Welcome to this week’s Wellness Wednesday. Today is a special one because not only am I sharing my personal story about digestion issues, but also a tummy soothing smoothie recipe and why I’m loving probiotics these days — and why you should too!
Let’s rewind back to 2011 to when my digestion was a complete disaster. I believe that stress, an eating disorder and lack of proper nutrition in my diet all played a big factor in destroying the good bacteria in my stomach. This led to stomach aches, major bloating, constipation (I said it), joint pain and the inability to fight off infections in my body.
I remember thinking to myself that it was really strange, especially since I was doing all the right things. I exercised, ate fruits and vegetables and lean protein; I limited sugar and ate every few hours. What was happening? Do I have cancer? Why am I bloated all the freaking time?
What I didn’t realize was that the only thing that was wrong was my ignorance towards nutrition and fueling my body. Eating a limited diet of egg whites, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, very little fat and copious amounts of vegetables had stopped my digestive system and organs from being able to function properly.
Now while those are all wonderful foods, they aren’t wonderful when you only live off of them (and when you eat too little of them). Now I realize this might be a different when you’re an athlete and eat this way for a reason (and eat enough!); however, I ate these foods, over exercised and exhausted myself to depletion. It was a terrible time in my life for both myself and loved ones; I hope to one day soon share my entire experience with you in an open-hearted post.
After understanding that I had an eating disorder and working towards getting better, I began to notice that my digestion was one hot mess. Once while on a vacation in Mexico, I remember being so bloated that I looked about 6 months pregnant (uhhh I wasn’t).
Building up my gut health
It was evident that I needed to start building up my gut health again, so I took it upon myself to do some research on the foods that are helpful to your overall digestive health & also started taking a daily probiotic.
While we’re on the topics of probiotics, I must tell you about the UP4 Probiotics I’m absolutely loving. They sent them to me a little over a month ago and are hands down my favorite probiotic ever. In general probiotics have been a wonderful addition to my digestive health routine and I believe they’ve helped my system to get back on track. The probiotics I take are specifically formulated for women to maintain our womanly balance and promote gut health, HOWEVER they do make a few different varieties. Tummy troubles begone!
BONUS! I’ve got a $5 OFF printable coupon for you to use at Target to grab some of these awesome UP4 probiotics.
In addition to adding probiotic to my diet, I’ve also done the following:
1.) Eat more organic plain yogurt or kefir. I want to avoid any sweetened yogurt, so greek yogurt or plain kefir tends to be best since it has lower sugar than its respective yogurt counterparts.
2.) Enjoy more fermented foods such as Kombucha, kimchi & sauerkraut. These are full of good for you bacteria for the gut. I do love a good kombucha or as I like to call them booch!
3.) Tummy soothing foods (like the tummy soothing smoothie!): Organic papaya, pineapple, ginger and mint. These are foods known to soothe tummy troubles, especially ginger!
4.) Prebiotic foods: garlic, artichoke, asparagus, onion, leeks. These foods are fuel for the good bacteria and can help it grow and flourish.
5.) Drink more smoothies! I try to incorporate feel-good tummy soothing smoothies into my diet as much as possible by including the foods and herbs that are known to help digestive issues.
Banana: Wonderful source of potassium, an essential mineral.
Pineapple: Helps you digest protein & contain the enzyme bromelain.
Greek yogurt: Full of probiotics.
Ginger: Used to reduce nausea or upset stomach, can help aid in digestion
Turmeric: A well-known anti-inflammatory
Chia Seeds: Contain omega-3s, fiber & protein
I hope you love this tummy soothing smoothie and a big thanks for letting me sharing my digestion story with you. Please feel free to add or share anything you’d like in the comments below!
P.S. Don’t forget to grab your $5 OFF printable coupon for UP4 Probiotics!
- Serves: 1 smoothie
- Serving size: 1 smoothie
- Calories: 149
- Fat: 2.4g
- Saturated fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 27.4g
- Sugar: 17g
- Fiber: 4.3g
- Protein: 8.1g
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 cup fresh pineapple
- 1/2 cup 2% or nonfat plain greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk, plus more if necessary
- 1/2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger or 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons of chia seeds
- Optional: A few fresh mint leaves
- Place all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses and enjoy immediately. Makes 2 smoothies.
This post is in partnership with UP4 probiotics. All text, recipes and opinions are my own! Thanks for supporting the brands that help make this site possible! xo.