The microbiome in your gut is connected to your overall wellbeing—and not just your digestion. It’s linked to mood, energy, immunity, and longevity, so, having a healthy gut is of utmost importance.
It’s no surprise that sugary, processed, and fried foods don’t support gut health (or your health in general), while fermented foods are great for boosting the good bacteria in your gut. However, fermented foods aren’t the only things you can eat to support your gut.
Here are the top (non-fermented) foods to support your gut health, according to three top gastroenterologists.
Integrative medicine doctor and gastroenterologist Marvin Singh, MD highly recommends “leafy greens of all sorts,” because they are rich in fiber. Foods that are packed with fiber contribute to gut health because they promote the growth of good bacteria while getting rid of bad bacteria.
Caribbean sweet potato
Vincent Pedre, MD is an integrative medicine doctor and the author of Happy Gut who suggests that people get creative by experimenting with different varieties of root veggies. “There are so many great starchy root vegetables at Latin supermarkets that help build a diverse gut microbiome,” he says. Plus, they’re easy to integrate into your meals because they can be prepared in the same way as you would other potatoes.
Another favorite of Dr. Singh, bone broth has high collagen content, which you may associate more with the beauty industry for its ability to smooth wrinkles. However, collagen also helps your gut and aids digestion.
“I’m a big fan of omega-D rich foods, like wild salmon and sardines, because they’re anti-inflammatory. This makes them both critical and beneficial for the entire body, including the gut,” Dr. Pedre says. Wild salmon may not be such an uncommon dish however, sardines are also a great source of nutrients and are more cost-effective.
Turmeric brown rice
Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which is why Dr. Pedre recommends that we add more of it to our diet and incorporate it into our cooking whenever we can. His suggestion is turmeric brown rice so that you can also benefit from a fiber-rich source.
Gastroenterologist at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center Jacob Skeans, MD recommends incorporating avocados into your daily diet “because they’re high fiber and also have so many other great nutrients.” So go ahead and order that avocado toast at Sunday brunch with the knowledge that you’re not just being trendy, you’re supporting your gut health, too.