Feeding Your Second Brain: Unlocking the Power of Gut-Friendly Foods for Optimal Health

A vibrant, close-up image of a variety of colorful, fresh fruits, vegetables, and fermented foods artistically arranged to form the shape of a healthy human gut, highlighting the connection between gut-friendly foods and overall wellness.

Welcome to the world of gut health, a burgeoning field of nutrition that’s capturing the attention of health enthusiasts and scientists alike. The gut is often referred to as the ‘second brain’ because of its profound impact on overall well-being, including mental health. As we peel back the layers on the importance of gut-friendly foods, we’ll explore how incorporating these nutritional powerhouses into your diet can lead to a symphony of health benefits.

Understanding the Gut Microbiome

The human gut is home to a complex community of over 100 trillion microbial cells, which have a direct impact on everything from your energy levels to the robustness of your immune system. Recent studies have illuminated the symbiotic relationship between these microbes and the host – that’s you! – suggesting that what we eat significantly influences the diversity and functionality of our gut flora.

Nourishing the Gut with Prebiotics

Prebiotics are the fuel that feeds the beneficial bacteria in our gut, and they come primarily from dietary fibers found in a wide array of plant-based foods. Foods rich in prebiotic fiber, such as onions, garlic, bananas, and the chicory root fiber found in Sabashi Foods snack bars, encourage the growth of friendly bacteria which in turn:

  • Enhance nutrient absorption
  • Improve digestion
  • Boost immune function
  • Regulate hormones

The Link Between Gut Health and Immunity

It’s not an overstatement to say that a well-balanced gut microbiome is a cornerstone of good health. With over 70% of the immune system residing in the gut, it’s vital to maintain an optimal environment for these microbes to flourish. Research has shown that a diet rich in gut-friendly foods can help in:

  1. Reducing the risk of chronic diseases
  2. Decreasing inflammation throughout the body
  3. Enhancing the body’s ability to fight off pathogens

Probiotics: The Friendly Forces

While prebiotics serve as food for beneficial bacteria, probiotics are the actual beneficial bacteria found in fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut. Including probiotics in your diet can help:

  • Restore the natural balance of gut bacteria
  • Prevent and treat diarrhea
  • Potentially improve mental health conditions

Practical Tips for a Gut-Friendly Diet

Adopting a diet that supports your gut doesn’t have to be challenging. Here are some practical tips to get you started:

  1. Include diverse fruits and vegetables that are high in fiber
  2. Add fermented foods like kimchi and miso to your meals
  3. Opt for snacks that combine both prebiotics and probiotics
  4. Stay hydrated to help fiber do its job effectively
  5. Choose snacks like Sabashi Foods bars when you need a convenient, gut-healthy option

By embracing gut-friendly foods, you’re not just feeding your body; you’re nurturing an entire ecosystem that plays a pivotal role in maintaining your health and vitality. Begin your journey to a happier gut today and witness the remarkable transformation in your health!

Discover more about how Sabashi Foods is pioneering the movement towards a healthier, more balanced lifestyle through their nutritious snack bars. Packed with gut-friendly ingredients like chicory root fiber, chickpeas, almonds, and mung beans, they’re the ideal choice for the health-conscious individual on the go. Elevate your snack game by choosing options that support your gut and your busy life!

Fasting: A new rage or an age old tradition?


Fasting : My observations.


You must have seen the fasting trend. Everyone is posting something online about how they have achieved all the health and body of their dreams by the miracle of fasting. There are so many choices, 16:8, 12:12, days of fasting, weeks of fasting, or water fasting. It seems that everyone is doing some form of fasting. When do you know it’s time for you to fast? Is it safe? How do I deal with hunger? What about migraine headaches or feelings of weakness? Shall I skip breakfast or dinner? So many questions and so many opinions.

I am going to make it easy for you to decide.

Fasting has been an integral part of almost all cultures. There are religious days or prayer days where the followers and devotees fast. Some do as a penance; some do as a matter of cleansing.

In the not-too-distant past, fasting occasionally would be involuntary due to famines, failure of crops, dry seasons, and locust infestations, and our bodies had evolved over thousands of years to deal with this. Now, we are in an eternal season of growth. We eat more than we need daily and the concept of not eating for a few hours seems so foreign. Have you seen the soccer parents at a local meet? They come armed with packets of juice, fish shaped snacks, cookies, and cupcakes lest their loved one wither away after a few hours of not eating and all the parents have parked their ample behinds on a foldable chair.

I often do colonoscopies and it’s an interesting conversation with my parents before we get them into the endoscopy lab. Some of them have not known hunger and experience that for the first time when they have not eaten overnight.

Whatever fasting modality you choose, you should be clear what’s the purpose of this fasting, how many hours per day you will fast, and also how long. How are you going to mitigate hunger that can come visiting unannounced and be very uncomfortable? How are you going to exercise your fasting muscles?

