You’ve heard the saying ‘trust your gut’ and it turns out there’s some truth to it. When your gut is feeling off, it can be a sign that your overall health needs some attention. The good news? Food and a gut healing diet is the solve.
Here, we explain the importance of gut health and explore how you can take on a healing approach through food good for gut health.
Understanding gut health
Why does gut health matter? Our gut houses trillions of microorganisms, known as the gut microbiota, which play a vital role in maintaining our overall wellbeing. A healthy gut is not only responsible for proper digestion but also impacts our immune system, mental health, skin health and even weight management.
Various factors can negatively impact our gut health including poor diet, stress, antibiotics, and lack of sleep. This throws off the balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut leading to symptoms such as bloating, gas, or irregular bowel movements. Basically, a lot of discomfort. And, due to the influence gut health has on immune health, an imbalance can leave you more susceptible to illness.
There’s also the gut-brain axis to consider, a communication system that exists between the gut and brain linked through varying pathways including neural, hormonal and immune signalling. Neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) are produced in the gut play a crucial role in regulating mood and cognition. Recent studies have linked poor gut health with conditions like anxiety and depressions, though research is still underway.
Thankfully, we have the power to support our gut through nutrition combining gut healing foods with healthy lifestyle choices.
Gut Healing Diet
A gut healing diet is an approach that aims to restore the gastrointestinal system by incorporating food good for gut health and eliminating triggering foods. It focuses on foods that are gentle on your gut and can help reduce inflammation in the digestive tract. Think nourishing broths, cooked vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats like avocado or coconut oil. These foods are easy to digest and provide essential nutrients for repairing the gut lining.
On the flip side, avoiding inflammatory foods such as processed foods, refined sugars, gluten, dairy products, certain types of oils, and even spicy foods if you find yourself sensitive to them, to avoid triggering a flare up in the gut.
Probiotics also play a starring role in a gut healing diet as they promote the growth of good bacteria in your gut, which can aid digestion and overall gut health. You can get probiotics through your diet by consuming fermented foods for gut health such a yoghurt, kefir and kimchi.
If you’re looking for a more convenient option, a probiotic supplement is an effective way to support the gut microbiome. These beneficial bacteria can help support digestion, reduce bloating, and restore good gut flora. Vida Glow's Gut Pro probiotic supplement is scientifically formulated for women looking to improve their gut health. It contains a combination of powerful probiotic strains, including Lactobacillus plantarum, lactobacillus rhamnosus and lactobacillus reuteri. These strains have been specifically chosen for their ability to promote a healthy gut microbiome and are combined with ginger, gentian root, and cranberry, which have been shown to support digestive health and reduce inflammation in the gut.
Superfoods for Gut Health
A gut healing diet isn’t complete without plenty of superfoods that are highly nutritious in order to heal, nourish and feed the good bacteria in the gut. Packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, superfoods for gut health include:
Yoghurt: particularly Greek yogurt which contains probiotics, live bacteria that improve digestion and maintain a balanced microbial environment.
Kimchi: a traditional Korean fermented cabbage dish rich in beneficial bacteria and fibre that aid digestion.
Flaxseeds: provide high amounts of soluble fibre that feed good bacteria while reducing inflammation in the gut.
Blueberries: loaded with antioxidants and dietary fibre also support a healthy digestive system by preventing constipation and promoting regular bowel movements.
Ginger: acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and can soothe an irritated stomach while improving overall digestion.