How I Healed My Gut
It wasn't until recently that I started to really understand how important it is to maintain a healthy gut microbiome. In the past I’ve struggled with poor digestion, bloating and abdominal discomfort. What I didn’t realize was that the health of our gut also affects things like mood, nutrient absorption and even the immune system! There’s a wide variety of things that can disrupt the gut microbiome. A diet full of refined carbohydrates, excess sugars and inflammatory seed oils is among the main offenders, but things like stress, not getting proper sleep, antibiotic use and even not being breastfed can contribute to poor gut health. It took a lot of patience and trial and error for me to figure out how to heal my gut and maintain its health on a daily basis. Over time I’ve been able to pinpoint what foods cause discomfort and what foods/supplements can aid in healing. As always, everyone is unique and what worked for me won’t work for everyone. Below I share a list of things that have helped me as an individual. I always want to encourage you to do your own research and consult your doctor. This post is in partnership with New Chapter.
Diet & Food Journaling
A few years ago I started to pay very close attention to the way certain foods made me feel. I would write down each meal in my food journal and then write a short explanation of how I was feeling about an hour later. After about 2 months of doing this I was able to see that certain foods were upsetting my stomach time after time. For me those trigger foods are gluten, dairy, grains, excess sugar, bell peppers, brussels sprouts, and legumes. I was also noticing that if I ate meals too close together it would cause bloating and gas. I highly recommend starting a food journal if you’re experiencing gut issues. From my experience this is the most effective way to find out what foods are causing discomfort. It also helps you get more in-tune with your body. I feel best eating a whole food diet similar to the paleo diet. I always make sure to eat greens with each meal and have plenty of healthy fats.
Reduce Sugar Intake
Cutting back on sugar, especially in the morning, has been one of the most beneficial things I've done for my health thus far. Consuming excess sugar feeds bad bacteria in the gut, making you crave even more sugar. I try to start each day with a meal that is rich in vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber and healthy fats that will help stabilize my blood sugar, leading to less sugar cravings later in the day.
New Chapter Probiotic All-Flora
New Chapter’s Probiotic All-Flora supplement supports my complete gut health.* It helps to replenish healthy gut flora with a 3-in-1 blend of prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotics for advance digestion support.* It also includes Saccharomyces boulardii which helps reduce problematic yeast such as candida. Probiotic All-Flora boosts immune defenses and promotes digestive health including bowel regularity and reducing occasional gas, bloating and constipation. I take one capsule per day before my first meal.
Fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt and kombucha are rich in probiotics that help restore a healthy gut microbiota and intestinal barrier. I love adding fermented cabbage and carrots to meals or eating it by the spoonful as a snack. I also like to make probiotic coconut yogurt bowls with berries for dessert.
Bone broth is rich in gelatin and amino acids that help soothe the gut and repair intestinal wall damage. It also contains glycine which stimulates the production of stomach acid. Drinking a glass of bone broth with a meal can aid in digestion. I like to sip on a glass with ginger and lemon before bed!
I don’t follow a strict intermittent fasting routine, but I do try to go at least 5-6 hours in between each meal. Since I swapped out smaller more frequent meals for larger more spread out meals, I’ve found that I have a much easier time digesting food and my bowel movements have become more regular.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.