Recently we shared the ins and outs of leaky gut syndrome. It’s something many of us can have. Even if we don’t have a full fledged case of it, it’s going to help to follow a type of ‘cleansing’ diet to get your body on track.
The diet for leaky gut is almost exactly the same as a candida diet. In many ways candida and leaky gut weave into each other, so too does an anti-inflammatory diet. They all have similarities, namely they cut out all the crap and really clean things up!
Something we all need to do from time to time, if not for good, right?!
Foods To Avoid on A Leaky Gut Diet
One of the major contributors to the development of leaky gut in the first place is a poor diet – you know the typical Western diet full of processed and packaged foods.
And if you’ve followed Good Food Eating for sometime you’ve probably heard me harp on about pro-inflammatory foods. Really we’re talking about the same foods here. Foods that lead to increased inflammation are the types of foods that also lead to leaky gut.
The top 5 foods to avoid are:
- Sugar – all forms – the point is we just consume way too much of the stuff, period!
- Refined and processed grains – white rice, white flour, white bread, white pasta, pastries, cakes, microwave meals, crackers, biscuits, and so forth.
- Cheap cooking oils and unhealthy fats – safflower, soy, sunflower (if organic, it is a better option), corn, cottonseed, peanut, rice bran, vegetable oil, canola oil, and all types of margarine.
- Trans fats – fried foods, fast foods, commercially baked goods, and items prepared with partially hydrogenated oil, margarine and vegetable oil.
- Artificial sweeteners, food additives, preservatives – aspartame (aka Equal and Nutrasweet), saccharin (aka Sweet N Low), and acesulfame K (aka Sweet One), MSG (monosodium glutamate), hydrolyzed vegetable protein, food coloring, glutamate, parabens, yeast and so forth, plus the long list of preservatives.
Basically we’re just talking about all the types of ingredients we find in the thousands of ‘food items’ we find lining supermarket shelves. They are parading as foods but they are not real food!
Leaky gut diet allowed foods
- Loads of veggies – these should form the basis of the plan. Mostly above ground veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, cucumber, lots of leafy greens and so forth.
- Organic butter
- Clean proteins – no antibiotic hormone residues so free range chicken, grass fed beef and so forth.
- Healthy fats – olive oil, coconut oil, walnut oil, macadamia nut oil, flaxseed oil and avocado.
- Green tea
- Sweet potatoes and yams
- Make your own salad dressings
- All raw nuts and seeds except peanuts and pistachios – only a small handful a day, approximately 1/4 cup.
- Coconut milk or almond milk
- Coconut water
- Herbal teas
- Guacamole – make your own.
- Apple cider vinegar
- Medicinal mushrooms – maitake, shitake, chaga, reishi.
- Fresh or dried herbs and spices
- *Gluten free whole grains – brown rice, quinoa, millet, amaranth, buckwheat and steel cut or gluten free oats.
*Note: Some people may need to exclude grains altogether. Start with going gluten free because gluten absolutely crosses the intestinal barrier, then if necessary move to the next step and exclude grains altogether.
What do you notice from that list? It’s all healthy, whole foods. Real foods!
That’s the point of any good diet really. Just focus on eating stuff your great, great grandmother would recognize and you’ll be on easy street!
Specific foods that heal leaky gut
I guess you could say that these are the superfoods for leaky gut because they help seal the intestinal wall, reduce inflammation and increase the beneficial gut bacteria, restoring balance and function.
- Bone Broth – As Dr Axe says “broth contains collagen and the amino acids proline and glycine that can help heal your damaged cell walls.” Check out a bone broth recipe here.
- Green Leafy Veggies – these are nutritional powerhouses and we need to get more of them for the high amounts of nutrients, enzymes, and compounds they contain.
- Fermented Foods – sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt, kefir, miso, and apple cider vinegar. Asian people eat a lot of this stuff, guess they know something we don’t!
- Sprouted seeds – full of life force and ample amounts of fiber that help promote beneficial gut bacteria.
- Omega 3 fatty acids – omega 3 fats calm inflammation and rebuild healthy cell walls. Food sources include chia, flaxseed, salmon, sardines, walnuts, tuna.
As you can see from this list of beneficial superfoods for leaky gut, it’s all about reducing inflammation in the gut, increasing the beneficial gut bacteria, and helping the cell wall to repair.
By eating this type of healthy anti-inflammatory diet you’ll find yourself feeling great in no time at all!
CANDIDA MEAL PLAN: Heal Your Leaky Gut
The only real difference is you can include fermented foods on a leaky gut diet, while with candida it’s often best to exclude them for a while.
If you’re ready to get on track, Try my 5 Week Candida Meal Plan.
There’s tons of awesome recipes, tips, snacks, and more to help you eat well every day and put your leaky gut in check!
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