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3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health and Boost Immunity

3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health and Boost Immunity

The 3 simple dietitian-recommended easy ways to improve gut health and boost immunity today.

Improve your immunity! 3 EASY WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR GUT HEALTH RIGHT NOW | @tspcurry Info on: prebiotics, probiotics, kefir, fiber

Do you ever think about your gut health?

I’ve been thinking more about my ‘gut’ – AKA digestive system – since reading the book The Good Gut by Justin and Erica Sonnenburg, PhDs. Here’s why:

Keeping the gut healthy can actually strengthen your immune system. Our large intestines – where the majority of our microbes reside – is 5 feet long making it one of the largest organs in our immune system.

3 Easy Ways to get a Good Gut | @tspcurry

And the good bacteria or ‘pets’ as the Sonnenburgs call them, that live in our gut help fight off many of the bad bacteria that enter our bodies. So, a healthy gut could mean:

  • Less sickness from the likes of the common cold
  • Fewer symptoms from seasonal allergies
  • Less chance of developing allergies among infants
  • And amazingly, even less autoimmune and chronic disease

I learned a ton from the Sonnenburgs, who are respected Stanford University microbiologists. And I’d recommend The Good Gut to everyone as a fascinating read – or listen on Audible – which is what I did. (And then halfway-through listening, I bought the hard copy so I could actually highlight text) But if you won’t get around to reading the book till you’re sitting on a beach somewhere (Deanna!) here are:

My Top 3 Ways to Improve Your Gut Health Right Now:

1) Eat More Fiber. When I asked, ‘What would you recommend to help people improve their gut health?’ to a group of dietitians on Facebook, ‘More fiber!’ was the most popular answer. Indigestible roughage or fiber that humans cannot use for nourishment is actually the food or nourishment for good gut bacteria. It’s the prebiotics that probiotics feast on

3 Ways to Get a Good Gut | @tspcurry

Eat fiber at every single meal and snack. Healthy gut bacteria may even be another reason why folks who eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains have less chronic disease like cancer and diabetes.

2) Don’t Stress About Dirt. In other words, being a neat freak has it’s downsides in terms of health. Bleach-powered home cleaners are probably overkill; more microbe-friendly cleaners are vinegar and lemon juice. (THANK YOU Justin and Erika for releasing some of my #momguilt!)

3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health Right Now | @tspcurry

The Sonnenburgs recommend:

  • Don’t worry if dirt gets tracked into your house
  • It’s OK to play with the family dog and not wash your hands
  • Let your kids play in the dirt
  • If it’s not a choking hazard, let babies experiment with objects by putting them in their mouths.

I know with my own kids, my fourth kid gets sick less. Maybe because with more kids, I just couldn’t keep up with the hand-sanitizing after all dirty encounters. But it’s also a fact that our house has more dirt with more kids around. (#KeepingItReal) 3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health Right Now. 1 way may surprise you! via @tspcurry Click To Tweet

3) Drink Kefir

Kefir is sometimes described as drinkable yogurt – although it’s not really yogurt. It’s a dairy beverage with probiotics in it.

But unlike yogurt, which usually contains 4-6 probiotic strains and/or cultures (see below) kefir generally has 10 or more, plus yeast – another culture to build up gut bacteria.

How to Make Homemade Kefir | @TspCurry

If you’re new to kefir, here’s the scoop:

  • It’s found in the dairy case.
  • There are a variety of flavors. Most are fairly low in added sugar – but flavored kefir does have more added sugar than plain kefir.
  • Besides drinking it straight up, use kefir:
    • On cereal instead of milk
    • Instead of buttermilk in baking
    • Mixed into soups after cooking (to cool hot soup for kids!)
    • In smoothies
    • Any way you’d use yogurt


3 Easy Ways to Improve your Gut Health Right Now | @tspcurry

Kim-NutritionPro Consulting

Wednesday 6th of April 2016

I can't wait to try the homemade kefir. Using it in place of buttermilk is genius.

Serena Ball

Friday 8th of April 2016

We don't always have buttermilk - but we do have kefir! So it's been nice to have for baking...and making salad dressings like our fave homemade RANCH DRESSING. Thanks Kim!


Tuesday 5th of April 2016

Very helpful post, Serena! Thanks for the encouragement to keep working on eating a variety of fiber rich fruits and vegetables, including the "easily available ones" like prunes, bananas, lentils, etc. Excited to try more Kefir and learn how to make it from you! Now I can remind my 4 kiddos part of why we don't seem to get as sick as our classmates is our diet of good bacteria. (:


Tuesday 5th of April 2016

I still haven't tried kefir, but you gave some great ways to try it. So now I need to buy some. I'm looking forward to reading about how making making it at home went!

Serena Ball

Tuesday 5th of April 2016

Kefir is definitely worth the cash to purchase, April. And yes, please come back tomorrow to get the scoop on how to make kefir...I was amazed by how easy it was!


Tuesday 5th of April 2016

Totally found this post very interesting and I will try the Kefir, with sugar :), Loved the mud face of you little darling. Even though I am a nurse my kids had the fun of being kids--no dirt barred.

Serena Ball

Tuesday 5th of April 2016

Glad you were able to expose your kids to dirt! (:


Tuesday 5th of April 2016

Great article, Serena! I am going to pass this along to my hubby. I know he will find it very interesting and helpful.

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