MY TOP TIPS FOR CARING FOR YOUR GUT…

1. Apple cider vinegar – 1 tbsp in warm water on rising (with your lemon) or use as salad dressing later in the day. This stimulates the hydrochloric acid in your stomach for digestion.

2. Probiotics – I take a probiotic supplement everyday. It repopulates the gut with good bacteria. I use renew life but there are some great ones out there.

3. Eat probiotic whole foods- Sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, kefir – found at most health food stores. Also eat prebiotic wholefoods – these foods feed and support the growth of good bacteria such as onions, garlic, dandelion greens, artichokes and slightly hard bananas.

4. Supplement Correctly- digestive enzymes, slippery elm or glutamine. A nutritionist or naturopath can support you with these supplements.

5. Lemon juice in warm water on rising – which stimulates gastric juices.

6. Eating slowly in a relaxed environment – the blood diverts away from digestive path in times of stress. No tv, no phone, no arguing, not rushing etc!

7. Not drinking with your meals – 20 minutes before and after. Water dilutes the gastric juices that are vital for the break down of our food.

8. Cutting back on gluten containing foods- White processed bread, flour, traditional pastas, cakes, pastries etc. The gut just does not agree the protein found in gluten, its so inflammatory.

9. Drink aloe vera juice in the morning – your health stores will assist you finding this. It is very soothing for the gut OR pure celery juice brilliant for helping the hydrochloric acid in your stomach.

10. Start each meal with something raw (e.g. salad) to get your digestive enzymes fired up and ready to break down your food! Chomp on a celery stick or cucumber before your meals I often do this as im chopping/preparing!

11. Chew your food 10-20 times…before you swallow… You will put much less pressure on your digestive system by doing it. Do you ever wolf down your food, have indigestion and then peckish 30 mins later? Chewing is crucial!

12. Soak your grains, nuts and seeds for better digestion- Soaking them removes the nutritional inhibitors/phytic acid that the body struggles to break down.

13. Learn to love sprouts– You can add them to your salads. Sprouts are so rich in enzymes. My fave are broccoli sprouts, cancer fighting and ridiculously high in antioxidants!

14. Alkaline your body- avoid acidic foods like alcohol, caffeine, sugar, refined white salt and wheat. Stay away from the processed and packaged convenience foods especially the treats as sugar feeds the bad bacteria!

15. Be aware- Stay away from things like gaviscon as they decrease the hydrochloric acid in our stomachs

16. Try and stay off the antibiotics unless really necessary – they effect the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut.

16. Try to eat fruit on an empty stomach – not straight after a meal as it ferments in the stomach and can irritate optimal digestion.

17. Do not eat late at night- aim to eat 2-3 hours before bedtime so yur body has time to gently digest.

18. Drink up!- And with filtered water if possible! Fluid helps to remove excess waste and keeps our bowels healthy! Herbal teas count to, my favourite for digestion are peppermint and fennel.

19. Have a cup of chamomile tea at night- it soothes and relaxes the bowel wall – and aids constipation!

20. Increase your fibre intake!- Eat plenty of fiber. This not only keeps your bowels moving, but also helps eliminate excess hormones. Love your Flaxseeds and leafy green smoothies- they are high in fiber!