Ilyas Memon, MD

Our Favorite Foods to Support Gut Health

Apr 02, 2024

Our Favorite Foods to Support Gut Health

Your gut health is more important than you know, and eating the right foods is essential for the fragile microbiome that keeps you healthy. Please keep reading to learn about our favorite foods that support gut health and improve your well-being.

Do you often feel bloated or have to run to the bathroom after eating? If so, you may be dealing with gut issues, which affect more than your stomach. Gut health encompasses the microbiome of good bacteria that lives in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract.

The bacteria and microorganisms that occupy the GI tract are essential for your overall health and well-being. When your gut is healthy, you reap the benefits of increased immunity, optimal metabolism, and good digestion.

Certain foods boost gut health, but where do you start? Dr. Ilyas Memon provides care for various GI issues at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants. He offers preventive tips to keep your gut in tip-top shape.

Why is gut health important?

Your gut health is more important than you think — it dictates many bodily functions and controls your metabolism. When your gut health isn’t what it should be, it shows in various ways, including bloating, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and constipation.

But why is gut health so vital to your well-being? There are many benefits to a healthy gut, and they include the following:

  • Improves depression and anxiety
  • Helps with immunity
  • Decreases overall inflammation
  • Decreases the risk of diabetes
  • It helps control obesity and metabolic issues
  • Improves liver health
  • It may help prevent inflammatory bowel syndrome (IBS) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Gut health is essential for the GI tract to function properly, breaking down food for nutrients during digestion and successfully removing waste products from the body. Optimal gut health is necessary for all of these functions to work correctly.

Foods that support gut health

Whether you’re dealing with abdominal issues or want to learn how to keep your gut healthy, there are some tips on eating correctly. What you eat affects your body in many ways, ultimately affecting your gut’s microbiome.

Dr. Memon provides healthy eating tips to keep you in shape, help with conditions like IBS or IBD, and create the optimal gut health you strive for. Our favorite foods that support a healthy gut include:


Fiber is an essential food source for your gut. It helps maintain the delicate microbiome and even decreases the chances of infection. Dietary fiber also aids in digestion and helps prevent constipation and other GI-related issues.

Fiber is found in many foods, including fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. Aim to add dietary fiber every day to keep your gut working well.

Fermented foods

Fermented foods are another essential aspect of gut health. Fermentation uses bacteria and yeast to break down sugars, which adds more good bacteria to the GI tract.

Eating fermented foods regularly helps decrease inflammation and adds to the microbiome. Types of fermented foods include yogurt, kombucha, kimchi, and fermented vegetables.

Omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are great for your overall health and improve the well-being of the GI tract. These fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids, which aid in enhancing good bacteria in the gut, decreasing inflammation, and keeping your gut strong and healthy.

Omega-3 fatty acids are found in various foods, including canola, soybeans, nuts, seeds, and cold-water fish like salmon and tuna.


Plants contain polyphenols and are difficult for the stomach to digest, so bacteria in the colon work to digest them. Polyphenols promote a healthy gut by improving gut bacteria and preventing harmful invaders from getting into the GI tract.

Polyphenols are found in many foods, including coffee, dark chocolate, soy products, spices, and various fruits and vegetables.


Water isn't simply essential to life — it's also necessary to keep your gut healthy and hydrated. Water helps with food digestion and prevents constipation by softening stools.

Drinking enough water is also essential to help fiber do its job and maintain a healthy gut. It may also reduce harmful bacteria in the GI tract.

What foods should I avoid?

Just as there are foods we support entirely for gut health, there are others that we want you to stay away from. While you don’t have to cut any food out completely, the following foods should be eaten rarely and in moderation:

  • Fried foods
  • Animal proteins
  • High FODMAP foods
  • Food with antibiotics
  • Sugary foods
  • Over processed foods

Limit these foods as much as possible. Many of the above foods aren’t suitable for the bacteria in the gut and lead to inflammation and an unhealthy immune system. Eating these foods may also cause cramping, diarrhea, and other GI-related symptoms.

Call Texas Digestive Disease Consultants in The Woodlands, Magnolia, and Willis, Texas, today to discuss your gut health or request a consultation on the website.