Did you know that we have a second brain? Yup – it’s your gut! Within the walls of your digestive system is another neural network; the enteric nervous system (ENS). The ENS plays an important role in controlling digestive function, regulating inflammation, and building immunity to disease. Our second brains can also be the root cause of low energy, hormone imbalance, slow metabolism, anxiety, depression, skin issues, and even poor memory. Some of these signs are related to a leaky gut, known as leaky gut syndrome.
There are many causes of leaky gut syndrome but the main ones include: poor diet, stress, toxin overload and an imbalance of bad bacteria. Today’s modern diet consists of consuming food additives and preservatives from processed foods, GMOs, pesticides and other toxins from conventional meat and produce. We also live a lifestyle that often involves taking antibiotics and other drugs, lathering on antibacterial soaps and sanitizers, and for most of us copious amounts of stress… all of which affect the function of your gut!
Poor digestion or leaky gut syndrome is a common condition that many people are dealing with and may not even know it. Healing your gut is the first step to overall good health. Some simple ways to heal your gut include removing processed foods, refined sugar, excess starches and excess grains from your diet. The second step is to put good bacteria into your gut by consuming foods and supplements that promote a happy gut.
I incorporate at least one or more of the below foods and supplements into my daily routine.
Top 5 Gut Healing Foods & Supplements:
1) Fermented Foods & Drinks – some of my favorites include Farmhouse Culture sauerkraut or gut shots, kimchi, kombucha, kefir and yogurt.
2) Bone Broth – rich in protein and gelatin that helps support digestive health. There are many great recipes online or you can find it at your local Whole Foods or health food store.
3) Healthy Fats – avocados, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, butter or ghee and omega-3s found in salmon, flaxseeds, hemp seeds and chia seeds. Don’t be afraid of fats!
3) Probiotics – one of the most important supplements to replenish good bacteria (either in food or supplement form).
4) Digestive Enzymes – these help your body break down food into carbs, fats and proteins making it easier for your body to absorb more essential nutrients.