Purpose of fasting:

  1. Fat loss ( I do not say weight loss, who wants to lose muscle or bones or a vital organ?)
  2. Religious reasons
  3. Longevity

Length of fasting:

  1. Circadian
  2. 16:8
  3. 18:6
  4. 20:4
  5. Alternate day
  6. Prolonged fast


I fast from time to time but as a normal human, I experience hunger pangs, and weakness of spirit almost to the point of breaking my fast as food is so readily available.

As we progress through this series on fasting, I will start a 5 day fast and write down my experience, and thoughts and discuss the science behind fasting.

Fiber is not only for the gut!

Fiber is an essential nutrient that plays a critical role in maintaining good health. It is a type of carbohydrate that cannot be digested by the human body, but instead passes through the digestive system relatively intact. While most people are aware that fiber is important for digestive health, its benefits extend far beyond that.

One of the most significant health benefits of fiber is its ability to reduce the risk of heart disease. A number of studies have found that a high-fiber diet can lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure, both of which are major risk factors for heart disease. For example, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that people who consumed more than 25 grams of fiber per day had a 30 percent lower risk of heart disease than those who consumed less than 14 grams per day.

Fiber may also help to reduce the risk of dementia, a condition that affects millions of people around the world. A study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that a high-fiber diet was associated with a reduced risk of cognitive decline and dementia. The study followed more than 1,600 people for eight years and found that those who consumed the most fiber had a 50 percent lower risk of developing dementia than those who consumed the least.

One of the key ways in which fiber promotes good health is by promoting the growth of good gut flora in the colon. When fiber passes through the digestive system, it is fermented by bacteria in the colon, which produces short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs). These SCFAs are important for maintaining the health of the colon and promoting the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. Studies have found that a high-fiber diet can increase the production of SCFAs in the colon, which can have a number of health benefits.

In addition to promoting good gut flora, fiber is also important for maintaining regular bowel movements and preventing constipation. This is because fiber absorbs water in the digestive system, which helps to soften the stool and make it easier to pass. A diet that is high in fiber can also help to prevent other digestive problems, such as hemorrhoids and diverticulitis.

There are two main types of fiber: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber dissolves in water and forms a gel-like substance in the digestive system, while insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and passes through the digestive system relatively intact. Both types of fiber are important for good health, but they have slightly different benefits.

Soluble fiber is particularly important for reducing cholesterol levels and preventing heart disease. This is because soluble fiber binds to cholesterol in the digestive system and prevents it from being absorbed into the bloodstream. Some good sources of soluble fiber include oatmeal, apples, pears, and beans.

Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, is important for promoting regular bowel movements and preventing constipation. It can also help to reduce the risk of colon cancer by keeping the colon healthy and preventing the growth of cancerous cells. Some good sources of insoluble fiber include whole grains, nuts, seeds, and vegetables.

It can help to reduce the risk of heart disease, dementia, and other chronic diseases, while also promoting good gut flora and regular bowel movements. The recommended daily intake of fiber varies depending on age and gender, but most adults should aim to consume at least 25 grams per day.

Some simple ways to increase your fiber intake include adding more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to your diet, and snacking on nuts and seeds. It’s also important to drink plenty of water when consuming a high-fiber diet, as this can help to prevent digestive problems.

15 Reasons for being a vegetarian

I think there are two varieties of vegetarians, those who will and have never eaten dead animals and then there are those who will eat small amounts of meat from time to time. Choosing not to eat meat can be difficult for many reasons. We do not live in a time where we must procure our own meat by killing it. I suspect if we were to be transported to a time where we must procure our own meat a large majority of us will have to reduce the amount of meat we eat.

I have noticed that some vegetarians and vegans walk around feeling important and more worthy than meat eaters. It’s a personal choice and I do not think by choosing to eat meat you automatically become a worse person that those who are vegetarians. I have eaten meat in the past and do occasionally enjoy smoked salmon with cream cheese on a nice, toasted bagel.

There may be ethical reasons to not eat animals but on the other hand, our ancestors were shrewd hunters. We as humans are in this position on top of the food chain because our meat-eating ancestors were able to get dense caloric foods in meat and fats with the help of fire. We should be in gratitude to those ancestors so that we can now choose not to eat meat. Numerous cave paintings depict hunting scenes.

Here are the 15 reasons to eat vegetables over meat!

  1. You can retire sooner. On average, meat products are more expensive than vegetables.
  2. You will get plenty of fiber when you eat beans and lentils. Happy morning!!
  3. Health benefits like reduced cancer risks.
  4. Leaner body weight.
  5. You don’t need to store your fresh fruits, vegetables, and your dried beans in a fridge. Great perk if you are a “prepper”!
  6. Imagine a beef smoothie for breakfast.
  7. Chutneys and Achars! Need I say more?
  8. Your foods are wonderfully aromatic.
  9. Can reheat vegetarian meals in a microwave without getting that weird reheated chicken smell.
  10. Fewer carbon emissions
  11. It’s easy to get meat substitutes nowadays.
  12. Live longer.
  13. Cleaning is far easier.
  14. Can you imagine Mark Whatney in the movie “The Martian” eating growing farm animals instead of potatoes? No possibility of that happening!
  15. Despite not having the genetic risk for Alzheimer’s, meat-eating has been associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s.