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Summer is here and I’m soaking it in while I can. With the change in season comes more changes—to temperature, routines and within your body. Because of the warmer weather, you may find yourself eating more cold foods, lighter meals and going out to eat more frequently. Hey, it’s patio season, I get it!
But, it’s important to remember that too much shifting from your norm can bring up some unwanted changes, like inflammation in your gut. Lucky for you, I’ve compiled some expert advice from two trusted sources to help heal your gut in a natural way. Keep reading to learn more and choose an option that’s best for you.*
Vanessa Grutman is a certified health coach, integrated health practitioner, kinesiologist and host of the Energy Upgrade podcast. Through her own healing journey, she’s been able to meet others where they’re at and help them achieve optimal results.
I recently completed her recommended 7-Day Functional Medicine Detox and saw amazing results. It’s known as the safest liver detox protocol that’s carefully designed to provide a positive experience. In our life, we’ll come across chemicals, toxins and pollutants on a daily basis. This can cause weight gain, fatigue, brain fog, bloating and more. The comprehensive detox I did gently eliminates these toxins, while also rebalancing your body.
Vanessa believes there aren’t any quick fixes for gut health because there’s always an underlying root cause. There are lots of traditional summer foods that can cause inflammation and bloating in your gut: alcohol, coffee, sugary drinks, dairy and processed foods. Avoiding them may not be feasible, but focusing more on whole foods that are local, organic and in-season can be a game changer. And with the liver detox, you’ll be able to give your digestive system a bit of a breather.
A registered dietitian with a focus on plant-based nutrition and gut health, host of The Allsorts Podcast and author of Good For Your Gut, Desiree Nielsen has great evidence-based advice on gut health—and delicious recipes to try. To heal your gut during the summer months, Desiree recommends reaching for these seasonal bites over the ones that’ll stress your digestive system. Take a look—you probably have most of them in your home already!
High in gut-friendly fibre (a whopping 8 grams of fibre per cup), raspberries contain two special compounds that help boost the gut microbiome: antioxidant flavonoids and pectin (a type of fermentable soluble fibre).
Is this herb in your garden growing out of control? Enjoy fresh mint tea whenever bloating strikes! Mint acts as an antispasmodic that helps relax the musculature of the gut; easing cramping and bloating.
Sprouts are potent plant medicine and broccoli sprouts are no exception! They contain significantly higher phytochemical content compared to mature broccoli. What’s more, sprouts are a natural source of an enzyme called diamine oxidase (DAO) that helps break down histamine in the gut, which can contribute to inflammatory and intolerance-type symptoms.
Perfect for those with sensitive tummies (like those who deal with IBS), strawberries offer a ton of vitamin C and fibre. They also don’t cause bloating because they’re low in fermentable carbohydrates or FODMAPs (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols).
Throw a little marinated tofu into your regular grill rotation! In addition to being a low-bloat plant protein, it packs 10 grams of protein per half cup. Adding soy foods to your diet helps to improve the health of the gut lining and is associated with promoting beneficial bacteria, like bifidobacteria, in the gut microbiome.
Add a little boost of beneficial bacteria to your meal. Plus, it’s so easy to make at home with cabbage from the market or your home garden. Cabbage contains plenty of fibre, as well as an amino acid called glutamine, that’s used as fuel by your gut cells, helping to keep your gut well-nourished!
There is nothing better than a ripe summer tomato. And your gut will benefit from both the antioxidant pigments they contain as well as their prebiotics.
Kombucha is a great alternative to sweetened sodas and alcoholic drinks. And it offers beneficial microbes, as well as short-chain fatty acids. Look for kombucha that is traditionally fermented and lower in sugar, ideally with no more than 4 to 5 grams of sugar per cup. Bonus points if it’s made by a local company!
I hope these quick and easy-to-follow tips support you (and your gut) throughout the summer months. Remember, changes take time to turn into routines, so don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t incorporate everything into your life right away. Every little bit helps to bring balance to your gut and digestive track. Now, go out there and enjoy summer to the fullest!
*The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.