Do you feel like your gut could use a little extra support?
Maybe you’re experiencing symptoms like excess gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, stomach pain or other issues that could be related to your gut?
As you may know, my goal with the 14-day smoothie challenge is to promote health and weight loss with delicious & gut friendly smoothies.
Gut friendly smoothies are a top priority for me because I truly believe that all health begins in the gut — and by healing and supporting our gut, we can optimize our health and prevent & reverse illnesses.
I come from a long history of IBS, so I’m always experimenting with different ways to support my gut. I’ve discovered that adding certain ingredients into my smoothie is not only an effective way to promote gut health, but it’s super easy too!
The best part is, these foods & supplements will have little impact on the flavour or texture of your smoothies. Feel free to add as many of these ingredients as you’d like — your gut will love you for it!
5 Gut Healing Smoothie Ingredients
#1 COLLAGEN POWDER
Collagen is an essential component for healing and sealing the gut. Besides providing the building blocks for new collagen in the body, the amino acids delivered by hydrolyzed collagen support gut health.
For example, glutamate and arginine (and possibly methionine, cysteine and threonine) optimize the immune functions of the intestine. They also help to maintain the integrity, growth and function of the intestine. The amino acids methionine, threonine, arginine, serine and proline all support intestinal mucosal healing. Glycine, has been shown to reduce inflammation.
Collagen supplementation can help a number of gastrointestinal disorders, such as leaky gut syndrome and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
#2 L-GLUTAMINE POWDER
Glutamine is the most important and commonly used nutritional substance to repair tissues, particularly high turnover tissue such as the cells of the intestinal lining.
The surface area of your gut is lined with a type of cell known as enterocytes. L-glutamine is considered an essential amino acid because your body uses so much during times of intense physical stress. It is essential for maintaining the health and growth of enterocytes in your gut since it is the preferred fuel of these cells.
Glutamine deficiency can cause severe intestinal degradation and supplementation can enhance intestinal healing and repair.
Add 1 tsp. to your smoothie. Get a high-quality l-glutamine powder here.
#3 KEFIR OR YOGURT
Fermented foods are rich in probiotics which help restore a healthy gut microbiota and intestinal barrier.
According to Isolauri, Salminen, (from the Nutrition, Allergy, Mucosal Immunology and Intestinal Microbiota Research group), immune regulation in the gut depends on the establishment of the healthy gut bacteria.
The factors that contribute to leaky gut tend to produce inflammation and improper functioning of the mucous layer that protects the cells of the gut from damage. Medical experts suspect that probiotics’ role is to reduce these factors and therefore protect the gut.
Yogurt and kefir can provide probiotics in abundance. However, make sure you’re not struggling with histamine intolerance before increasing your intake of these foods, as fermented foods can exacerbate symptoms. I recommend a good quality unsweetened coconut kefir or yogurt.
Add 1-2 tbsp. to your smoothie. My favourite coconut kefir is from Healing Spirit Nutrition (available at Nature’s Emporium & Ambrosia).
NOTE: If fermented foods do not work well for you, try a broad-spectrum, high-quality probiotic. Here is one that I recommend.
#4 SLIPPERY ELM POWDER
Slippery elm is a herb that contains mucilage, a substance that becomes a slick gel when mixed with water. This mucilage coats and soothes the stomach and intestines, promoting the healing of ulcers and inflamed tissue, and reducing cramping by relaxing the intestines.
Slippery elm is ideal for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diverticulitis and diarrhea.
Add 1/4 tsp. to your smoothie. Find slippery elm powder here.
#5 MARSHMALLOW ROOT POWDER
Marshmallow, like slippery elm, is a herb that contains mucilage, producing a thick sticky substance that coats membranes.
Marshmallow extract also contains flavanoids, which contain anti-inflammatory properties. The flavanoids are able to reduce inflammation while the mucilage holds them in place and prevents further damage.
Marshmallow helps restore integrity of the gut lining making it beneficial for people suffering from leaky gut and other forms of inflammatory bowel diseases, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
Add 1/4 tsp. to your smoothie. Find marshmallow root powder here.
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