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Improving gut health doesn’t have to be so hard if you keep gut healthy foods in your kitchen. We all know that gut health is important, but many of us don’t realize just how much of an impact the foods we eat play a role in how we feel, think and behave. Before you plan your next shopping list, read more about the foods that can improve your life in more ways than one.

 

YOGURT

  • Spoon your way to better digestion with a cup of yogurt.
  • Yogurt contains probiotics, which are a powerhouse for digestive health. Probiotics are live micro-organisms that promote health benefits when consumed and support the “good’ bacteria in the gut (3).
  • Look for yogurts that contain live cultures-an active bacteria that has been shown to help promote overall gut health and aid in reducing digestive distress (12).
  • Look for plain organic yogurt.  Many yogurts are full of sweeteners, artificial sweeteners, fillers, and food dyes.
  • Sweeten plain, organic yogurt with raw honey or pure maple syrup.  Top it with healthy, homemade cookie crumble.

CAYENNE PEPPER

  • Spice up your day with a sprinkle of cayenne pepper in your meals.
  • Research has shown that cayenne pepper can assist in bringing necessary enzymes to the stomach which ultimately aid in metabolizing food (1).
  • Also, a great aid for relieving intestinal gas as it encourages peristaltic motion – the movement of muscles located in the digestive tract (2).

AVOCADO

  • Avocados are not only a delicious addition to any meal, they are also a one-stop-shop for a wide array of vitamins and nutrients, and are full of potassium, fiber, magnesium, and monounsaturated fats (4).
  • Fiber is largely found in avocados with approximately 4.5 grams per half, which contributes to healthy digestion as a result of its ability to feed the ‘friendly’ bacteria and remove waste in a minimal amount of time (5).
  • Avocados have anti-inflammatory compounds that help soothe digestive problems.

ROOIBOS TEA

  • Gut healthy foods don’t necessarily have to be food!
  • Steep a warm cup of sweet and flowery rooibos tea for its digestive health benefits.  You can add a scoop of Vital Proteins Bone Broth or Collagen Peptides for an extra digestive boost.
  • Rooibos tea is rich in nutrients such as manganese, iron, zinc, and calcium to promote a healthy inflammatory response. Studies have shown that rooibos tea has the ability to promote improved digestion and abdominal comfort (6).

QUINOA

  • Quinoa is fiber-rich with a whopping 5 grams per cooked cup (8), mostly consisting of insoluble fibers which help to deliver friendly bacteria to the gut (7).
  • Rich in antioxidants–which flush out free radicals from the digestive tract (10)–and other minerals, quinoa boasts even more iron, fiber, and zinc over other common grains (9).
  • Magnesium is the star player in quinoa, where one cup can offer 30% of the recommended daily amount (9).

VITAL PROTEINS BEEF GELATIN

  • Gut healthy foods can be made even healthier with an all natural supplement. Maintain digestive support with supplements such as Vital Proteins Beef Gelatin.
  • Gelatin is most beneficial for improving the lining of the digestive tract and combating intestinal damage which ultimately prevents permeability (11). Gelatin is slower to digest, moves through the GI tract further and coats the small intestine.
  • Beef Gelatin and Collagen Peptides‘ nutritional benefits vary only slightly. The main difference is how they’re used. Gelatin works best while cooking, or with hot liquids, soups and broths. Both can be used cooking, but Beef Gelatin dissolves well in warm liquids, gummies, parfaits, hot teas, and more.

ESSENTIAL OILS

Essential oils have antioxidant, antiviral, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory compounds that promote gut health.

Peppermint

Peppermint has long been known as a soothing digestive aid.  It can combat intestinal parasites, and provide relief from indigestion, flatulence, and nausea.  Learn more about The Ultimate Guide to Peppermint Essential Oil.

Lavender

Lavender is well known for its soothing properties.  It can provide relief from flatulence, nausea, and vomiting.  Learn more about Use Lavender Oil to Promote Skin Health, Calm Nerves, and Induce Sleep.

Ginger

Ginger has long been known to soothe digestive upset.  The compounds in ginger support digestion and metabolism.  Ginger can help relieve symptoms of cramping, diarrhea, and nausea.

