The 5 Essential Cookbooks That Are All About Gut Health
The Noma Guide to Fermentation by Rene Redzepi and David Zilber
if you're an mbg reader, you likely know that having a healthy microbiome is crucial to good gut health, and more so, that eating fermented food is crucial to have a healthy microbiome. This tome from the chefs of Noma, one of the world's best restaurants, is the only book you'll ever need to buy about fermentation, with in-depth, image-filled guides to making kombuchas, koji, shoyus, misos, garums, fruits, vegetables, and more. These chefs truly see fermentation as not only a health strategy but the secret to easily creating mind-blowing food, and, in addition to teaching how to ferment, they tell you the oft-missing—how to incorporate your ferments in your real life, using them to take your meals to the next level. The Noma Guide to Fermentation by Rene Redzepi and David Zilber ($40)
Real Food Heals: Eat to Feel Younger and Stronger Every Day by Seamus Mullen
mbg Collective member Seamus Mullen was an award-winning chef before landing in the hospital with a series of health issues (you can hear his whole story, which involves autoimmune diseases and a seizure in Thailand, on the mbg podcast). After using food to heal his own body, he began to change his approach to food professionally, and the result is evidenced in Real Food Heals. The recipes showcase his culinary talents and chef sensibilities but incorporate the anti-inflammatory and gut-healing ingredients that helped along Seamu's own journey—think Shaved Vegetable and Arugula Salad with Kefir-Chia Vinaigrette and Sardines or an avocado carpaccio. He also shares chef tips for making food more delicious, and health tips for making dishes more nourishing. A perfect book for anyone who wants elevated food that's also gut-health-driven. Real Food Heals: Eat To Feel Younger and Stronger Every Day by Seamus Mullen ($35)
Go With Your Gut: The Insider's Guide to Banishing the Bloat With 75 Digestion-Friendly Recipes by Robyn Youkilis
Celebrity nutritionist Robyn Youkilis (her fans include Scandal's Katie Lowes and Lea Michele) is beloved by her clients for her mix of best-friend affability and hard science, and both elements shine in this cookbook. All of the recipes are designed to boost digestion, fight bloating, heal gut lining, and generally get your gut in top form, since, as Youkilis says, when that happens, the rest of the health pieces typically fall into place. The recipes are delicious and super accessible (they won't take hours or require you to trek to multiple grocery stores to hunt down hard-to-find ingredients), and the text is filled with small, easy-to-digest (see what we did there?) tips that will actually change your gut health—and your life. Go With Your Gut: The Insider's Guide to Banishing the Bloat With 75 Digestion-Friendly Recipes by Robyn Youkilis ($22.95)
The Low-FODMAP Diet Step by Step: A Personalized Plan to Relieve the Symptoms of IBS and Other Digestive Disorders by Kate Scarlata and Dede Wilson
A low-FODMAP diet has become clinically common for treating IBS and other severe digestive issues (you can read one writer's personal experience with it here). Low-FODMAP dieters avoid types of carbohydrates (Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Monosaccharides And Polyols, hence the acronym) that can ferment in the gut and thus cause upset and issues. This book, which has become a staple for the community, not only explains the diet in detail but offers 135 delicious recipes that adhere to the somewhat tricky restrictions (onion and garlic aren't allowed, which knocks off many even health-minded cookbooks out there). It also includes step-by-step instructions for doing an elimination diet and reintroducing potentially problematic foods, so you can know for sure if FODMAPs are at the root of your tummy troubles. The Low-FODMAP Diet Step by Step: A Personalized Plan To Relieve the Symptoms of IBS and Other Digestive Disorders by Kate Scarlata and Dede Wilson ($23.99)
The Plant Paradox Cookbook: 100 Delicious Recipes to Help You Lose Weight, Heal Your Gut, and Live Lectin-Free by Steven R. Gundry, M.D.
Steven Gundry, M.D., made waves in the wellness world when he suggested that lectins, proteins found in legumes, cashews, tomatoes, and more, are responsible for many of the health woes in the modern world, including gut troubles (he shares more about this on the mbg podcast). With so many foods off the table on a lectin-free diet, it can be tricky to know what to eat—which is where this cookbook comes in. With over 100 totally lectin-free recipes, you'll be armed with everything you need to experiment with cutting the protein from your diet and seeing how you feel. There are recipes for vegans and omnivores, and the ingredient lists are short and filled with items easily found at typical grocery stores. The food is creative and comforting—think Brazilian cheese bread and Cream of Mushroom soup. The Plant Paradox Cookbook: 100 Delicious Recipes To Help You Lose Weight, Heal Your Gut, and Live Lectin-Free by Steven R. Gundry, M.D. ($32.99)
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Liz Moody is an author, blogger and recipe developer living in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated with a creative writing and psychology degree from The University of California, Berkeley. Moody has written two cookbooks: Healthier Together: Recipes for Two—Nourish Your Body, Nourish Your Relationships and Glow Pops: Super-Easy Superfood Recipes to Help You Look and Feel Your Best. She also hosts the Healthier Together Podcast, where she chats with notable chefs, nutritionists, and best-selling authors about their paths to success. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Glamour, Food & Wine & Women’s Health.