Here are some of my tried and true methods for restoring balance:
Amaranth. Amaranth is a high-protein, gluten-free grain indigenous to Mexico. Rich in dietary fibers and essential amino acids, amaranth can lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure, boost the immune system, increase energy, and strengthen bones. This amaranth porridge is a powerful way to kickstart the day.
Kombucha. A happy pairing of bacteria and yeast, a good swig of kombucha can bring your digestive system back up to full performance. It’s also chock full of the enzymes our bodies use to detox, helps reverse the effects of candida (yeast) overgrowth, relieves arthritis, and can increase energy levels. As tempting as it may be, keep in mind that you should not shake kombucha before drinking, since that upsets the delicate ecosystem within the bottle.
Miso. While most people hear miso and immediately think “sushi appetizer,” there’s a lot more to this paste than a salty soup. A fermented soy product, miso is full of micro-organisms that help our bodies process proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. It also contains lactic acids that promote a healthy environment for digestion. Miso is a great addition to salad dressing and sauces, but if you want to stick with soup, make sure to add the miso last, once the broth has been removed from the heat, so you don’t kill the bacteria.
Pickles. Consuming lacto-fermented pickles (which don’t have to be cucumbers, by the way) is a great way to bring lactic acid, active cultures, and enzymes into your digestive system. Pickling vegetables also helps reduces the impact of harmful compounds like oxalic acid found in beet greens and increases the bodies ability to absorb minerals like iron by breaking down phytates.
Seaweed. I was hesitant about seaweed when I was first introduced to it, but now I can’t imagine giving it up. Full of a range of vitamins, including the hard-to-come-by B12, seaweed can help your digestion, regulate your blood sugar, strengthen your nails and hair, improve thyroid function, and relive stress, among countless other benefits. One of my favorite seaweed dishes is hiziki (or hijiki) caviar served on a cracker.
What food remedies work best for you?