Annabelle Breuer-Udo: Founder of Evocative HealthPath LLC Certified Coach (ACC) I Author I Ayurveda I Mindfulness

Gut Health 101 For A Happy Gut And Happy Life

Are You Being Good To Your Gut?

“Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food” -Hippocrates

When Hippocrates said this 2000 years ago, all food was real. But today, there is good food, and bad food; functional medicine and bad medicine.

“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison.” – Ann Wigmore

A simple fact of life is that those who eat better live better. The power of food and nutritions promote great healing if you suffer from any symptoms such as migraines, autoimmune disease, hormonal dysbalances, stress, burnout, anxiety, depression, allergies, pain, sleep deprivation, physical pain, emotional stress and pain, digestive issues( IBS, SIBO, Chron…) and others! And the starting point is the digestive system.

There are many stressors in our life that can impact our whole body-check out my recent blog, “What you ought to know about Stress”. One of these stress stimuli is food. Therefore, food has a significant impact on our overall health-the body-mind-spirit and soul, and it can be either our greatest healer or the most considerable stressor. Moreover, food impacts our gut health. In my blog article  “What lies behind many inflammations” you can learn more about the concepts called “The three roots and many branches,” and the significance of our gut health related to our overall health. 

To name only a few causes of digestive stress that might affect your gut:

1.Processed food, hydrogenated oils, high in sugar, low in fiber, processed and nutritionally depleted food

2.Food intolerances and allergies

3.Prolonged and frequent use of antibiotics

4.Parasites and yeast such as candida

5.Chronic Stress

6.Toxins such as mercury and lead

7.Lack of stomach HCL

8.Zinc deficiency

How can you reduce the digestive stress for better health?

I’m not a great advocate of recommending one diet. Because I believe that there is no one diet for everyone as we are all unique cohorts. The one food that might work for one does not mean that it is suitable for others. Usually, I take a very comprehensive intake of my clients to get to know them profoundly. Based on that, I would make a recommendation which next step would make sense regarding nutrition and not a diet. There is a difference between nutrition and diet. 

Nutrition means taking in the nutrients that help with growth, metabolism, and repair. For this reason, nutrition is personalized to the individual. In contrast, diets are theory based on one size fits all and let us be stuck very quickly in the realm of theory and opinion instead of the individual!

But there is one single exception-one single diet that I recommend to everyone, to integrate daily. It is the Healthy Whole Food diet based on “Eating Whole and Real Food!”

What does that mean? 

Whole and REAL foods…

*are grown, not manufactured,

*have not been processed or modified and they do not contain unnecessary additives or preservatives,

*are nutrient-dense,

*contain nutrients that have proven benefits,

*are nature made, rather than factory-made,

*taste good and are satisfying,

*can be prepared in different ways, and

*contain no harmful ingredients.

Use the power of food and nutrients as healing and medicine. Therefore, think of fresh fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, legumes, lean meat, and fish. Since they are whole, natural foods, real foods contain more vitamins, minerals, and nutrients than packaged and processed foods. Pure foods also make you feel full longer. Why not become a real food addict, right?

Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.” – Michael Pollan 

Without question, fruits and vegetables are critical components of a healthy diet. They can help you avoid gut issues and reduce stress. Fruits and vegetables also contribute many nutrients that are under-consumed in the US, including vitamins A, C, and K, potassium, fiber, and magnesium. And since they are relatively low in calories, fruits and veggies can replace high-calorie foods, aiding in weight loss. Almost everyone can benefit from eating more fruits and vegetables, but variety is as important as quantity. No single food provides all the nutrients your body needs. So, keep trying new foods until you have a broad array of fruits and veggies that you can enjoy and tolerate daily. Taste the rainbow colors with Fruits & Veggies dependant on what your body tolerates.

4 Tips When Buying Pure Foods

1. Buy Local: Buying local products means the fruits or veggies have longer to ripen before they’re picked. This means more nutrients for you!

2. Avoid the “Dirty Dozen”: This is the list of the Dirty Dozen that is put together by the Environmental Working Group. The list highlights the produce that has the highest pesticide residues and higher concentrations of pesticides than other produce items. 

3. Eat-in Season: Not only can you save money eating foods that are in season, but seasonally fresh produce is picked when ripe and fully developed. This means the plant has also had more sun exposure and will have higher levels of antioxidants. See what produce is in season here

4. Wash Your Produce: If you are unable to purchase organic produce, make sure to wash it thoroughly to remove harmful pesticides from the surfaces of the food. 

While this information is easy to understand, it may not be as easy to practice. Becoming a real and whole food addict is not a diet – it’s a lifestyle choice. Once you notice the positive benefits, this choice will quickly become a habit! Start by making just a few small changes. Choose fresh, raw, whole foods and get into the habit of keeping them readily available so you can snack on them at a moment’s notice. Of course, with the awareness of what your body and gut health tolerate.

If you are a highly sensitive person-Highly sensitive people may have particular tastes in foods, might have food sensitivities, and process things, even food on a deeper level. Check out my recent blog, “What is a Highly Sensitive Person”.

If you’re ready to become a real food addict, but need help getting started, contact me to schedule an appointment– the first step to a healthier you. 

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