Maintaining a good gut health diet - interview with Rachel Larsson

Maintaining a Good Gut Health

We've been speaking to Rachel Larsson, a Melbourne based practicing Naturopath and Nutritionist about gut health. Last week we asked her what foods we should eat for good gut health.

However, knowing what to eat doesn't always means we stick to eating what's good for us. This week we ask Rachel:

What have you seen is the biggest challenge people face when it comes to eating more of the foods that are good for our gut-health? Do you have any tips to overcome this challenge?

Rachel: People are creatures of habit and being time poor are real challenges. However, I often see a lot of people who actually can’t tolerate foods that are good for their gut. If you have a condition such as SIBO or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, then you may have reactions or intolerances to these wholefoods.

If you do find you can’t have fibre in your diet then you really need to seek help, because it's not recommended to stay on a restricted diet, such as a low FODMAP diet, as a long-term solution.

Doing so means that you miss out on a lot of foods required for good gut health. In diets such as FODMAP where you avoid highly fermentable prebiotic foods your good gut bugs aren’t getting fed the necessary prebiotic foods that will keep them alive and your gut flora healthy. So it’s really important to seek help for this.

It’s also important to re-introduce high-fibre foods that are good for your gut slowly because your gut needs time to adjust. To go from 0 to 100 with your  fibre intake is going to leave you pretty farty and your gut bugs will be stirred up, which is not the most comfortable way to achieve good gut health.

My tip on introducing fibre is to take it one meal at a time - this also makes it an easier habit to maintain long-term. For example, work on just amping up your breakfast to begin with. Have oats for breakfast or add some nuts and seeds to your oats. If you’re having toast then choose a dense, grainy bread and add avocado or spinach rather than just jam.

Once you’ve started eating a better breakfast then you can work on how you snack, and once you’ve fixed that, then you can start thinking about lunch and then dinner. Choose one meal and focus on that. This takes away that Mount Everest-thought of having to make huge changes.

Next week Rachel shares with us her her thoughts on "superfoods" and people's enthusiasm for them.

Rachel specialises in holistic gut health, IBS, SIBO, food allergies and intolerances. We love that she is particularly passionate about helping people heal their gut, calm their minds and fall in love with food again. Find her on Instagram @rachel.larssonFacebook and at www.rachellarsson.com.au

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