The 4 Gut Health Mistakes Experts Want You To Leave Behind In 2021
If you've been reading mbg for some time, you know we're all about nourishing the gut as a way of supporting full-body health. We frequently dive into the many ways to do so, from enjoying a varied diet to taking a probiotic supplement.* But as it turns out, there are a few gut health mistakes that we want to pay attention to, as well. Here, we've compiled the biggest faux pas we'd like to leave in 2021:
Eliminating all foods that cause digestive discomfort.
Gastroenterologist Will Bulsiewicz, M.D., will be the first to tell you that the tendency to eliminate any food that causes gastrointestinal discomfort can be counterproductive in the long run (assuming the discomfort isn't due to an intolerance or medical issue, in which case it's best to follow your doctor's instructions). The reason for this has to do with the way eliminating specific food groups (plants and gluten come to mind) can negatively affect gut microbiota since their benefits are eliminated, too (for example, fiber).
Thinking fermented foods are the only ways to support your gut through food.
When integrative gastroenterologist Marvin Singh, M.D., joined us on the mindbodygreen podcast, we were thrilled to hear he recommends eating cruciferous vegetables to promote gut health. They support digestion and can even help with bloating, in addition to providing the body with prebiotic fiber to nourish good bacteria in the gut. His favorite leafy green is arugula, which also provides calcium, potassium, folate, vitamin C, vitamin K, and vitamin A—not bad for a single ingredient!
Selecting a less-than-ideal probiotic.
With so many probiotics on the market, it can feel overwhelming to choose the best option for you. Fortunately, experts like integrative physician Robert Rountree, M.D., have provided some tips to make the process easier. The one that stood out to us the most? Selecting a probiotic with targeted strains, each of which performs a different function in the gut.*
It's worth noting that our probiotic+ supplement contains four science-backed strains that help ease bloating, support digestion and regularity, and promote a healthy weight.*
Eating when stressed.
Our emotional state while we're eating can actually affect how our food affects us. Naturopathic doctor Serena Goldstein, N.D., explains that stress can affect our digestion, as blood and energy are sent to more immediate bodily functions. This can then cause that food to sit in the gut for longer. While it's not always possible to feel completely serene when eating, it's worth trying to consume meals mindfully when we can.