A chef’s guide to feeding a healthy gut – and the three food groups you need to know about for smooth and thriving digestion
- A Sydney nutritionist has outlined the food groups essential for a healthy gut
- Lee Holmes has outlined the ways to improve your overall gut health
- She recommended eating foods containing fibre, carbohydrates and starch
An Australian nutritionist has revealed the essential food types you should be eating regularly to ensure your gut and immune system are both healthy.
Sydney-based author and founder of Supercharged Food, Lee Holmes, says carbohydrates, resistant starches and fibre-rich foods are crucial for optimising the health of the digestive system.
Lee said the best way to support your gut is to feed it the right type of foods that are full of nutrients and fibre.
The extreme health advantages can allow the immune system to defend itself against illness and disease.
Sydney-based author and founder of Supercharged Food , Lee Holmes (pictured above), says carbohydrates, resistant starches and prebiotic rich foods are crucial for optimising the health of the digestive system
Resistant starch food to feed good bacteria
Found only in certain foods, resistant starch is known to avoid digestion in the stomach or small intestine and feed good bacteria.
Legumes, potatoes and green bananas are a few food examples that ‘resist’ being broken down and are good for your gut lining.
Although when these foods are cooked, cooled, and reheated the fibre is almost completely lost, which Lee refers to as the third ‘type’ of resistant starch.
‘This resistant-starch food increases our friendly gut bacteria, reducing our inflammation and decreasing our “bad” gut bacteria,’ Lee said.
Type 1: found in grains seeds and legumes
Type 2: found in the raw state of certain foods, including potatoes, green bananas and plantains. When cooked the resistant starch is removed and it becomes digestible
Type 3: refers to the process of cooking, cooling and reheating foods from type one and two. Heating these foods back up to high temperatures will again convert the starch into the digestible form, where it will not last to feed the bacteria in the colon
Type 4: a synthetic form of resistant starch that includes hi-maize resistant starch, which is not recommended. Hi-maize resistant starch can be found in a growing group of commercial products, such as bread, pasta and snack bars
Source: Supercharged Food
Legumes, potatoes and green bananas are a few foods that ‘resist’ digestion and are good for your gut lining
Fibre-rich foods for protection against diseases
Foods including sweet potatoes, yams, turnips and whole grains are all rich in fibre, helping cleanse the gut, improve your overall health and protect against chronic diseases.
‘A diet high in fibre can help reshape the microbiome, creating an abundance of microbial species that reduce blood sugar,’ she wrote, meaning a high-fibre diet may help prevent certain illnesses and cancers.
Lee highlighted how we should be eating approximately 30 grams of fibre per day, which many don’t receive.
‘Root vegetables in general are also high in vitamins A and C so great boosters for the immune system,’ Lee wrote.
‘Cleaning the gut is important too, so that you can have a healthy balance of good and bad bacteria.’
Sweet potatoes, yams, turnips and whole grains all assist your digestive system and keep you fuller for longer
‘Cleaning the gut is important too, so that you can have a healthy balance of good and bad bacteria,’ Lee wrote
Carbohydrates for optimising and maintaining digestive health
Similarly to dietary fibre, carbohydrates can protect against chronic diseases and also assist in maintaining digestive health.
‘If you’re cutting out carbohydrates to make way for fat loss, I urge you to reconsider,’ Lee warned.
She added: ‘It’s been indicated that fibre-rich whole foods retain their structure once they’re transported in the gut, helping to increase satiety and help with weight control’.
Lee also recommended replacing regular cooking flour with banana flour, which can be found at various supermarkets or health food stores.
By eating more of these three food groups will lead to a healthy gut and additional positive health benefits.
How to make banana flour pancakes
Lee also recommended replacing regular cooking flour with banana flour, which can be found at various supermarkets
75 grams (1/2 a cup) of green banana (plantain) flour
Three free-range eggs
One 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (gluten- and aluminium-free)
One teaspoon alcohol-free vanilla extract or vanilla powder
1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
One tablespoon Love Your Gut powder
One tablespoon raw honey or rice malt syrup, or 6 drops of liquid stevia (optional)
60 millilitres (1/4 cup) non-dairy milk of your choice
Combine all the pancake ingredients in a large mixing bowl until it’s thick – add extra milk if it’s too thick
Allow the batter to rest for a few minutes
Melt the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium to high heat
Add 60 millilitres of the batter to the pan and cook on each side for roughly two minutes or until brown
Transfer to a warm plate and keep warm while cooking the remaining batter
Stack the pancakes high and serve with preferred topping
Source: Supercharged Food
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