Top 5 Gut-Friendly Foods
An increasing number of studies show that the gut plays a vital role in your health. The gut has some crucial microbes that aid in fighting other harmful microbes and produce essential vitamins. In addition, your gut is responsible for about 70% of your immune system, and if you are consuming the appropriate diet, you can enhance the health of your gut. Below are 5 best foods to help improve your gut health and immune response.
Foods Rich In Fiber
Fiber is a plant-based carbohydrate. There are two types; soluble and insoluble fibers with distinct characteristics and functions.
When you eat soluble fiber, it will form a gel after absorbing water. The gut bacteria consume this gel. In contrast, most of the insoluble fiber passes the GI (gastrointestinal) tract without alteration, making your stool bulky. This increases the normal bowel movement since the movement of food through the GI tract is increased due to the insoluble fiber.
The two types of fiber are needed to enhance digestion and prevent constipation. Also, they protect against gaining excess weight and chronic health conditions like hypertension, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
Sources of fiber-rich foods are:
- Lentils and dried peas
- Bran (wheat and oat)
- Dried fruits like raisins and prunes
Substances in food, such as polyphenols, help to fight infection, decrease inflammation and protect your cells from damage. Some foods that have been found to be rich in polyphenols are red wine, coffee and tea. Harmful gut bacteria like E. coli is fought off with the aid of polyphenols in green tea. Also, it helps decrease the symptoms of peptic ulcer and inflammatory bowel diseases.
The reason for an inflammation, in most cases, is to protect you. The body releases white blood cells to fight infections and other conditions. While these benefits your health since it protects you, sometimes your system releases these inflammatory chemicals even when they are not needed. In this case, the damaged part of the inflammations is the result, and can worsen GI tract conditions such as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome.
Anti-inflammation foods help provide nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, minerals and vitamins that will calm the unwanted inflammation. This naturally promotes your gut health.
Below are some essential anti-inflammatory foods:
- Flax seed
- Fruits like grapes and berries
- Vegetables like tomatoes, pepper and broccoli
- Fatty fish like anchovies, sardines and salmon
A combination of probiotics and prebiotics in a single, gut-healthy food is called symbiotic food. They give you the advantages of the two categories of nutrients, making them supportive to the gut bacteria and providing new healthy ones.
Some noteworthy examples are:
- Banana soothes with yoghurt made from kefir
- Leeks and garlic, asparagus
Live yogurt is a great source of healthy bacteria called probiotics. For a tasty breakfast, look for sugar-free, full-fat versions and top with your own fruit. Yogurt beverages have far more beneficial bacterial to than regular yogurt. But keep in mind that they can be laden with sugar.