutrients and improve gastrointestinal function and wellbeing in general.
Try our gut-healthy recipes
Kathleen Alleaume (MSc) is a nutritionist and founder of The Right Balance