I’m so excited to feature Carla Oates aka, The Beauty Chef on the blog today. Here, Carla shared her top tips for a healthy gut and a glowing you! Take it away, Carla xx
At The Beauty Chef, we believe beauty begins in the belly. Digestive health is key for healthy, radiant skin. Our gut is where 70 per cent of the immune system lies, where we metabolise hormones, where we make detoxifying enzymes and where we make nutrients, and so much of what goes on in our digestive system can impact our skin. The skin, hair and nails are the last places to receive nutrients, as they go to more important organs first, so nutrition is important for glowing skin.
Here are my Top 20 tips to ensure your gut is in tiptop shape giving you the best chance for beautiful, healthy skin.
- Eat low HI (human intervention) foods.
- Eat foods rich in prebiotics. Prebiotics help to boost the growth of friendly bacteria. These include food substances rich in soluble fibres found in asparagus, bananas, endive, chicory, garlic, globe and Jerusalem artichokes, sweet potato, leeks, onions, legumes (soaked overnight to reduce anti-nutrients), Brussel sprouts and apples.
- Consume lacto-fermented foods such as sauerkraut and kefir and The Beauty Chef Inner Beauty Powders and Boosts.
- The combination of prebiotics and probiotics helps promote a healthy gut more than either consumed alone.
- Favour organic foods, they’re far richer in nutrients and free of nasty chemicals that compromise gut health.
- If your gut is in bad repair, it may take a while for it to heal and get your own digestive enzymes working efficiently. Digestive enzymes may be helpful for a period of time.
- Eat smaller meals and chew food slowly so it liquefies before you swallow. Saliva contains digestive enzymes that help break down foods.
- Avoid drinking with your meal as it dilutes digestive enzymes.
- Acidity in the body encourages unfriendly bacteria. Reduce acidity in the body by eating more alkalising foods including your green leafy veggies and reduce your intake of acid forming foods.
- Try not to eat when you are angry or stressed as your body’s fight or flight response predominates at those times, meaning digestion is not a priority and is slowed.
- Grains and legumes provide a great source of fibre to aid detoxification but can be hard for some people to digest and contain anti-nutrients. If you consume grains and legumes, either soak them or ferment them to make them easier to digest. This helps to neutralise anti-nutrients too. It may be worth avoiding them for a while in the initial stages of healing gut health.
- Lemon juice helps stimulate digestion. A shot of lemon juice before all meals can be a good aid to digestion.
- Gluten and dairy sensitivities are quite common, so these kinds of foods are probably best avoided as they contain proteins that are hard to digest. Fermented dairy such as yoghurt are easier to digest.
- Animal proteins can be hard to digest so are best cooked slowly in soups and stews. Spices such as garlic, ginger, cumin, cayenne and black pepper can be added to animal proteins to aid digestion.
- Vegetables are best steamed or sautéed as an excess of raw vegetables can weaken digestion.
- Meat bone broths are high in minerals and other essential nutrients and are excellent for healing gut lining.
- Other beneficial gut foods include leafy greens. Studies show that they essential for feeding the good bacteria, limiting the ability of bad bacteria to colonise the gut.
- Stop bad bacteria in their tracks; avoid refined foods and sugar.
- Coconut oil is helpful for gut health as it contains lauric acid, which is anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. 20.
- Herbs that may aid digestive health include: fennel, ginger, peppermint, dandelion root, gentian root, slippery elm, licorice root, meadowsweet, aloe vera, calendula, marshmallow root, golden seal, St Mary’s thistle.
To find out more, head to www.thebeautychef.com.