Forget supplements, because there are a plethora of gut-health giving pantry staples that are much cheaper than anything you’ll find at the chemist. Dietitian Geraldine Georgiou explains.
Aussies are becoming more aware of their overall health and are investing in supplements that promise better gut balance. Recent research commissioned by Kellogg’s found 55 percent of us believe maintaining good gut health is a priority for overall wellness, but many think they need to spend big to achieve it, and this just isn’t the case
There are everyday foods that work just as well for our gut health and, in some cases, better. A simple first step to looking at the food you consume and eating adequate fibre.
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Prebiotic fibre continues to be one of the most effective ways to maintain good gut health. Research from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has shown that a lack of dietary fibre and whole grains is the leading dietary risk for chronic disease, but nearly half of Australians don’t consume enough prebiotic fibres because they don’t know what they are and where to get them outside of supplements.
In fact, pantry staples are a perfect way to tap into the gut health trend that’s easier on the wallet. Whole grains, fibre-rich cereals, canned beans and legumes continue to be one of the most effective ways to support good gut health due to their levels of prebiotic fibres.
You can replace products regularly found in chemists like gut primers, kombucha, prebiotic and probiotic supplements with pantry staples like high-fibre cereals, wholegrains, fruits, vegetables and legumes.
This is what a typical day could look like:
- 1 bowl of wholegrain cereal.
- 1 cup of low-fat milk.
- 1 piece of small fruit 3g.
- 1 piece of small fresh fruit.
- 1 small handful of nuts.
- 100g tuna (in brine), salad (1 cup of veggies – ½ tomato, 2 leaves of lettuce, 5 slices of cucumber) and low-fat cheese melt.
- 2 slices of grainy bread
- 1 piece of small fresh fruit
- 200g of lean protein (lean red meat, fish, chicken or pork)
- 1 -2 cup of cooked vegetables
- 1 medium potato (with skin)
Geraldine Georgeou is an accredited practicing dietitian with more than 25 years of experience and is the author of The Australian Healthy Skin Diet and co-author of The Gut Foundation Cookbook.