I’ve been immersed in the healthy food world for years, and I’m still mind-blown regularly by how much more knowledge is out there. With the world’s best M.D.s, R.D.s, and chefs at my fingertips (and as part of the amazing mbg Collective), I was able to answer pretty much every healthy eating question that came across my desk this year—and learn things I didn’t even know to ask. From the world’s best chef sharing the one food he uses to make everything taste good to renowned functional doctor Frank Lipman sharing what we’re all getting wrong about eating healthy fats, this was the best healthy eating advice of 2018.
Fiber is magic for constipation. It helps to remove toxins, facilitates intestinal movement, and protects your digestive tract from inflammation, injury, and disease. Most American women consume only about 14 grams of my recommended 35 to 50 grams of fiber per day. Fiber also aids in weight loss and maintenance because it can curb your appetite by helping you feel full, and it helps dispose of estrogen to keep you in the fat-burning zone. Not bad, right? Fiber-rich foods include quinoa, legumes, berries, and green leafy vegetables. Keep in mind that it can be challenging to eat your daily fiber minimum, so you might need to supplement with a fiber blend. Whether you use food or supplements to get your fiber, I recommend increasing fiber intake by a maximum of 5 grams per day, starting at 20 grams on Day 1. If you get gassy, scale back and increase more slowly.
They activate bitter receptors on the tongue, which in turn activates cells in your stomach to normalize acid production for better digestion. When this happens, bile production and digestive enzyme production are improved as well. Proper bile production is essential for detoxifying the liver, excretion of heavy metals from your body, hormone balance, and bowel regularity. Digestive enzymes are essential for extracting and absorbing nutrients from your food. They can also help to reduce the number of unfriendly bacteria in your intestines. Finally, bitter foods also tend to be rich in antioxidants, which help to reduce inflammation.
—Charles Passler, M.D., in The Weird Food Supermodels Eat For Great Digestion, Balanced Hormones & Glowing Skin
Having these types of building blocks in your larder makes cooking easier. When you have sushi, you dip it in soy sauce (a fermented food), and it makes the sushi better. You can have a bowl of steamed spinach and you add some fermented food to it, and it tastes super delicious.
This content was originally published here.