- Heather Woodruff
Top 10 Healing Foods for IBS
A brand new client of mine recently told me how she had stopped going out for dinner with her husband and friends because she found the menus depressing. What she meant by this was that every time she sat down at the table and opened the menu she was terrified to eat anything. She knew more than likely that she would be at home later that night, on the couch, nauseous and cradling a painfully cramped belly.
While it’s important to pinpoint our unique gut triggers with zero doubt, we can really get hung up on the food we CAN’T eat. But it’s just as important to add in gut healing foods so that you can repair that temperamental belly and have a powerful digestive tract that can handle going out to dinner every time.
Try and include at least 1 of these gut healing goodies per meal or snack…
Gut Healing Foods for IBS
1. Colorful veggies: veggies are full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Especially the yellow/orange ones which are high in vitamin A and support the mucosal lining of the digestive tract. Cooked veggies are much easier to digest than raw veggies (soups over salads my friends!)
2. Quality protein: Protein is the building blocks for healing and rebuilding everything structural in the body: skin, hair, nails, immune cells, bones, and of course our digestive tract! Good options are pasture raised meats (poultry, beef), eggs, wild fish, seafood, lentils, quinoa, sprouted nuts and seeds.
3. Nourishing Fats: Are in every single one of our cells, especially our brain cells and is especially nourishing for our intestinal cells! Good Choices are sprouted nuts and seeds, cold water fish, avocados, eggs (yolk!), coconut, olives, flax oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, ghee, etc
4. Homemade Bone Broth: There is so much gut healing goodness I can rave about with homemade bone broth; it’s gentle and easy to digest, contains glycine which enhances our digestive secretions (allows us to digest our food more easily) and is full of glutamine which is the primary fuel for our intestinal cells (they can’t work, heal or thrive without fuel!). Try my Healing Chicken Bone Broth recipe.
5. Fermented Foods: you guys already know how I am obsessed with the microbiome (aka: the colony of health promoting bacteria residing in your colon). Well, we need to introduce these ‘good bugs’ into our gut daily and the best way to do this is via fermented foods. Good options are: sauerkraut, lacto-fermented veggies (like pickles), miso, low sugar kombucha and plain full fat yogurt or kefir (if dairy is not one of your triggers). Try my Sauerkraut Fried Rice Recipe!
6. Low sugar fruit: low sugar fruits like berries and apples are great for supporting digestive health though we do want to keep high sugar tropical fruits to a minimal. For those with severe tummy troubles you may want to cook your fruit like in an apple sauce.
7. Herbal Teas: ginger, turmeric and peppermint are extremely beneficial for calming the belly, relieving nausea and decreasing overall inflammation.
8. Water: Keeps the body hydrated and things moving through the digestive tract. Filtered is best (rather than bottled). Aim for a few large mason jars a day (aka: my cheap plastic-free water bottle)
9. Psyllium husk or ground flax seed (for constipation): Amazing for bulking the stool and get you pooping! A couple tablespoons in a big ‘ol glass of water per day is a good place to start. Precaution; I usually do not recommend psyllium or flax for those who are experiencing diarrhea or loose stools. It can be too stimulating and actually make those symptoms worse. Join the Natural IBS Support Facebook group for a video on how to make my amazing constipation tea!
10. Coconut: Helpful for nourishing the gut and rebalancing the gut microbiome due to is anti-microbial, anti-yeast qualities (it kills the bad bugs!). Try cold pressed coconut oil, fresh coconut, shredded unsweetened, full fat coconut milk. Download my FREE Meal Plan for 3 days worth of IBS healing recipes here: