Here is a simple outline that I have created of a diet that supports the gut!
Base your diet around animal foods such as meat, poultry, organ meats, eggs and dairy. These are easier to digest and have a high nutrient density. Do your best to buy high quality such as ‘pasture’ and ‘grass fed’ but this isn’t essential if on a budget.
The food group I think it is most important to avoid are seed oils such as canola, vegetable, sunflower, safflower etc. Use saturated fats such as animal fats, butter, ghee, coconut oil. Olive oil is fine. These are part of the polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) they damage the gut, increase endotoxin and mess up your metabolic health. If you are eating out, buying takeaway or buying pre-prepared meals you will have a hard time avoiding these in your diet. I would also minimise nuts and seeds for this reason. They are also challenging on digestion.
Choose carbohydrates that are easy to digest, contain minimal anti-nutrients and do not provide too much fermentation in the gut ie. minimal fibre. I would focus primarily on fruits and well-cooked starches/underground vegetables. I would avoid foods that will irritate the gut such as grains, beans, legumes, nightshade vegetables. If you would like to still include some grains in your diet I would stick with white rice. Green vegetables are fine but should be kept fairly low and should be cooked. Fermented food is good but avoid too much soy-based.
Certain foods have positive antimicrobial properties and are encouraged. A shaved raw carrot salad with apple cider vinegar and cooked mushrooms have been shown to benefit the gut. Certain supplements have similar benefits such as spore-based probiotics, colostrum, glycine.
An example diet day may look like this:
- Breakfast: 3 eggs omelette with mushrooms and goats cheese. Some Pâté on side.
- Lunch: Salmon with shaved carrot salad. Piece of fruit.
- Dinner: Mincemeat, sweet potato, zucchini, asparagus.
- Snacks: Context-specific but cheese, fruit and milk preferred