Foods to Support Healthy Digestion
Gut feelings are important, but how often do we consider gut health? Gut, or digestive tract, health plays an important role in our overall well-being. With 70% of the immune system residing in the gut, it's probably no surprise that digestive health impacts the body's ability to fight sickness, but did you know poor gut health can affect cognition, mood, and energy? The "usual" symptoms of poor digestion can be obvious like bloating or cramping, but it can manifest to other non-tummy troubling symptoms.
In your journey to desire a healthier, happier you, consuming specific, gut-conscious foods is a great step forward. Jumpstart supporting your healthy digestion with a few of these top foods!
Top Foods to Support Healthy Digestion:
Leafy Greens- From spinach to swiss chard to mustard greens to arugula, leafy greens house several benefits. Leafy greens are full of excellent nutrients like fiber, vitamin K, and folate that can support healthy digestion.
Blueberries- Whether you eat these berries fresh, frozen, or dried, you can rest assured you're supporting a healthy gut! Blueberries are a prebiotic food source, meaning they fuel good gut bacteria and contain good-for-your-tummy nutrients like antioxidants and fiber.
Ginger- You'll want to keep this age-old remedy on hand, fresh ginger has proven beneficial for supporting the digestion of food and nutrient absorption and assimilation.
Fermented Foods- What do kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, and kefir have in common? Probiotics! Fermented foods are full of live bacteria and yeasts, or probiotics, that can support the balance of gut bacteria and digestion overall.
Bone Broth- Sipping a cup (or two) of bone broth a day provides you with vitamins and minerals such as iron, vitamin K, vitamin A, zinc, and more, all of which can help support overall gut health. Bone broth is unique since it varies in nutrients depending on the animal, what’s added to it, and how it was cooked. Plus, this collagen-packed protein can help reduce cravings later in the day!
Pineapple- This tropical fruit is a tasty way to help reduce those negative effects of poor digestion. Not only is it full of fiber, but pineapple contains a unique enzyme that can break down and tenderize proteins. Eat it fresh, blend it in a smoothie, or grill it up at your next BBQ for a yummy mealtime addition.
Bananas- Say "yellow" to a healthier gut! Bananas are full of pectin, a soluble fiber that soothes tummies and helps normalize bowel function. Plus, they have a prebiotic effect, fueling good gut bacteria growth.
Whole Grains- Oatmeal, brown rice, bulgur, and quinoa are just a few examples of whole-grain foods! Whole grains are fantastic for the gut's microbiome because they support a variety of good gut bacteria and act as a prebiotic. Additionally, this fiber-rich food group improves and promotes a healthier digestive process.
Artichokes- Include this hearty and fibrous prebiotic option in your regular diet to fuel good gut bacteria. This superfood is full of nutrients that promote healthy digestion and enable better absorption. Artichokes are delicious, whether steamed or grilled. Just remember--most of the nutrients are in the leaves!
Before making any changes to your diet, please check with your healthcare provider first to determine what type of nutritional plan is right for you.