Renew your gut, clear your mind: 8 tips

Renew your gut, clear your mind: 8 tips

The gut-brain connection

"You are what you eat"

You've probably heard this age-old saying, right? Well, let me tell you, it's more than just words; it's a fundamental truth. Health truly begins in your gut. In your gut health AND your gut feelings. 

Studies have shown that there's a strong link between our gut health and our mental well-being. It works both ways, like a two-way street. For example, think about those "butterflies" in your stomach when you're nervous or the famous "gut feeling." Emotions can trigger physical sensations in the gut, and the gut can send signals to the brain too via the vagus nerve.

So, if you're experiencing emotional stress, anger, anxiety, or sadness, it can affect your digestive system, and the reverse is true.

This connection reminds us that taking care of our digestive health, especially when your mental health is at a low point, is crucial. A happy gut means a clear mind, and the same goes the other way around.

That being said, sometimes it helps to reset the gut to clear the mind.

Are you ready for...

THE GUT RESET

It takes between 6 weeks and 3 months for the gut to heal. In case of a reset I suggest doing the below for 10 days straight.

 
Clean up your diet of toxins.

To begin your gut reset, the first and important step is to avoid toxins like alcohol, caffeine, raised meats, grains, processed foods, and refined sugar. While these things might be tempting, they can be tough on your digestive system. I promise you, this challenge will be well worth it. Your gut will thank you in ways you might not even expect right now :).
Warm foods are your new friends.

Eating cold, raw foods slows down digestion, making it harder for the body to process the foods we eat. Avoid cold drinks, ice, cold smoothies, yogurt, raw fruits and vegetables. Go easy on (rice) crackers and granola. To heal, the gut needs warm foods. Have some gluten-free oats with warm apple with cinnamon for breakfast and eat mostly warm soups and stews

Fill the nutritional gap with pre- and probiotics.

To give your gut an extra hand, think about taking a good probiotic and feeding your bacteria with prebiotics (artichoke, asparagus, leek, oats). Prebiotics are fibers that feed the good bacteria in the gut. These probiotics in pill form (such as acidophilus, bifidobacterium lactis and lactobacillus) then team up with fermented foods (e.g. kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha) to fill your system with friendly bacteria, which is super helpful during the reset. I personally recommend taking SEED probiotics. 
Bone broth.

Now, let's talk about bone broth, a magical remedy for your gut. It not only contributes to healing your gut lining, but it also boosts your body's defences to prevent illness. During the gut-healing phase, aim for a daily bowl of bone broth before breakfast for best results.
Natural gut-healers.

Apart from bone broth, there are other natural remedies for your gut, such as Aloe vera, Vitamins A, C, and E, L-glutamine, and Omega-3 fatty acids. You can add these to your diet by eating non-starchy vegetables, high-fiber fruits, nuts and seeds and/or take them as supplements.
Drink plenty of (clean) water.


You might think it's a simple tip, but staying well-hydrated is very important for your digestion, to prevent constipation, and to maintain gut bacteria balance. Start the day with warm lemon water and ensure your water is clean by using filters to remove contaminants like chlorine and heavy metals. Oh, and don't forget to give your favorite water bottle a little extra love and clean it out every now and then :).

Improve your sleep hygiene.

We all know this, but somehow we tend to forget that sleep is essential for overall well-being. Ensuring you have good sleep hygiene habits can contribute to better rest and a healthier gut. Try avoiding caffeine after 1 pm, stop eating 2-3 hours before bed, turn off your electronics and dim the lights 1 hour in advance, journal your thoughts away, and maybe consider trying mouth taping and using a weighted blanket.
Try deep belly breathing.

Finally, deep belly breathing helps reduce stress and promotes relaxation. Since stress can negatively affect your gut health, regular deep belly breathing benefits your overall well-being and digestion. When you tend to forget, try setting an alarm 4-5 times a day, allowing yourself some moments for belly breathing in your - most likely - busy schedule.

 
Good luck! Wishing you all a healthy gut, a healthy mind and a healthy life.