The more we learn about the gut, the more we realise how important it is. Along with digestion, gut health has been linked to mental health, skin health, immunity and more. I like to say that ‘gut health is the foundation of good health’. When our gut is healthy, our overall health improves and our other systems are positively impacted. We’re also better able to absorb the nutrients in the foods that we eat. After all, if we go to the effort to fuel our body with nutritious real foods, we want to make sure we’re getting the most out of them.\nThere are many ways that we can support the health of our gut. A great place to start is by eating real foods (and products made up of real foods), while minimising processed foods, avoiding artificial ingredients and limiting the amount of added sugar that we consume. Along with real foods, some key things to incorporate when focusing on gut health include dietary fibre, prebiotics and probiotics.\nDietary fibre is the component of plant foods that our body is unable to digest. This indigestible fibre acts as a broom for our digestive tract, helping to sweep food along, while adding bulk to our stool and supporting healthy and regular bowel motions. As fibre is a carbohydrate, this is one of the reasons why we shouldn’t exclude carbs from our diet. There are two main types of fibre, soluble and insoluble. We get these from wholegrains, legumes, nuts, seeds and fruits and vegetables (particularly when the edible skin is left on). Resistant starch functions in a similar way to dietary fibre and can be found in cooked and cooled potatoes and wholegrains.\nPrebiotics and probiotics are both staples when it comes to having a healthy gut. Prebiotics are food for our gut microbiome, while probiotics are the healthy gut microbes themselves. Our gut microbiome is made up of trillions of microbes, including bacteria and fungi. It is involved in digestion, immunity and even manufacturing certain nutrients and neurotransmitters. Consuming probiotics helps colonise our microbiome with healthy bacteria, while prebiotics fuel the microbes living in our gut. Sources of prebiotics include garlic, onion, leek, asparagus, Jerusalem artichokes, chicory root, oats and more. While probiotics can be found in fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, kefir, yoghurt and miso.\n \nAs we can see, there are particular foods and types of foods that support the health of our gut. Let’s dive deeper and explore the best gut loving products:\nFermented Vegetables\nLike other fermented foods, fermented vegetables are a great source of probiotics. When vegetables are fermented, they retain their vitamins and minerals while lasting for longer. Be sure to keep your fermented veggies in the fridge to preserve the healthy microbes and get the most out of these products. Fermented vegetables can come in variety of forms, some of the most common types are sauerkraut and kimchi, but there are also fermented vegetable pastes that can be used to flavour our dishes while giving us the probiotic benefits.\n \nTry these fermented vegetable products to support the health of your gut:\n \nNaked Harvest Very Vanilla Gorgeous Greens\n\nGreens powders are a fantastic way to boost our vegetable intake and help us get more of the benefits of these nutritious foods. A good greens powder will be predominantly made up of green veg and be free from additives, fillers and artificial ingredients. Fillers are a common offender in greens powders because they’re generally a cheap ingredient that bulks up the product. Some greens powders, like the Very Vanilla Gorgeous Greens from Naked Harvest, contain other beneficial ingredients like flaxseed fibre and ginger, both of which are great for our gut. Green powders can act a bit like nature’s multi-vitamin and can be a great addition to anyone’s diet. \nThe Broth Sisters Fermented Chilli Paste\n\nIngredients: Red chilli (49%), extra virgin olive oil, Mt Zero Pink Lake salt, garlic\n \nCeres Organics Sauerkraut\n\nIngredients: Certified Organic White Cabbage 99%, Sea Salt\n \nFermented Drinks\nFermented drinks like kombucha and kefir are another source of gut-loving probiotics.\nKombucha is a fermented tea drink. It contains healthy microbes that can go on to colonise our gut, along with antioxidants that can prevent free radical damage. During the fermentation process of kombucha, acetic acid is produced. This acid is said to be able to kill potentially harmful bacteria, giving kombucha an anti-microbial effect.\nA fermented milk drink, kefir is produced with kefir grains. While mostly seen as fermented milk, there are also water and coconut varieties. Depending on the type and brand, kefir can come in a runny consistency (which is able to be drank as it is), or it comes in a thicker, more yoghurt-like texture.