By: Kejal Sheth
The term “gut” refers specifically to the microorganisms living in your intestines. A person has about 300 to 500 different species of bacteria in their digestive tract. These gut microbes affect the way you store fat, how you balance levels of glucose in your blood, and how you respond to hormones that make you feel hungry or satiated. It is responsible for digestion, absorption of nutrients and elimination.
If you don’t maintain your gut, it can lead to obesity and other health issues in the later stages of life. It plays a role in certain diseases and in mental health.
In other words, the wellness of both your body and your brain depend on your gut health.
So we need to take good care of it. Start by eating foods that can repair and strengthen your gut lining. Also load up on sources of pre- and probiotics so you have plenty of the good bacteria.
Let’s look at how some of these powerful foods can help heal our gut and aid in digestion so we always feel good about ourselves.
Yoghurt, being a fermented food naturally contains lots of probiotics that strengthen the digestive system and help increase the good bacteria in the gut.
Asparagus works as a prebiotic: it contains high levels of the indigestible fibre inulin, which feeds healthy bacteria like bifidobacteria and lactobacilli. It has high level of Vitamin B and its antioxidants are inflammation-fighting. Asparagus should be eaten raw for maximum prebiotic effects.
Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain. Studies suggest that bromelain counters pain and inflammation throughout the body. It also works as a digestive aid helping to break down molecules from large food molecules into smaller ones. You can eat pineapples whole or by adding them in juices and smoothies.
Raw onions are a great source of prebiotics and contain quercetin which is a strong antioxidant. They also contain chromium which boosts insulin production and vitamin C which helps in making the immune system stronger. Dice onions and put them in salads, dressings and sauces.
Raw garlic is another excellent prebiotic food with high levels of insulin, which fuels the good bacteria in the gut. It is loaded with tons of nutrients like Allicin which is a powerful disease fighting substance created after garlic is crushed or chopped.
Ginger helps to calm and relax the stomach, relieve nausea, and alleviate gut ailments. Not only does it provide a natural source of vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, copper, and manganese, ginger also aids in digestion and helps prevent bloating.
Bone broth helps heal the lining of the gut, which in turn supports immune system function and a healthy inflammatory response. It contains a variety of minerals and healing compounds which fight inflammation and boost immune system.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar helps us break down and digest food by stimulating digestive juices and increasing stomach acid production.
It also has antiviral and antimicrobial properties; reducing growth of the bacteria we don’t want living in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. It also helps the body to get freed from excess yeast.
Incorporate these power foods for a healthy gut and a healthier life.