Updated: Jun 20, 2022
I’m passionate about eating nourishing food to feel good, stay well and keep my family healthy.
In this newsletter I will show you quick and easy ways to use these delicious (and mostly shop-bought and easy to find) probiotic and immune-boosting food products filled with beneficial bacteria.
I know that with all the information out there about healthy food it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming, so if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to message me. I’ll be very happy to help!
An incredible amount of ongoing research is looking into the link between gut health and overall wellbeing. Results show that gut health is crucial for general health, your immune system and so much more.
You may have heard the gut being referred to by scientists as your "second brain".
The science suggests that fermented foods are brilliant for keeping you healthy. This makes sense because, if you look back in time, many cultures have eaten fermented foods for thousands of years.
If you want to boost the good micro-organisms in your gut and improve digestion, vitamin absorption and immunity, see below for the best food products that can help! We adore sauerkraut, kefir water, kefir yoghurt, kombucha, bone broth, gelatin and collagen. Thankfully, these products are now available to buy if you don’t want to make your own.
You’ll be surprised that kids like most of them (kombucha drinks taste like fizzy drinks and good sauerkraut is refreshing and crunchy and tastes like pickles).
Compared to other yogurts, kefir has a wider, more abundant, variety of probiotics, nutrients and vitamins.
Fermented milk with lots of good bacteria, kefir yoghurt tastes like most plain/Greek yoghurts.
You can always serve it with fresh fruit, low-sugar compote, nut butters or raw honey to naturally sweeten it if it’s too sour. It also works well as a base for dips.
Water kefir is a probiotic beverage linked to various health benefits. Dairy-free and vegan-friendly, this tasty beverage, that I’ve been making at home for years, contains tons of beneficial bacteria and yeast.
We have our own water kefir grains that we simply strain and drink every other day (you can buy grains online but they multiply quickly so I hand them out to local family and friends!).
We then feed it with sugar and fresh filtered water and repeat. The liquid is like sour apple juice, slightly fizzy and 2 out of 3 of my kids love it! You can also find it for sale in more and more shops.
Kefir ice cream
The health benefits of kefir but in frozen treat form!
It’s now even possible to buy kefir-based ice lollies and ice cream!
Most are very low sugar compared to other icecream brands, full of gut healthy bacteria and most people will never even know if you don’t tell them what you are serving them!
Sauerkraut is a good source of fibre, vitamins such as vitamin K2, and minerals. The fermentation makes it easy to digest and it contains beneficial probiotics.
Sauerkraut is so easy and quick to make (just shredded cabbage and salt mixed together!) but also there are many brilliant, delicious brands you can buy now.
It’s a no-cook side dish that is instantly ready when you want to eat!
Kombucha is a fermented tea that has been consumed for thousands of years. It's rich in beneficial probiotics and contains antioxidants.
When we are out and about, I’m happy that there are now often kombucha-based drinks to give my kids, which are far healthier and have less sugar than most fizzy drinks and juices. Flavoured with fruit and full of probiotic goodness, it’s a fizzy treat that avoids a huge sugar crash.
You can also use it to make these delicious lollies.
Bone broth is rich in minerals, healthy nutrients, vitamins, amino acids, and essential fatty acids. Drinking bone broth daily can help support joint, skin and gut health. It's also versatile, delicious and easy to incorporate into a variety of different recipes like this and this, which is why whenever I have roast chicken bones, I throw them in my slow cooker to make bone broth. You can add seaweed to the water for extra nutrients.
For centuries bones have been simmered to get the goodness from inside. Rich in collagen which nourishes the intestinal lining and helps reduce inflammation, it's easily digested and is soothing to the digestive system, unlike many other foods that can be difficult to fully break down.
Not only is it great for you but reduced down and with a splash of cream added, it tastes fantastic and makes a delicious sauce (jus) similar to what you might have had in restaurants with steak!
Gelatin is rich in protein, antioxidants and calcium and it has a unique amino acid profile that gives it many health benefits.
Not only does gelatin make fun sweets and desserts, but it's full of amino acids, and the proteins it contains can help support the intestinal wall, including building the protective mucus lining.
One of the amino acids in gelatin, called glutamic acid, is converted to glutamine in the body. Glutamine has been shown to improve the integrity of the gut wall and help prevent “leaky gut”.
Collagen has the same health benefits as gelatin. The only real difference is that it doesn't set food the way that gelatin does.
Below you'll find links to some more of my favourite recipes for gut health:
1) Gut-healthy Snicker bars
2) Radishes with whipped kefir yoghurt
3) Coconut chia breakfast pots
4) Rainbow jellies
5) Homemade chocolates
6) Pomegranate herbal sweets