The health of our gut is critical to overall health. The gut can be thought of as the system that drives every other major system in our bodies. There is research that shows the health of our gut not only keeps our digestive system moving but it also regulates our emotions, our mood and our immune system. With such a big responsibility, it makes sense that we focus on keeping the gut healthy by eating the best foods for it.
The gut doesn't know foods. All it knows is when the digestive system is started because we are chewing something, it will receive something that it needs to process and extract nutrients and waste. As long as everything is working properly, the digestive process will result in a bowel movement at least once a day.
When things aren't working properly, constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, fatigue, lack of energy, brain fog, moodiness, skin rashes, abdominal pain, anxiety, frequent belching or stomach gurgling are just a few of the many side effects.
One way you can overcome these embarrassing symptoms is by eating foods that support a healthy gut. Not sure where to start? I am here to help!
I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist teaching people just like you how to stop suffering from the embarrassing effects of an unhealthy gut so you can get back to living. The TAKE YOUR LIFE BACK coaching call is a FREE 30 minute call where we will talk about your specific symptoms and start creating a plan on how to heal your gut using the Simply Great Gut Health program.
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It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE.
If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now.
If it is a fit, we can take the next step and get you started on the path to healing your gut.
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In order to create gut healthy dinners there are 7 core ingredients to always have on hand. Once I list them for you, I'll share fast and easy recipes the whole family will love.
7 NUTRIENTS FOR GUT HEALTHY DINNERS
Now this may be counter intuitive because when we think of fiber, we think of having hard dense stools. But when we are eating enough fiber, we have at least one daily bowel movement. Each meal should have 8 to 12 grams of fiber. Fiber is important to keep the digestive tract healthy and promote bowel movements. Fiber is also necessary for eliminating waste.
An amino acid, l-glutamine is the most abundant non-essential amino acid in the body. It is an ingredient that is necessary to help keep the large and small intestines healthy.
PROBIOTICS AND PREBIOTICS
Probiotics are the good bacteria that helps fight pathogens, produce Vitamin B12 and K and assists in food breakdown. Prebiotics are the food for the probiotics to ensure they are healthy enough to take care of our body.
While most often thought of for eye health, Vitamin A is key to maintaining tolerance across the immune system. The gut influences our immune system health. By getting enough Vitamin A in our diet, our gut health and immune system stay strong. (Source: Clinical Education)
Zinc is mostly thought of as a immune health ingredient. But zinc is also very beneficial for the gut. In fact, zinc may help limit leaky gut since it helps to tighten the gaps that occur in the intestinal walls. The gaps let undigested food, bacteria and waste to enter the bloodstream, which is what is called leaky gut. (Source: Healthline)
Quercetin is a naturally occurring flavonoid with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer properties. Quercetin has been shown to enhance intestinal barrier functions which helps control intestinal inflammation by inhibiting histamine release. (Source: Natural Medicine Journal)
Now that we've learned about the key nutrients to support a healthy gut, let's look at the foods that contain each of them and recipes.
7 INGREDIENTS FOR GUT HEALTHY DINNERS
Spinach is the big winner! It contains Vitamin A, Vitamin K, L-glutamine, Zinc, Fiber and Quercetin. Whenever you are cooking a casserole, soup, stir fry or making a smoothie, even if the recipe does not call for it, add spinach. You can use frozen organic chopped spinach so you aren't constantly shopping for fresh. This is one of the best ingredients to use for a health gut.
Legumes, which you probably knew was coming. Beans and lentils are affordable and great sources of L-glutamine, Fiber and Zinc.
Pickles, miso, tempeh, kimchi sauerkraut are all good sources of probiotics. Prebiotic foods are garlic, leeks, onions, asparagus, barley, oats, flaxseed and apples.
Quercetin containing foods are apples, grapes, berries, broccoli, citrus fruits and cherries. With so many wonderful and healthy ingredients, I can't wait to look at some recipes.
Mashed White Beans with Spinach, Garlic and Lemon a perfect vegetarian main dish.
Kimchi Fried Rice With Broccoli and Smoky Tempeh with yummy spices to tie it all together.
Barley Asparagus and Pea Salad for lunch or dinner.
Broccoli Salad with Apples, Walnuts and Cranberries. Grapes would work great in this recipe if you don't like cranberries.
Vegan Lentil Burgers for a fun dinner or lunch.
I hope this article on recipes using 7 gut health ingredients inspires you to learn more about how food can be medicine. If we give our body whole clean foods, it will take care of us.
Do you think you will try any of the above? Let me know by leaving me a comment below.