My favourite digestion friendly foods and drinks

  • 6 Feb 2017
  • Reading time 2 mins
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A digestion friendly diet should include foods and drinks that are: 

  • High in soluble fibres that encourage healthy elimination. 
  • High in prebiotics that encourage a healthy microbiota. 
  • Fermented, high in probiotics or, at least, producing lactic acid. 
  • Nutritious and easy to digest.
  • High in antioxidants and anti- inflammatory nutrients.

A Digestion-Friendly Diet should exclude foods and drinks that:

  • Increase gut permeability and inflame the gut.
  • Kill healthy bacteria and encourage unhealthy microbiota.
  • Slow down elimination.

On that basis, here are some of my favourite digestion friendly foods which I always have on hand and recommend you to stock up in your kitchen:

  • Apples and pears, unripe bananas
  • Avocados, artichokes and asparagus – a source of prebiotics, good for feeding healthy gut bacteria
  • Aubergine a source of soluble fibre
  • Beans, peas, chickpeas and lentils (soaked, well cooked or fermented)
  • Brown basmati rice a source of fibre and slow-release sugars
  • Cabbage, kale, broccoli and other greens as a source of fibre and B vitamins
  • Cherries, berries and plums –the natural xylose means low GL and keeps you regular. I drink Montmorency cherry concentrate (CherryActive), diluted every day.
  • Eggs, free-range, organic
  • Fish, especially oily fish (poached, steamed or baked)
  • Ginger, turmeric, oregano, mint
  • Green tea and peppermint (maximum 3 a day) and herb teas such as rooibos (red bush), moringa with ginger
  • Jerusalem artichokes – a source of prebiotics, good for feeding healthy gut bacteria
  • Kamut® bulgur, pasta and bread – digestion friendly and low GL - available from HOLFORDirect.com.
  • Kefir – your own DIY source of beneficial bacteria and lactic acid Okra – a natural source of soluble fibre
  • Onions and garlic – a source of prebiotics, good for feeding healthy gut bacteria
  • Oat flakes and oat cakes, high in soluble fibre and low GL
  • Quinoa
  • Raw nuts including cashew nuts, pistachio nuts, almonds and seeds high in fibre and minerals, especially chia seeds - a great source of soluble fibre, protein and omega-3
  • Sauerkraut fermented cabbage as a source of beneficial bacteria and lactic acid
  • Spouted seeds and grains
  • Tofu, tempeh, hummus
  • Yoghurt (live) ideally fermented with Lactobacillus acidophilus and/or Bifido bacteria.

Limit:

  • Alcohol (choose organic wines, champagne method, spirits)
  • Chilli (cayenne and paprika are better)
  • Coffee and strong tea (maximum 1 a day)
  • Dairy products (unless intolerant)
  • Fruit juice Lean organic red meat Lean organic white meat
  • Ripe bananas, grapes, dates, raisins, dried fruit (except blueberries and prunes)
  • Rye, barley, durum wheat pasta
  • Unheated honey, organic agave syrup

Avoid:

  • Added salt, MSG and other chemical additives
  • Deep-fried food
  • Food additives and preservatives
  • French fries High-yeast alcohols (beers, cheap wine)
  • Modern wheat
  • Processed meats
  • Fatty red meat
  • Sugar and artificial sweeteners
  • Yeasted breads

To find out more read Improve Your Digestion and if you’re in the UK or Ireland book a ticket to one of my Improve Your Digestion talks this March 2017.

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