There are many contributing factors that affect your gut health. Factors such as diet, food intolerances, lifestyle, hormones, sleep, stress and especially medications will affect the state of how your body digests and eliminates what you eat and drink.
Gut health issues are becoming more common, with symptoms such as bloating, IBS, inflammation, reflux and constipation affecting many people and impacting their quality of life.
To help support your digestive health, I've gathered my top tips on how to heal your gut naturally. The below information is based on researched studies as well as my own personal journey towards gut repair.
1. USE PROBIOTICS FOR GUT HEALTH
Probiotics are the live microorganisms (good bacteria) that reside in the gut. Probiotics support our immune system, aid digestion and assist with nutrient absorption into our bloodstream. Examples of gut healing foods that contain probiotics include kefir, pu erh tea, yoghurt, sauerkraut and kimchi. You may also want to try probiotic supplements. Our Healthy Chef Gut Collagen and Everyday Greens feature probiotics to help nourish the gut.
2. NOURISH YOUR BODY WITH PREBIOTICS
Prebiotics can be thought of as the fuel for probiotics to flourish, so that the microbiome has a balance of the right strains. Fresh fruits and vegetables are the best sources of prebiotics, and some good sources include citrus fruits, kiwi fruit, pear and leafy greens. Our Organic Superfood is bursting with prebiotics and has been made with the goodness of 10 x organic fruits and vegetables with a great berry taste.
For a uniquely low FODMAP prebiotic, try Healthy Chef Probiotic + Prebiotic for a dual-action formula that both nourishes the microbiome with probiotics and fuels them.
3. DRINK WATER + TEATry to drink 2 litres of filtered water and fluids daily as this assists with gut repair. Water is important in the elimination of toxins and waste as well as promoting peristalsis. Hydration is also important for the gut lining and the mucosa of the intestine: swap soft drinks and fruit juices for herbal teas or lemon-infused water. One of my favourite teas for digestive health is Healthy Chef Digest Tea - it's wonderful to relieve bloating and soothe the digestive system.
If you suffer from constipation or slow motility, Studies from the European Journal of Pharmacology report that green tea is beneficial in reducing gastrointestinal disorders. The caffeine in green tea as well as Matcha Green Tea can also act as a mild laxative to get the bowels moving in the morning.
4. REMOVE INFLAMMATORY FOODS
Removing gluten, alcohol, processed foods and refined sugar reduces overall inflammation and stress on the body, which helps with gastrointestinal healing.
Processed foods have limited nutrient density and likely contain added fillers, preservatives, artificial sweeteners or flavours which can exacerbate digestive symptoms and inflammation.
5. FALL IN LOVE WITH KIWI FRUIT
Kiwi Fruit is an effective remedy for constipation and is extremely soothing and healing for the gastrointestinal tract. According to Monash University, approximately 1 in 7 people suffer from constipation. A 4-week study showed that eating 2 kiwi fruit per day over 4 weeks was an effective treatment to increase bowel motility. Kiwi fruit is high in soluble fibre and vitamin C as well as being low FODMAP.
6. NOURISH WITH COLLAGEN
Collagen is rich in glycine and glutamine which are 2 amino acids that are beneficial for promoting digestion and supporting a healthy gut barrier.
Studies have found that in patients with inflammatory bowel disease, serum concentrations of collagen are decreased. Because the amino acids in collagen build the tissue that lines the colon and GI tract, supplementing with collagen can help treat gastrointestinal symptoms and disorders, including leaky gut syndrome, IBS, acid reflux, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
"I love to mix 2 tablespoons of Healthy Chef Gut Collagen in water daily. Gut Collagen is a powerhouse of wild marine collagen, L-glutamine, magnesium, and probiotics to support healthy digestion."
7. ENJOY A GLASS OF GREEN JUICE
Green vegetables are rich in living phytonutrients and are highly alkalising, assisting your body to cleanse, heal and nourish in a perfect environment. They can also assist the body to detoxify.
Enjoy Healthy Chef Everyday Greens daily, a superfood blend containing cold-pressed greens, probiotics and L-Glutamine to support digestive health.
8. EXERCISE DAILY
Regular exercise helps to make you happy, lowers body fat and cholesterol, boosts your immune system, increases your energy, helps to stimulate gut function and assist motility. Studies suggest that exercise can also help improve gut microbiota.
Experts report that physical inactivity is one of the major risk factors for constipation, so moving your body is essential for moving your bowels.
9. ENJOY WARMING BROTHS
Warming, nourishing broths and soups which are gentle on your digestion. Broths such as chicken soup or bone broth are rich in protein, collagen and amino acids that are a wonderful nutritional and digestive remedy.
"I love to add Healthy Chef Marine Collagen into my soups and broths to boost protein and nourish my digestive system."
10. DOWNLOAD THE HEALTHY GUT DIET
DOWNLOAD OUR FREE HEALTHY GUT GUIDE. This includes the best foods for gut health and your daily plan to heal your gut naturally.
For a more comprehensive 28 DAY EATING PROGRAM FOR GUT HEALTH, download The Healthy Chef App and and start your 7-day free trial. Follow the eating plan and recipes and follow wellness tips from our nutritionalists. The recipes included in the 28-day program are also low FODMAP and gluten free.
Enjoy your journey of healthy eating with balance, wisdom and moderation.