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Now is the Time to Take Care of Your Gut Health



When Spring comes round each year, we will often get the urge to spring clean our homes, our wardrobes and even our cars!  But have you ever given a thought to spring cleaning your gut?

This can be an ideal time to think more about how you look after your gut health.

We share six suggestions on how this can be successfully achieved...

Be adventurous in trying new foods

It is so easy to get stuck in a rut where we eat the same foods week after week. The problem with this habit is that we narrow the amount of nutrients that we are able to obtain from our diet.  When we make the effort to try new recipes and introduce new flavors, we get additional nutrients or extra bioactive compounds in our diet. 

Research has found that the greater the diversity in the gut microbiome, the better our overall health becomes.



How good are you at chewing your food?

I am one of the slowest of eaters but that is because I do chew my food carefully!  And that is a good thing because gut health isn't always just about what you are eating, it is also how you are eating too.  Chewing properly is often underrated when it comes to supporting a healthy gut. 

Ideally, we should be chewing each mouthful twenty times to help support digestion.  Chewing effectively helps to reduce the risk of partially digested food particles entering the gut.  In addition,when you eat mindfully, it is important for supporting digestion and optimising gut health.

Include fermented foods in your diet

There are lots of tasty fermented foods to include in your diet.  These include kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut and kombucha - and they should contain live cultures, playing an important role in nourishing the beneficial bacteria in the gut while helping to produce the beneficial short chain fatty acids.   

Always try to opt for good quality fermented foods and brands when possible and at the same time, try to include one or two portions of such foods daily. 

And remember that apple cider vinegar is great too.


It is time to go well above those "five a day"

We used to hear and read all the time about making sure to include five fruits and vegetables in your daily diet.  But the thinking today is that these should rise to at least ten different fruits and vegetables. 

In fact, the American Gut Project suggests we should try to eat at least thirty different plant products each and every week - this is to make our plates more colorful and our taste buds and gut microbiome happier!

Ditch those artificial sweeteners

While we all need to cut down on our sugar intake, changing to artificial sweeteners is not a good alternative. 

Many food manufacturers are replacing sugar with these artificial sweeteners in their products ranging from yogurts to drinks and candies. 

Such sweeteners can be detrimental to gut health and long term well being, giving rise to the pathogenic bacteria in the gut - also known as bad bacteria.



Are you eating plenty of fiber-rich foods?

Most of us know how important fiber is when planning our diet to optimize our gut health.  It plays a vital role in supporting digestion, aiding excretion and nourishing beneficial bacteria.

Try to up your fiber to at least two ounces per day by incorporating beans and pulses into your meals, snacking on seeds and nuts and changing to whole grains.



Alvaro et al. (2009). Composition and metabolism of the intestinal microbiota in consumers and non-consumers of yogurt. DOI:
10.1017/S0007114507243065. (Accessed, 2 October 2021).

Brown K, et al (2012). Diet-induced dysbiosis of the intestinal microbiota and the effects on immunity and disease. DOI:
10.3390/nu4081095. (Accessed, 2 October 2021).