You can use these (and many others) oils proactively to support digestive health with regular everyday use.

You can also use them when experiencing any discomfort.

  • Simply inhaling peppermint or ginger from the bottle can provide relief for some digestive symptoms.
  • Dilute any of the above oils and apply to the abdomen.
  • Add a drop of pure, therapeutic grade oils to a spoonful of honey and eat to relieve discomfort.

Food is medicine and has healing power.  If you want to keep your family healthy, spend more time in the kitchen preparing fresh, whole foods meals.  Learn how to quickly and easily shop for clean foods in this free guide, The Ultimate Guide to Shopping for Clean Food and Buying Organic in the Market

Disclaimer

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Sources
(1) Maji, A. K., & Banerji, P. (2016). Phytochemistry and gastrointestinal benefits of the medicinal spice, Capsicum annuum L. (Chilli): a review. Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine,13(2). doi:10.1515/jcim-2015-0037

(2) “Spices Exotic Flavors & Medicines Chile Pepper.” History & Special Collections UCLA Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library, 2002. Accessed 27 Feb. 2017.

(3) Guarner, F., Perdigon, G., Corthier, G., Salminen, S., Koletzko, B., & Morelli, L. (2005). Should yoghurt cultures be considered probiotic? British Journal of Nutrition,93(06), 783. doi:10.1079/bjn20051428

(4) Lu, Q., Zhang, Y., Wang, Y., Wang, D., Lee, R., Gao, K., . . . Heber, D. (2009). California Hass Avocado: Profiling of Carotenoids, Tocopherol, Fatty Acid, and Fat Content during Maturation and from Different Growing Areas. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry,57(21), 10408-10413. doi:10.1021/jf901839h

(5) Naveh E., Werman M. J., Sabo E., Neeman I. Defatted avocado pulp reduces body weight and total hepatic fat but increases plasma cholesterol in male rats fed diets with cholesterol. Journal of Nutrition. 2002;132(7):2015–2018.

(6) Gilani, A. H., Khan, A.-u., Ghayur, M. N., Ali, S. F. and Herzig, J. W. (2006), Antispasmodic Effects of Rooibos Tea (Aspalathus linearis) is Mediated Predominantly through K+-Channel Activation. Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology, 99: 365–373. doi:10.1111/j.1742-7843.2006.pto_507.x

(7) Slavin, J. (2013). Fiber and Prebiotics: Mechanisms and Health Benefits. Nutrients,5(4), 1417-1435. doi:10.3390/nu5041417

(8) Repo-Carrasco-Valencia, R. A., & Serna, L. A. (2011). Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa, Willd.) as a source of dietary fiber and other functional components. Ciência e Tecnologia de Alimentos,31(1), 225-230. doi:10.1590/s0101-20612011000100035

(9) Nascimento, A. C., Mota, C., Coelho, I., Gueifão, S., Santos, M., Matos, A. S., . . . Castanheira, I. (2014). Characterisation of nutrient profile of quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa), amaranth (Amaranthus caudatus), and purple corn (Zea mays L.) consumed in the North of Argentina: Proximates, minerals and trace elements. Food Chemistry,148, 420-426. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2013.09.155

(10) How to Help Digestion. (n.d.). Retrieved April 19, 2017, from http://www.healthguidance.org/entry/14432/1/How-to…

(11) Cardile, V. (2012). Gelatin tannate reduces the proinflammatory effects of lipopolysaccharide in human intestinal epithelial cells. Clinical and Experimental Gastroenterology, 61. doi:10.2147/ceg.s28792 (12) Guyonnet, D., Chassany, O., Ducrotte, P., Picard, C., Mouret, M., Mercier, C., & Matuchansky, C. (2007). Effect of a fermented milk containing Bifidobacterium

(12) Guyonnet, D., Chassany, O., Ducrotte, P., Picard, C., Mouret, M., Mercier, C., & Matuchansky, C. (2007). Effect of a fermented milk containing Bifidobacterium animalis DN-173 010 on the health-related quality of life and symptoms in irritable bowel syndrome in adults in primary care: a multicentre, randomized, double-blind, controlled trial. Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics,26(3), 475-486. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2036.2007.03362.x

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