Not Good for Your Gut Foods
The common phrase ‘you are what you eat’ is both annoying and, to an extent, completely right. If you spend a lot of time filling up on “not good for your gut foods” — those processed foods high in unhealthy fats and sugar — then you are going to gain weight. If you spend time eating healthier veggies and plenty of fiber then you will “be” and feel a lot healthier, too.
Learning about good for your gut foods and actually following the advice are two different things, though. Unfortunately, as humans have evolved, we are naturally drawn to the high fat, high sugar, high calorie foods. This is because our bodies want to “stock up” just in case there is a food shortage. And it’s impossible to explain to your stomach that grocery stores aren’t going to run out of supply!
Another issue here is that the whole point of fat is to ensure that your body has enough fuel saved for a potential food shortage. Why this is a problem is that even though you are overweight, your body just thinks it is well prepared and doesn’t want to let go of its reserves. That is why dieting is so painful, and why yo-yo dieting happens so frequently: Your body is in battle with you and wants to keep the fat and rebuild any reserves lost.
The good news is that with perseverance and determination, overweight people can win this battle. You might have to feel hungry to get a result and it probably won’t be easy. But you can do it. And you should.
Even better news is that there are some foods that really can benefit you, make you feel happier, give your gut a good feeling and even help you stay regular. As you begin to learn more about the good for your gut foods that make you feel amazing, it will get easier to choose them over the fatty, sugary foods you crave.
Good for Your Gut Foods: Water, and Plenty of It
Another annoying thing about our bodies: We are not very good at distinguishing between hunger and thirst. In fact, if you think you might be feeling hungry between meals, chances are that you are really just thirsty and need a big drink. And you shouldn’t just drink anything — you should drink water.
Water will help to relieve headaches, gives you more energy, is basically free and contains no calories. Experts say you should be drinking at least 2 liters a day, and there is little reason not to drink even more water if you are healthy (always check with your healthcare professional). People talk about over consumption of water, but unless you plan to drink multiple liters all in one go, it is unlikely that water will cause any adverse effects.
If you aren’t a fan of water, try adding some fresh fruit to your glass, just a couple of berries or a slice of cucumber or lemon. This will add a hint of flavor without piling in the sugars and additives that fill-up carbonated drinks. You also should avoid sugary fruit juices as these drinks will cause you to gain weight and may make you bloated, too. While a small glass of fresh juice with breakfast isn’t necessarily a problem, water should always be your first port of call.
Good for Your Gut Foods: Soluble Fiber and Insoluble Fiber
There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Both pretty much do as they describe. Soluble fiber, such as beans, fruits and oats, will soak up water; insoluble fiber like vegetables, brown rice and wheat don’t soak up water.
Knowing your types of fiber will be of real help if you are struggling with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn’s disease, constipation or diarrhea. This is because fiber has a large influence on your bowel movements. If you find that you have diarrhea, then you should decrease the amount of insoluble fiber you eat as this isn’t helping you at all. Conversely, eating more soluble fiber will help you if you are experiencing constipation. If your IBS is really making you struggle, you can also find symptom-relief-containing probiotics such as the product IBS Relief — read about it here. Read: Trust Your Gut? Bacteria and Weight Gain.
Finding a balance between the types of fiber you consume will help you to regulate your bowel movements, making you feel more comfortable. Plus, fiber is perfect for helping you to lose weight as it fills you up and usually comes from foods like vegetables that you can almost eat as much as you like.
Good for Your Gut Foods: Fermented Sauerkraut
Not what you were expecting? Sauerkraut is one of the favored good for the gut foods because it contains natural probiotics to help your gut flora improve. This helps your stomach to increase its intake of vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat, making you feel happier and healthier as a result. Studies have also shown that sauerkraut is good if you are suffering bloating, constipation, diarrhea or gas.
The main thing that makes sauerkraut so good is that it hasn’t just been pickled, it has also been allowed to ferment. It is this process that increases the bacteria in the sauerkraut that is so good for your gut. Plus, the fermentation period is what gives sauerkraut its distinctive flavor. Make sure that the sauerkraut you purchase is not pasteurized as this will not be fermented. Find fermented sauerkraut in the refrigerator aisle of your healthy grocery store. Read: Are Gut Bugs Keeping You Fat?.
And if you really get into it, then you should try kimchi, a similar sauerkraut concoction from Korean cuisine.
Good for Your Gut Foods
We are often drawn to unhealthy foods to make us feel better: chocolate, ice cream, chips, sugary drinks. All of these junk foods make us feel better in the short term, but over time make us feel much worse. Though a healthy diet doesn’t necessarily mean cutting these foods out entirely, if you want to make a real difference in your life, you will have to drastically cut back and replace with foods that really do good for your body.
Eating is fundamental to our lifestyles and eating right is the best way to feel good. So next time you are feeling bloated or fatigued, return to this post and think about what else you could be eating to help your gut health along the way.
Living larger than ever,
My Bariatric Life