\n \nEnjoy sipping on these fermented drinks knowing they’re supporting the health of your gut:\n \nMad Millie Kefir Kit\n\nRemedy Kombucha Ginger Lemon\n\n\nIngredients: Certified organic raw kombucha (sparkling water, wild kombucha culture, black tea*, green tea*), ginger juice*, natural sweeteners (erythritol* and steviol glycosides*), lemon juice*, natural ginger flavour. *Certified Organic Ingredients\n \nNexba Nootropics Gut Tropical\n\nIngredients: Purified Sparkling Water, Apple Cider Vinegar, Nexba Natural Sweetener Blend (**Erythritol, Stevia), Food Acids***, Natural Flavours, Probiotic Culture (Bacillus Coagulans)\n \nBone Broth\nMade by simmering the bones and connective tissues of animals, bone broth is a gelatinous soup that is said to support our intestinal lining and digestion. Bone broth itself is very easy to digest while being highly nutritious. The animal bones and connective tissue contain an array of vitamins and minerals that leech into the end product, allowing us to gain the benefits and nutrients with every sip. The collagen found in these animal parts turns into gelatin upon cooking, which in itself is beneficial for gut health. Amino acids like arginine and glycine, which we’re able to get through bone broth, may lower inflammation and as a result help prevent chronic diseases.\n \nKeen to start incorporating bone broth? Try these options that we’re currently loving:\nUndivided Food Co Good Bones Chicken Broth\n\nIngredients: Certified Organic Chicken Bones and frames from Inglewood Farms, free from hormones and antibiotics, Filtered water, free from added chemicals like fluoride and chlorine, Certified Organic, Australian-grown vegetables and herbs including carrot, onion, garlic and seasonal herbs, Bio-dynamic apple cider vinegar, Olsson’s 100% sea salt.\n \nNutraorganics Beef Bone Broth - Turmeric\n\nIngredients: Grass Fed Beef Bone Broth Powder (Beef Bones, Filtered Water, Apple Cider Vinegar*, Himalayan Salt, Hydrolysed Collaged) (90%), Tapioca Starch*, Deactivated Savoury Flakes, Turmeric Powder* (2%), Black Pepper.\n \nGelatin\nGelatin naturally absorbs liquids, which is why it thickens and becomes a jelly-like texture. If you’ve made bone broth and stored it in the fridge, you’ll have seen how it congeals and becomes a gelatinous texture. Gelatin is essentially this, it has been removed from the broth and dehydrated into a powder form.\nAs gelatin binds water, it’s able to have the same effect in the digestive tract. This supports digestion and keeps everything moving through efficiently. Because gelatin contains the amino acid known as glutamine, it is also suggested that it can support the integrity of our intestinal lining, making it strong and less permeable.\n \nGelatin can be used to make healthy jelly, lollies or gummies. Grab one of these and give it a go:\n \nNutraviva NesProteins Beef Gelatin (Grass Fed)\n\nIngredients: Grass fed, grass finished, 225 bloom bovine gelatin\n \nNutraorganics Natural Gelatin\n\nIngredients: 100 % Australian Bovine Gelatin\n \nAloe Vera\nA medicinal plant that has been used for thousands of years, aloe vera has a variety of beneficial properties. We know the soothing effect aloe vera can have on sunburn externally, but did you know that it can have a similar soothing impact on our intestinal lining? Some even say that it is beneficial in the treatment of gut conditions such as IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). Regardless of whether or not you have a gut condition, aloe vera can be good to incorporate to support intestinal health.\n \nTry these aloe vera products and enjoy the benefits:\nAloe Vera of Australia Natural Aloe Vera\n\nIngredients: 100% Pure Aloe Vera Barbadensis Miller Extract, Cold-Pressed Inner Leaf Juice\n \nAloe Vera of Australia Digestion Green Tea Aloe Vera\n\nIngredients: aloe vera pulp, apple concentrate, green tea, ginger, marshmallow root\n \nPrebiotics\nIngredients such as chicory root and pectin (the fibre found in apples) are considered to have prebiotic effects. This is because they act as fuel for our gut microbes and support a healthy microbiome. By providing our gut bugs with the fuel they need, they’re able to function more efficiently and support our overall health.\n \nThese products contain prebiotic ingredients to feed your healthy gut bugs:\nFunday Sweets Sour Vegan Gummy Bears\n\nIngredients: Soluble Fibre From Tapioca Starch (IMO), Chicory Root Fibre, Rice Starch, Gelling Agent (Pectin), Food Acids (Citric, Fumaric, Malic), Natural Colours (Concentrates of Spirulina, Safflower, Carrot, Pumpkin and Red Beet), Rice Flour, Natural Flavours, Natural Sweetener (Stevia), Glazing Agent (Carnauba Wax).