When talking about health overall, one very important part of it is gut health.
Gut health relies on the healthy balance of bacteria in the digestive system. That means that there are plenty of good bacteria and beneficial bacteria present in a healthy gut aka prebiotics and probiotics (yes, there are both good bacteria and bad bacteria, in a healthy gut there is healthy gut bacteria).
A healthy gut can keep chronic diseases at bay, heart disease, irritated bowel syndrome, and similar, so it’s very important you pay attention to it. It’s also important for digestive health.
So, what’s a great way to take care of your gut health daily? Well, our favorite thing – food!
The food you eat can greatly affect the condition and the health of your gut and can impact your gut microbiota (aka gut microbiome). The best diet for gut health is a plant-based diet. There are many research studies that say that switching from animal-based to plant-based diet can improve your gut heath. So, instead of eating a lot of red meat, fried foods, and similar things, eat more plant-based (aka more fruits and vegetables)! Research shows that eating lots of fruits and vegetables has many health benefits, both for gut health, and health overall.
So, I’m writing a roundup post of the best food to eat for your gut health!
Foods That Are Good For Your Gut Health
Fermented foods are great for gut health! Why? Because eating fermented foods can boost the number of good bacteria you need in your gut for your gut health.
Plus, probiotics (which fermentation boosts in foods) are known to be good not only for gut health, but for weight loss too! The benefits of probiotics are really huge! They’re anti-inflammatory, and eating them promotes the growth of good, beneficial bacteria.
Some fermented foods you should probably incorporate into your diet:
There are tons of ways to incorporate these foods into your diet – miso is great in miso soup (it gives an amazing umami flavor to dishes), kimchi is great as a side to many dishes, sauerkraut as well, and tempeh is great for meat substitutes.
If you think bananas have nothing to do with gut health, you’re wrong! They’re great, and full of the good bacteria that the gut needs, and full of good nutrients.
Garlic has antibacterial and antifungal properties, which makes it the perfect thing to keep the bad bacteria from your gut!
Fiber is so important for gut health. Peas are a great source of fiber for you since they have high fiber levels! Peas have 5 grams of fiber in 100 grams of peas – which is great! That makes peas great food for gut health.
So, now that you know which foods you should incorporate into your diet, let’s get into some recipes using some of those ingredients.
Bok Choy and Tofu Miso Soup
5 oz Tofu, firm – 130 calories
2 cups Leafy greens, bok choy, raw – 20 calories
1 tsp Sesame seeds (tsp) – 6 calories
1 tsp Red pepper flakes – 0 calories
2 cups Miso soup – 30 calories
1 Tbsp Green onions – 1 calories
½ cup Mushrooms, small, whole or sliced – 22 calories
Cut tofu into small cube shapes.
Spray a pan with an oil spray.
Stir fry tofu on low heat ~20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until all surfaces are browned.
Spray the bottom of a pot with cooking spray.
Add in mushrooms and bok choy – cook for 2 minutes on low heat.
Add in miso soup and tofu, let simmer on low heat for ~10+ minutes, or until your soup gets to its desired temperature.
Top with green onions (chopped), sesame seeds, and red pepper flakes.
Oatmeal with Pineapple and Nuts
½ cup Oatmeal, dry oats (uncooked) – 150 calories
¼ cup Kefir, plain, low-fat – 27.5 calories
⅛ cup Nuts – 100 calories
1 cup Pineapple, fresh chunks – 83 calories
Mix oats with water and kefir, microwave.
Top with nuts and berries.
No nuts? Use seeds.
Sauerkraut Turkey Wraps with 1/4 Avocado
4 oz Deli slices, turkey – 120 calories
2 Tbsp Sauerkraut – 5 calories
¼ Avocado, medium – 80.5 calories
Layer turkey with sauerkraut and avocado slices.
Roll to make a “wrap.”
Sausage Sauerkraut Bowl
1 Sausage, chicken – 140 calories
4 Tbsp Sauerkraut – 10 calories
1 Tbsp Avocado oil – 124 calories
1 Bell pepper, green – 27 calories
4 cups Leafy greens, butter lettuce, raw – 28 calories
1 Garlic salt, dash – 0 calories
Slice sausage into coin shapes
Add oil to a pan
Stir fry sausage on medium-low heat ~8 minutes, or until sausage has cooked through
While sausage is cooking, chop bell pepper into small pieces on a separate cutting board
Combine all ingredients when ready to eat
Note: The oil from the sausage, the liquid from the sauerkraut, and the salt & pepper is your “dressing”
Note: I personally like these brands of sausage – but choose whatever brand you have access to! Trader Joe’s; Fra’Mani; Teton; Open Nature; Aidells
Note: No sausage? Use vegetarian sausage – all stores will carry an option
Banana Split Pops
½ Banana – 52.5 calories
1 Maraschino cherry – 8 calories
2 Tbsp Regular whipped cream – 30 calories
1 tsp Sprinkles – 20 calories
1 Tbsp Chocolate chips – 70 calories
This recipe works best when making 2+ servings at a time
Stick banana with a popsicle stick
Melt chocolate in microwave
Roll banana in chocolate, top with sprinkles
Top with whipped cream & cherry
No dairy? You can often find dairy-free whipped creamy at most stores.
Banana Pancakes with 1 Tbsp PB
1 Banana – 105 calories
1 Egg, large – 72 calories
1 Tbsp Peanut butter – 94 calories
1 Cinnamon, dash – 0 calories
Whisk banana and eggs. Add in cinnamon.
Spray a non-stick pan with an oil spray
Add small amount of batter to pan, flip when you can easily slide turner under it
Make a sandwich with the PB or dip pieces of pancakes into the PB on the side
½ Banana – 52.5 calories
2 Tbsp Chocolate chips – 140 calories
⅛ cup Peanuts – 96 calories
1 Salt, dash – 0 calories
Slice banana in half, lengthwise
Place nuts in a small container (like a baggie) and crush with a hard object (e.g. a hammer, or similar kitchen equipment)
Place chocolate chips in a small container, microwave for ~30 seconds until melted
Top banana slices with chocolate and nuts
Either eat as they are now, or freeze for a few hours
No nuts? Use pumpkin or sunflower seeds