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The Go-To Vegetable for Gut Health

0 2 years ago

By Samantha Boesch

Your daily diet directly impacts your gut health, which can affect many different aspects of your health. But sometimes, it can be difficult to know the best foods to eat for your gut.

As a baseline, whole foods that are high in fiber usually help keep your gut happy. For example, fruits and vegetables (and some whole grains) contain polyphenols, which are compounds that improve your gut barrier.

And while eating plenty of vegetables and fruit can provide you with healthy fibers and nutrients to help your gut, research has shown that leafy green vegetables can specifically help feed the good bacteria in your gut and improve your overall gut health.

It’s time to saute some kale or make a delicious spinach salad because leafy green vegetables (think spinach, kale, Bok choy, collard greens, etc.) can help your gut bacteria in a unique way.

A study published in Nature Chemical Biology found that these leafy greens contain a unique sugar compound called sulfoquinovose (also known as SQ, because “sulfoquinovose” doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue). The good bacteria in your gut feeds on SQ for energy, so when you’re eating leafy greens, you’re essentially feeding the good bacteria in your gut microbiome.

What happens when we feed the good bacteria in our gut? The more energy that these good bacteria have, the more they’re able to build the protective barriers in our microbiome that are needed for keeping the bad bacteria at bay and stopping them from growing and multiplying.

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