For as long as we can remember, germs and bacteria have been considered the enemy. Until that pivotal moment in the wellness world when – surprise – we finally started talking about the fact that, as in the case of fats, or cops, there’s such a good thing as a good one and a bad one. That was also the same time that we started really recognizing the fact that feeding the good bacteria in your gut is essential to keeping your gut and digestive health in good shape. Plus, there’s a ton of research to show that a healthy gut is also linked to your overall health in general, whether that means it’s boosting your brain function, keeping your weight in check, or fending off disease.
So now that we’ve got the benefits out of the way, you’re probably thinking to yourself, Oh, I better start showing my gut a little love. And that thought is followed, no doubt, with, Wait, how exactly does one show their gut a little love? Luckily, we’ve got a host of products that are tried and true gut-friendly additions to your regular wellness routine. Peep the picks here and get ready to get your gut feeling its best.
Health-Ade Kombucha, $24
When you’re looking for products that can help boost your gut health, one of the biggest things you’re going to be looking for is rich sources of probiotics. To that end, you really hit the jackpot with kombucha. The fermented tea, which is made by adding strains of bacteria, yeast, and sugar to green or black tea, is packed with the probiotics that your gut uses to boost its population of the healthy bacteria. As for why we opt for Health-Ade Kombucha in particular, we’re big fans of the fact that the tea comes in 100% glass amber bottles, which ultimately means there’s no nutrient- or benefit-leaching from plastic or metal bottles (!) and no sun damage to the raw ingredients if you bring your bottle out with you on a warm day (!!).
Siggi’s Skyr Icelandic Yogurt, $3
We used to think that yogurt was simply yogurt; that all yogurts were created equal, if you will. But all of that was before we got our hands on Icelandic yogurt, a moment which proved to us that there is, in fact, a yogurt spectrum of sorts, and on that spectrum, Icelandic falls somewhere between “wait, this is great” and “wait, it might be the best stuff we’ve ever tasted.” But the rich, creamy, and slightly sweet flavor profile of the yogurt aside, this stuff is pretty fantastic when it comes to gut benefits thanks to the probiotic cultures in skyr that not only boost the amount of healthy bacteria in your gut, but also boost your immunity and help your body utilize the nutrients.
WellPath RENEW Multi Collagen Protein Powder, $25
These days, there’s no shortage of information floating around about why you should be getting more collagen into your body – the benefits range from anti-aging to minimizing knee and joint pain – but here’s one more anyway, in case you were still teetering on the fence: collagen will give your gut a healthy boost. This is because the unique structural components and amino acid profile of collagen make it super effective in reducing gut inflammation, boosting digestion, and helping repair the lining of your intestines and stomach.
Brodo Bone Broth, $18
Another product that’s packed with collagen and that’s been having a prolonged moment on the wellness scene (presumably because it’s well-deserving of said moment) is bone broth. Basically, the gelatin in the bones that are most commonly used for bone broth (the knuckles, feet, and other joints, for the most part) can help seal up holes in your intestines that are at the root of a leaky gut. Not just that, but the collagen component also helps promote the growth of probiotics in your gut (once again, it’s all about that good bacteria) and support healthy inflammation in the digestive tract.
Mother-in-Law’s Kimchi, $7
Again, fermentation goes a long, long way when it comes to gut health (see: kombucha) because of the high probiotic content that these foods and drinks are usually packed with. On that note, kimchi makes for another impressive source of gut-friendly benefits, especially because the fermented cabbage is rich in lactic acid bacteria, specifically. This does everything from keep inflammation at bay and boost levels of gut health-promoting short-chain fatty acids to prevent harmful bacteria from colonizing your intestines.
Madécasse Pure Dark Chocolate, $3
Gone are the days when chocolate was considered an off-limits indulgence for those trying to maintain a healthy diet. Now, not only can chocolate be in the green healthwise, but in fact is even necessary for your health in some cases. Okay, well, not necessary, per se, but at least strongly recommended. When it comes to your gut, here’s the situation: dark chocolate is packed with fiber that easily moves through your digestive tract to make its way to your large intestine, where the probiotics in your gut can use it to fuel their own growth. Now, while this, unfortunately, doesn’t mean that we can say it’s “healthy” to indulge in a double chocolate brownie or some chocolate syrup on your ice cream, it does mean that you can enjoy a little dark chocolate to reap some major gut-healthy benefits.