22 tips for a healthy gut and digestion

Jessica Sepels wise words of advice.

Here are Jessica's tried-and-tested remedies for improving your digestion and keeping the health of your gut in good condition.

1. Learn to love apple cider vinegar: Consume one tablespoon in warm water upon rising or use as salad dressing. This stimulates the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, which aids digestion.

2. Consume lemon juice in warm water: It’s best to do this upon rising as it stimulates the gastric juices.

3. Take probiotic supplements: Probiotic supplements help to repopulate the gut with good bacteria.

4. Eat probiotic wholefoods: Sauerkraut, kimchi and kefir are wonderful probiotic foods that are found at most health food stores.

5. Eat prebiotic wholefoods: Foods such as onion, garlic, dandelion, greens, artichoke and bananas feed and support the growth of good bacteria in the gut.

6. Remember to take supplements: Consume digestive enzymes, probiotics, slippery elm and or glutamine for good gut health. A nutritionist or naturopath can support you with these supplements.

7. Eat slowly in a relaxed environment: The blood diverts away from the digestive path in times of stress.

8. Don’t drink with your meals: Water dilutes the gastric juices that are vital for the break down of our food, so have a big glass of water 20 minutes before your meal, and wait 20 minutes after you’re finished eating to have another.

9. Cut back on gluten-containing foods: The gut just does not love the protein found in gluten.

10. Drink aloe vera juice in the morning: Your health stores will assist you finding this. It is very soothing for the gut.

11. Start each meal with something raw: Starting each meal with a fresh salad gets your digestive enzymes fired up and ready to break down your food. I often chomp on a celery stick or cucumber before my meals.

12. Chew your food 10 to 20 times: Yes, before you swallow! You will put much less pressure on your digestive system by breaking the food down in your mouth.

13. Activate your nuts and grains: Soaking nuts and grains removes the nutritional inhibitors and phytic acid that the body struggles to break down.

14. Learn to love sprouts: Sprouts are rich in enzymes and are a wonderful accompaniment for fresh salads.

15. Alkalise your body: Avoid acidic foods and drinks such as alcohol, caffeine, sugar, salt and wheat. Also, stay away from the processed and packaged foods – sugar feeds the bad bacteria.

16. Lay off the antibiotics: They affect the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut.

17. Eat fruit on an empty stomach: Fruit ferments in the stomach and can irritate your digestion.

18. Drink up: Sip on filtered water, if possible. Fluid helps to remove excess waste and keeps our bowels healthy.

19. Sip on chamomile tea: It soothes and relaxes the bowel wall and aids constipation!

20. Increase your fibre intake: This not only keeps your bowels moving, but also helps eliminate excess hormones. Love your flax and leafy greens- they are high in fibre! Or add psyllium husk to your breakfast.

21. Eat enough protein and good fat: My latest book and online program will guide you on which foods contain protein and fat. You should have protein and fat at each meal.

22. Don’t eat late at night: Aim to eat two to three hours before bed time to allow time for digestion.

NEXT: Read all about Jessica's top tips for nourishment. 

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The information presented on this website is not intended as specific medical advice and is not a substitute for professional medical treatment or diagnosis. Read our Medical Notice.