Have you ever heard that our gut is like our body’s second brain? While there’s plenty of scientific evidence to back this up, there are plenty of things you can eat and drink to boost your gut health, thus increasing your overall physical and mental health as well. And, we’re in luck as it’s summertime, so the foods we need to be consuming are in abundance.
Let’s start the list off with something easy that we all love – chocolate! Even if you’re already taking probiotic pills (which is incredible), chocolate is an easy and delicious way to get your pre and probiotic needs met. Cocoa is a natural prebiotic that can change the balance of microorganisms in your gut. You do want to be sticking with dark chocolates here, but they are just as delicious as the other varieties, only they pack so many more health benefits. Dark chocolate also creates short-chain fatty acids as it’s metabolized, so it packs an additional benefit of making you feel full longer.
Not only is kombucha an extremely effective way to boost gut health, if you enjoy the taste of it, brewing your own can quickly become a fun and enriching hobby. Not only is kombucha a probiotic, but it is also incredibly rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants have a ton of anti-aging benefits as well as staving off certain types of cancers. In addition, some studies have shown that kombucha may help heart health by lowering harmful cholesterol levels in the body.
3. Fiber’s Your Friend
Eating a diet high in fiber benefits your gut health in many, many ways. Foods that are high in fiber like artichokes, lentils, lima, and black beans, almonds, and apples are a great addition to your diet. Even better is if you consume an entirely plant-based diet which will heal your gut very quickly, and the benefits are felt almost immediately. Fiber also helps prevent weight gain, diabetes, and heart disease, so it’s a win-win-win.
4. Friendly Ferments
Just like the benefits of kombucha, you want to make fermented foods your friend for the same reason. Kimchi, for example, is rich in probiotics, which really helps keep things moving in your digestive system. Kimchi is especially beneficial for people suffering from bowel-related issues like irritable bowel syndrome, leaky gut, or any inflammation. Sauerkraut is another fermented food that you should add to your food rotation. It’s easy to incorporate kraut with almost any meat, and it goes great on sandwiches and even a baked potato. Start incorporating fermented foods immediately, and you’ll see a marked increase in overall gut health.
Ah, the benefits of collagen are so immense you can write an entire article about it on its own. Not only does it benefit you on a superficial level – it gives you strong teeth, beautiful hair, and glowing skin – it’s packing a serious gut health punch as well. Collagen is one of the most important proteins in our body; in fact, it’s the literal glue holding it all together. So getting collagen on a daily basis is not only beneficial to the gut, but it also slows down the aging process as well (both internally and externally). Boost your collagen intake by adding it to soups, smoothies, homemade dressings, etc. Most collagen brands are entirely water-soluble and tasteless, so don’t worry about your smoothie taking on a funny taste.
6. Coconut Oil
We all know that Coconut Oil really had its moment a few years ago, but it still deserves to be in the limelight. Coconut oil is a medium-chain fatty acid, meaning it helps fuel your brain and burn fat. Coconut oil is also antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal, so its benefits extend far beyond your gut and the kitchen. It really shines for gut health for its ability to kill off any harmful bacteria that may be residing there. So, start incorporating it in your cooking as the oil you use to sauté, add it to smoothies, or for the truly daring, just eat a spoonful.
There are so many easy ways that are already living in our pantries and refrigerators to heal our gut. But, as they say, pay the farmer now or the doctor later. So, start incorporating these gut-healing foods into your diet and stick with them for years to come; you have nothing to lose, only health and longevity to gain.
Article Submitted By Community Writer