The food you consume directly impacts your gut health. Our gut has trillions of bacteria that help in maintaining its health. But we hardly consider keeping our digestive system healthy. We prefer eating those foods that we find tempting without knowing how these may affect our health adversely.
In addition, in this contemporary era where our lives were already busy, COVID-19 has disturbed the entire routine of the day as we are staying more indoors now. We keep eating without doing any physical exercise. Proper digestion of food is very important for one’s overall well-being. If food is not digested properly, we may feel stomach ache or heavy on the body. Though exercising is one of the ways to keep yourself fit but other than exercising, you can also watch out for the food items that are good or bad for your health. Changes in gut health can affect the way we look and feel.
Check out our list of the top 15 foods to eat for a healthy gut:
It is a probiotic food that is formed by lactic acid bacteria. It is most suitable for people with lactose intolerance.
A type of fermented milk drink and helps people with lactose intolerance. It has a slightly tart and acidic taste. You can consume it as a breakfast smoothie or try it with oats.
This finely shredded cabbage fermented by lactic acid bacteria is rich in fiber, Vitamin B, C, and K. The fermentation makes the microbes present in the cabbage to eat the sugar present in it and add good bacteria to the cabbage.
It is a fermented soybean product that is rich in phytic acid and Vitamin B12 improves minerals absorption in the body. It resembles tofu but fermented. Try adding it to your salad.
A spicy and fermented Korean dish that contains lactic acid bacteria and helps in improving digestion. You can add it to a fried rice bowl.
This Japanese seasoning is made of soybeans. It is a high source of protein and fiber. Try consuming it in soup, sauces, or dressings for your meals.
It is a type of fermented green tea that is fermented by bacteria and yeast that are useful for gut health.
Low in calories but rich in Vitamin K, pickles are a great source of probiotic bacteria.
- Apple Cider Vinegar
It contains hydrochloric acid which boosts metabolism and keeps your digestive system healthy.
Including a mango a day in your diet helps in improving your gut health by keeping your blood sugar level in control and reducing body fat.
- Sprouted grains
These are one of the easily digestible food items and are a rich source of nutrients for the body. During the sprouting phase, enzymes are released which break down proteins and carbohydrates. These help in giving energy to the body while maintaining gut health.
It is a prebiotic food that helps in feeding the existing flora already present in your gut. It offers immense health benefits especially if eaten raw.
Fully ripened bananas are rich in fiber while green bananas are rich in resistant starch which produces more good gut bacteria. For better digestion, try consuming banana with peanut butter.
These are prebiotic foods and contain pectin which helps in lowering cholesterol. You can consume pear directly or try making a dish with oatmeal and pear for a healthy breakfast.
Onions are prebiotic foods that help in maintaining gut bacteria. It further promotes digestive health by lowering cholesterol and relieving constipation. This versatile food can be added to soup or salad or consume in your favorite way of eating.
What type of foods to avoid for better gut health?
For a healthy gut, you should avoid the below-listed foods –
- Artificial Sweeteners – These are not good for your gut health as they pass through the body without being digested. Research has shown that artificial sweeteners may get attached to the microflora in your gut and can lead to health conditions like glucose intolerance.
- Red Meat – Excessive consumption of red meat could prove detrimental to your health. It may interfere with the regular processing of the gut bacteria that could further lead to deteriorated heart health.
- Processed Foods – Many studies have shown the harmful impact of processed foods on gut health and overall health. The typical western and American diet consists of more processed food than natural foods. Hence it increases the risk of weight gain, obesity, increased insulin resistance, and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Alcohol – It can mess with your gut health. It can weaken your stomach’s natural acid, cause stomach ache, and damage your stomach. It prevents the nutrients from being absorbed in the small intestine. If the microbes present in the gut get harmed or killed by alcohol, it may lead to inflammation and bleeding gastric lesions.
The Bottom Line
Encapsulating, it is never too late to make a change in your diet for your better health. Consume more probiotics, prebiotics, fiber, polyphenols, and fermented foods instead of artificial sweeteners, red meat, processed foods, and alcohol to keep your gut health on track. You can also try adding CBD to your diet for better well-being.