GUT HEALTH CENTER
Treat your gut garden right
Just as the right foods can fertilize your gut garden, the wrong foods can make your garden wilt.
The gut garden needs proper nourishment in order to flourish.
The wrong foods starve our garden and cause a cascade of problems.
There is no way to achieve the perfect diet, nor should it be the goal.
Trying to be perfect only leads to stress and mental health issues.
The focus should be on eating a healthy whole foods diet.
The key is balance.
Having a treat is not going to make or break your health.
However, you can't eat a box of cookies or a whole cake everyday and expect to be healthy.
So on your birthday have that piece of cake, eat that dessert when celebrating your anniversary, enjoy a cookie.
The fats you choose have a huge impact on your gut health.
The wrong fats will leave your gut garden irritated and inflamed.
Vegetable oils have contributed more to the decline of human health than nearly any other food.
This may seem like a strong statement, but it's true.
Animal fats and coconut oil were replaced by trans fat.
When trans-fats were found to be horrible they switched to "non-hydrogenated" vegetable oils.
These oils contribute massive amounts of inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids.
The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fattya acids should be 2 or 3 to 1. Instead the average American has a ratio of 50 or higher to 1.
These has lead to a huge amount of unnecessary deaths, illness, and suffering, all in the name of profit.
In fact, nearly all of what is taught as "good" nutrition is only considered so because of massive amounts of food industry lobbying.
Replacing these inflammatory oils is the best thing you can do not just for your gut health, but for your overall health.
The oils you want to avoid are:
Canola (also known as rapeseed)
Fake butter spreads (Yes, even the ones from the health food store.)
While palm oil is not inflammatory like these vegetable oils, it is best to avoid it due its horrific affects on the environment.
SO WHAT SHOULD YOU USE INSTEAD?
There are some wonderful fats that can be used instead:
Sugar is added to almost everything.
We eat too much sugar, this is not news to anyone.
While cutting back on sugar is always a good thing, there are certain sweeteners that are worse for your gut than others.
Fructose based sweeteners have the worst effect on your gut health.
They cause some dysfunction of the tight junctions in your gut.
These types of sweeteners include:
High-Fructose Corn Syrup
Fruit Juice Concentrate
If you do not have gut issues, having a bit of honey in your tea is certainly not going to be a problem.
However, large amounts of these sweeteners are certainly not a healthy choice for anyone.
These types of sweeteners can negatively affect your gut bacteria.
These types of sweeteners include:
It is best to avoid these sweeteners in all cases.
Sugar alcohols are sweet tasting, but have a different structure than sugar, which makes them difficult to absorb.
These sweeteners include:
These sweeteners are definitely not a good choice for gut health.
They can cause large amounts of gastrointestinal side effects such as gas, bloating, and loose stools.
These sweeteners do not have sugar, but taste very sweet.
These sweeteners include:
Refined stevia (the white powder) can have a negative effect on gut bacteria, so we do not recommend using it if you have gut health issues.
The effects, of unrefined, or green stevia, have not been studied enough to know its affect on gut bacteria.
Monk fruit has not had adequate study to know its affect on gut health.
However, we recommend against using it because of ethical issues involved in it's harvesting and processing, as well as not knowing its affect on gut bacteria.
SO WHAT SHOULD YOU USE?
We all consume way too much sugar and sweeteners.
The best thing to do is to gradually work to reduce your consumption of sweeteners of all kinds.
Now there will always be times when you may need to use some sweeteners.
These sweeteners are very low in fructose and will have less of an impact on gut health than other sweeteners.
Drinking too much alcohol can have a very negative effect on your gut health.
Excessive alcohol intake can increase dysbiosis in the gut. Dysbiosis is an imbalance in your gut bacteria.
Does this mean that you can never have a drink? Of course not.
It does mean that having four or five cocktails a night is probably not a good idea.
SO WHAT DRINK SHOULD I CHOOSE?
A glass of red wine is the best alcohol choice for gut health.
The polyphenols, what gives wine that beautiful red color, have a beneficial effect and act as a great prebiotic!
So red wine it is!
Shoutout to our friends at Bonterra Vineyards, who not only produce incredible red wines, but are doing so using regenerative agriculture.
Despite marketing from food companies, juice is not a health food.
These juices contain massive amounts of fructose, the worst sweetener for your gut, and remove the beneficial fiber and other gut supportive compounds.
One glass of orange juice contains the same amount of sugar as two tablespoons of cake frosting!
It is a much better choice to have a smoothie with some berries and unsweetened, grass-fed kefir.
Processed and cured meats such as deli meats, hot dogs, and bacon are definitely not good for your gut heath.
Instead of buying sliced meats at the deli counter for your sandwich, cook some chicken or roast beef at home and slice it up for sandwich.
Your gut will thank you.
Does this mean you can never have bacon again?
Of course not! It just shouldn't be an everyday occurance.
For those times when you do want to treat yourself to some bacon, make sure it is from humanly raised animals, and without sugar added, like the most delicious bacon from our friends at North Country Smokehouse.
HEAVILY PROCESSED FOODS
A good rule of thumb to follow, is that the more refined and processed a food, the less likely it is to be healthy for your gut and for you.
You don't need us to tell you that whole grains are better than white bread, or that a carrot is healthier than a donut.
You got this!
Eating a large variety of real, unrefined, whole foods is the best way to support your gut.
THE HAPPY GUT EQUATION
Getting the happy gut equation right will help you to live a happier, healthier life.
IGY's + prebiotics + probiotics + healthy diet + stress relief = A happy gut!
Great prebiotic foods include citrus fruits, garlic, onions, root vegetables, and raw cacao,
Great probiotic foods include yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi.
Eating a wide variety fo whole foods is a key part of the happy gut equation.
Choosing whole foods is the best thing you can do to support a healthy gut and a healthier you. Heavily processed foods exist to make corporations money, not to make you healthy, no matter what the marketing says.