7 Foods to Include and 7 to Avoid for a Leaky Gut

7 Foods to Include and 7 to Avoid for a Leaky Gut

Chiropractic Kirkland WA Foods for Leaky Gut

By: Dr. Michelle Irwin

Merriam-Webster dictionary defines digestion as the process of making food absorbable by mechanically and enzymatically breaking it down into simpler chemical compounds. Simple enough right: eat the food, break it down, absorb it in the intestinal tract, and use it for your body. Why is it then that so many of us suffer from digestive issues?

Digestive complications are so common that almost every other commercial on TV is for some digestive medication to help us continue to eat things that are not good for us. They have catchy jingles that even run through my head every time I think about this subject.

The most common issues we hear about can be boiled down to “Leaky Gut” or holes between the cells of the intestines.

The links between cells are known as tight junctions which “glue” these cells together. In people with Celiac disease and other intestinal complaints these junctions come apart, allowing a large amount of indigestible gluten fragments to seep into the underlying tissue and incite immune system cells leading to inflammation of the gut.

Coming into the holiday season and colder weather we are going to be faced with choices about what foods we are going to eat.

For me, the following list has me trying to find new ways to make some of my favorite cold weather foods while helping to heal my gut.

Foods that lead to Leaky Gut and to use sparingly or avoid all together: “NAUGHTY LIST”

  • Refined carbohydrates - white bread and other processed foods.
  • Cereal grains.
  • Sweeteners (artificial).
  • Bad vegetable oils- canola oil, margarine, and “vegetable” oil.
  • Legumes- beans, lentils, peanuts, peas, chickpeas, soybeans, green beans, kidney beans, etc.… these are high in protein but also carbohydrates.
  • Dairy products.
  • Soda, juice, and alcohol.

I have good news though! I also have a list of foods that decrease leaky gut: “NICE LIST”

  • Non-starchy vegetables- artichokes, asparagus, brussels sprouts, broccoli, carrots, mushrooms, onions, salad greens, squash, tomato, and others.
  • Some fruits- berries, citrus fruits, peaches, plums, apricots, cherries, and pears.
  • Grass fed meats, free range poultry, and wild caught fish.
  • Range fed eggs.
  • Natural healthy fats - olive oil, avocado, palm oil, coconut oil, and grass-fed butter.
  • Some nuts and seeds - almonds, cashews, pistachio, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds.
  • DRINK WATER - good rule of thumb is about half your body weight in ounces of water a day.

We can limit the negative effects of the holidays by choosing fewer things from the “Naughty list” and surround them with more from the “Nice list”.

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