\n \nKintra Foods Roasted Dandelion Blend\n\nIngredients: Roasted Dandelion Root (wild harvest), Roasted Chicory Root\n \nStress Busting Tonics\nStress can be detrimental to our gut health because when we are stressed our digestive function is not prioritised. If our sympathetic nervous system is activated, we are in the state known as ‘fight or flight’. During this time, we’re on high alert and our body is focused on survival. For this reason, it doesn’t prioritise functions such as digestion. When our body feels that we are safe, our parasympathetic nervous system kicks in and puts us into ‘rest and digest’ when our digestive system can get back to working optimally and other functions proceed as normal.\n \nIn order to support healthy digestion, it’s beneficial for us to reduce our stress levels. We can do this in a number of ways, including calming tonics like the below:\nMrs Toddy’s Chill Out Tonic\n\nIngredients: Filtered Water, Lemongrass, Galangal, Lemon, Butterfly Pea, Chamomile, Coconut Blossom Nectar, Star Anise, Clove, Juniper Berries, Cinnamon, Hemp Oil.\n \nTurmeric\nKnown for its anti-inflammatory benefits, turmeric contains a compound called ‘curcumin’, which is responsible for these beneficial properties. Inflammation is a contributing factor of many conditions and can impair our gut function. Reducing inflammation supports our gut, while preventing us from being susceptible to a number of chronic health issues. Enjoying turmeric is a tasty way to reduce inflammation. To get the most out of this medicinal spice, consume it with some red pepper to increase the absorption.\n \nHere’s a tasty paste we’re loving to help us boost our turmeric intake:\nThe Broth Sisters Turmeric \u0026amp; Ginger Paste\n\nIngredients: Fresh ginger 25%, turmeric 25%, MCT oil (fractionated coconut oil), black pepper, added water.\n \nGut Lovin’ Supplements\nSometimes we need a little boost of gut loving ingredients, all packaged up in one easy to consume supplement. Supplements that are formulated specifically for gut health can be great because they tick a number of the boxes when it comes to gut loving ingredients. Don’t be afraid to incorporate supplements and powders to give your gut a bit of extra love.\n \nBoost your nutrient intake with the following gut loving supplement:\nATP Science Gutright Daily - Raspberry Flavour\n\nIngredients: Apple Fibre, Rosella powder, Natural Raspberry Flavour (Gum acacia), Xanthan Gum, Malic Acid, Cacao fruit powder, Beetroot juice powder, Schisandra berry extract, Pomegranate fruit peel and pericarp powder, Cranberry powder, Broccoli sprout powder, Black Cherry fruit powder, Nutmeg powder, Ginger root powder, Rosemary leaf powder, Cinnamon bark powder, Stevia rebaudiana, Acai berry powder, Daikon radish fruit powder, Kale leaf and sprout powder.\n \nSlippery Elm\nGenerally sold in a powdered form, slippery elm comes from the bark of a slippery elm tree. This bark powder is known to have soothing effects on the intestinal lining and can help reduce irritation. There are some studies showing that it can be helpful towards reducing symptoms of certain gut conditions, including IBS.\n \nExperience the benefits of slippery elm through products like these:\nLotus Slippery Elm Bark Powder\n\nHealth Kultcha Motion Potion\n\nIngredients: Certified Organic Psyllium husk powder - ultra fine, wild-crafted Slippery elm, wild-crafted Marshmallow root, certified Organic Barley grass, certified organic wheat grass, certified organic rosehips, wild-crafted citrus bioflavonoids, certified organic linseed, certified organic ginger, certified organic symbiotic blend of friendly bacteria from a process which contains: Lactobacillus; Acidophillus, Bifidus, Plantarum, Delbrueckii, Casei, Bulgaricus, Caucasicus, Fermenti, Brevis, Helveticus, Leichmannii, Lactis, Sporogenes. Saccharomyces: Boulardii \u0026amp; Cerevisiae\nAs we can see, there are many ways that we can support the health of our gut. Between eating real food, incorporating fibre, prebiotics and probiotics and enjoying any of the 10 gut-loving products above, we’ve got ourselves covered. With gut health playing such an integral role to other systems and our overall health, there’s no better day to give it some extra love than today!\n\n*****\nhealth-kultcha-motion-potion-3-tubs-of-150g\nroasted-dandelion-blend-100-roasted-natural-root-150g\nfunday-sweets-sour-vegan-gummy-bears-50g\naloe-vera-of-australia-digestion-green-tea-aloe-vera-1l\nnutra-organics-natural-gelatin-gut-digestive-health-unflavoured-250g-powder\nnutraviva-nesproteins-beef-gelatin-grass-fed-450g\nundivided-food-co-good-bones-100-organic-chicken-bone-broth-250ml\nthe-broth-sisters-fermented-chilli-paste-170g\nmad-millie-kefir-kit\nremedy-ginger-lemon-250ml-can-4x250ml\nceres-organics-sauerkraut-680g\n#####\nAbout the author: Shahna Sarpi is a qualified nutritionist that is on a mission to help people live a nourished life through real food and healthy habits. She loves simplifying food labels and helping people make healthier food choices. Shahna is passionate about spreading the real food message and supporting people in living a healthy life.