Take care of your tummy

By admin
31 August 2014

A healthy gut is the answer to a vibrant and vigorous lifestyle, and your overall wellbeing can be affected greatly if it isn't kept happy.

The microbiome, a bacterial population found within us and on our skin's surface, plays a massive part in keeping us in top condition and its state can trigger conditions such as anxiety, asthma and obesity. Digestion and absorption is also affected by the microbiome, so we need to keep it working.

Here are some foods which you can tuck into to help your gut be the best it can be.

Sauerkraut

Fermented cabbage may not sound like the most appetising ingredient, but its benefits are unstoppable. It delivers probiotic bacteria to the GI (gastrointestinal tract, in charge of digestion) tact. You can also incorporate it into a bunch of tasty meals, just make sure you purchase it fresh rather than canned or frozen as the good bacteria will be long gone in this form. Add it to delicious treats such as quesadillas, tomato sauce or even fried up in a stir fry.

Oranges

We all know how yummy oranges are, and they can be thrown into everything from a salad to a chicken dish. There is a soluble fibre in the fruit which is fermented by our guts, and the fatty acid butyrate is formed. This builds up and strengthens the cells lining our GI tracts, thus helping the food go down smoothly.

Butter

Everything in moderation, butter is a natural source of butyrate. So don't feel afraid to swap the oil for butter every now and then when cooking, and stick to a product from grass-fed cows if possible as this type is even more beneficial due to the animal's plant-based diet.

Garlic

Along with keeping vampires away, garlic acts as a probiotic to keep our guts healthy. Add a touch to meals such as stews, pasta dishes or for a jazzy cheese on toast to keep it in your system.

If you slot in some of these foods into your diet, you can help influence your body into eating better for your GI tract. A recent study published in BioEssays journal found that microbiomes can manipulate dietary desires by releasing molecules that affect particular systems or influence our brain through the vagus nerve, connected to the stomach.

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