food journal

HAPPY GUT

happiness

HOW TO HAVE A HAPPY GUT?

What have you been eating while staying at home? When eating at home and working from home during Covid-19, colorful meals seem a happy gut choice. As the saying goes, we’re what we eat. So, why not eat healthy food that makes us happy. From the book, Happy Gut, what makes our gut happy is sugar-free and gluten-free whole foods. Meanwhile, yoga and meditation are a big plus to get a stress-free gut.

Simply put, HAPPY GUT = HAPPY MEALS + YOGA! That’s how I sum up the key ideas from the book. The first part of the book talks about the science and biology of how the gut works. If you’re into the details, check it out. I’m more into the actual work that leads to a happy gut so I did an experiment to see how happy my gut could be. Will my gut be happy after a new diet?

First, I homemade happy gut meals that are made of sugar-free and gluten-free whole foods. To be honest, I have no fancy cooking skills. As long as the food is boiled until cooked with oil, salt, and pepper, I think I’m done. Dicing the veggies, making them warm, and adding seasoning are my cooking skills at their best.

Second, I did mindful eatingfocusing on the food only and being grateful. No TV, no radio, no cellphone, no chatting, or any other entertainment. I stopped doing everything but eatsmelling the food, watching the food, tasting the food, chewing, and swallowing. This makes me think I’m no different from a cow chewing slowly in the countryside. The only difference is I’m inside and it’s outside.

Third, I tried to drink a cup of water at least 30 mins after a meal as suggested, for not diluting the stomach acid. But I did take a sip of water to rinse my mouth when I finish eating, for the sake of not having bad breath. Too much detail here. I better stop. Anyhow, the key point is I drink between meals, not during meals.

OK, how do I feel and how does my gut feel with the new diet and yoga practice or workout? I pay attention to my gut feelings and I have noticed these changes:

1 Less brain fog after meals

2 My stomach feels less full and gets hungry soon

3 My waistline is the same

Overall, a happy gut diet makes me feel good as I can think with clarity most of the time! Also, I’ve made sure the food is colorful so it looks happy and boosts my good mood. I didn’t follow the exact recipes or the supplement suggestions from the book Happy Gut as they’re complicated to me. So I keep the main concept of gluten-free and sugar-free whole foods and make a simple version.

For dinner, I choose low cabs green veggies, and meat. As dinner looks repetitive, I have no photos for the record. But I have snapshots of breakfast, lunch, and snacks in my food journal. Total gluten-free is a challenge indeed because I eat gluten food by default. So I cheated one day. Scroll down to see if you can find which day I had gluten. 😛

Day 1

Breakfast: blue berry + chia seed
Breakfast: blue berry + chia seed

Lunch: sweet potato + tomato +cucumber
Lunch: sweet potato + tomato +cucumber

Snack: boiled egg + cucumber
Snack: boiled egg + cucumber

Day 2

Breakfast: apple + chestnut
Breakfast: apple + chestnut

Lunch: pumpkin + chicken breast + mushroom + cherry tomato
Lunch: pumpkin + chicken breast + mushroom + cherry tomato

Snack: boiled egg
Snack: boiled egg

Day 3

Breakfast: oat + goji + black sesame
Breakfast: oat + goji + black sesame
Lunch: sweet potato + garlic shrimp + mushroom scramble egg + cucumber
Lunch: sweet potato + garlic shrimp + mushroom scramble egg + cucumber
Snack: banana
Snack: banana

Day 4

Breakfast: orange + date
Breakfast: orange + date
Lunch: Wonton (gluten!) + cherry tomato + cucumber + broccoli
Lunch: Wonton (gluten!) + cherry tomato + cucumber + broccoli
Snack: hummus + bell pepper
Snack: hummus + bell pepper

Day 5

Breakfast: weird coconut milk + dragonfruit
Breakfast: weird coconut milk + dragonfruit

This drink’s color and taste is so gross! I swear a lot while forcing myself to finish half. And the coconut milk makes me sick!

Day 6

Lunch: fried egg + zucchini + pumpkin + bell pepper
Lunch: fried egg + zucchini + pumpkin + bell pepper
Snack: apple
Snack: apple

Breakfast: goji + oat + black sesame (my mum prepares this for me every morning)
Breakfast: goji + oat + black sesame (my mum prepares this for me every morning)
Lunch: avocado + shrimp + mushroom + cherry tomato
Lunch: avocado + shrimp + mushroom + cherry tomato
Dinner: fried rice with pork + avocado + bell pepper

Day 7

Breakfast: goji + oat + black sesame
Breakfast: goji + oat + black sesame
Lunch: salmon + avocado + cucumber
Lunch: salmon + avocado + cucumber
Snack: Macadamia nut + pecan
Snack: Macadamia nut + pecan

AND MORE

A happy mind will help our gut to stay happy too. From time to time, practicing yoga and meditation to declutter the thoughts in our mind will make a positive impact. Solve for happy!