Clean Eating vs. Clean Gut
When it comes to attaining optimal health, there are many options as to what you stick in your pie hole. You’ve all heard of clean eating and probably have a friend or two that have done a gut cleanse, but do these approaches matter? Let’s take a deeper dive so that we all understand the differences before choosing what’s right for your gut health.
Here’s what you need to know.
Clean eating is a diet, or simply, a way of eating. It’s all about consuming whole foods that are minimally processed and as close to their natural form as possible. Think: broccoli, beef, and blueberries, not Doritos, Oreos, and pizza. Clean eating involves some principles that go hand in hand with the basic principles of healthy eating:
You get one body – the one you’re living in right now – and it needs fuel. That’s what food is, fuel. The best way to nourish that meat sack is to provide it with the nutrients that it needs to run efficiently. It’s like your Ferrari – are you going to put shitty gas in that thing of beauty just because someone invited you and your car over for some cheap fuel? No. Focus on eating delicious meals that include all of the major food groups: protein, healthy fats, complex carbohydrates (if you swing that way), and fruits and vegetables.
What the hell is a whole food anyway? Whole foods are unrefined, unprocessed, and often organic. They also don’t contain artificial ingredients or preservatives. On the other hand, processed foods are refined, processed, and often contain unhealthy additives. Flip that package over, if the ingredient list contains a bunch of shit you don’t recognize, put it back on the shelf.
When you’re clean eating, you’re not necessarily counting calories or restricting your intake. Instead, you’re focusing on eating high-quality, nutrient-dense foods. These types of foods are generally lower in calories and can create a feeling of fullness that keeps hunger at bay longer than refined foods. Settle down, it’s not a free-for-all, calories do matter.
While clean eating is a step up from the Standard American Diet (SAD), it doesn’t guarantee a healthy gut.
The gut hosts trillions of bacteria, and an imbalance of gut bacteria has been linked to various health problems, including obesity, diabetes, mood and skin disorders, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBS).
A healthy gut is crucial for good health, so it’s important to make sure that your gut bacteria are in balance. Gut Health Testing is the first step we do with every client. Once we know what’s up in that gut, we can work towards rebalancing it. After that, it’s all about maintenance, which is simple with a clean gut diet. By keeping your gut microbiome optimized, you can improve your overall health and live a longer, sexier life.
The clean gut diet eliminates foods that promote inflammation and the growth of harmful gut bacteria (we’re looking at YOU, sugar). Gut health foods are also generally light and easy to digest. This is often combined with nutritional supplements to support the function of the digestive system.
If you’re trying to reboot your gut health, you may be considering a cleanse. While a cleanse can give you a short-term relief, there are better ways to improve your gut’s health for the long term.
For instance, fiber is important for your gut’s wellness. Aim to get 25-30 grams of fiber per day, along with sufficient water. No, seriously, this shit matters.
If you want to give your digestion a rest, consider smoothies. Sign up for my newsletter, and you’ll get our free Smoothie Guide to Weight Loss and Healthy Digestion. Go ahead and download it and get to blending up some good gut shit.
Increasing resistant starch can also be helpful for gut health. This type of carbohydrate is beneficial for the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. And unlike psyllium husk fiber supplements – where you know there’s going to be a major bathroom shitstorm, you just don’t know when – resistant starch is nice and gentle and provides unaggressive poops.
Probiotics are also important for gut health. These are live microorganisms found in fermented foods like sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi, and yogurt. The products in the refrigerated section are still going to have live cultures, the crap on the shelf will not. And here’s where testing is important… certain bacteria produce histamines and if you have bacterial overgrowth in those bacteria, you’d want to skip the fermented foods until you murder those bacteria. Or your life will suck.
Adding polyphenols to your diet can also be helpful for the gut. These are plant-based compounds that may promote the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. Some good sources of polyphenols include cacao, blueberries, cranberries, pomegranates, and green tea.
Finally, if you’re constipated and need a periodic clean-out, consider a vitamin C flush. (we use Perque Potent C Guard.) Need help figuring all this shit out? We can help you create a personalized plan to improve your gut health and overall wellness. Contact EverVital Nutrition today!