Herbs for Gut Health

title of article, herbs for gut health, and kitchen patch logo on top of image of dried herbs in a white bowl

Your gut microbiome is a complex ecosystem made of trillions of bacteria and other microorganisms. It plays an important role in your overall health, including digestion, immunity, and mood. Growing and eating herbs is great for gut health.

A healthy gut microbiome is essential for optimal gut health. When your gut microbiome is out of balance, it can lead to several different digestive problems, like bloating, gas, diarrhea, and constipation. It can also increase your risk of chronic diseases.

The herbs you include in the meals you eat can be a natural and effective way to boost your gut health and support a healthy gut microbiome. Growing herbs at home can provide gut-health benefits by improving air quality with house plants, reducing stress, and providing a sense of accomplishment. 

Here is a list of herbs to improve your gut health:

fresh lemon balm, lemon basil, and parsley in a cup

Turmeric

Turmeric is a spice that contains a compound called curcumin. Curcumin has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It can help to reduce inflammation in the gut and promote healing. Turmeric has also been shown to increase the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut.

Peppermint

Peppermint is an herb that is often used to treat digestive problems, such as indigestion, bloating, and gas. It contains a compound called menthol, which has antispasmodic properties. This means that it can help to relax the muscles in the gut and relieve spasms. Peppermint has also been shown to increase the production of bile, which is a digestive fluid that helps to break down fats.

Chamomile

Chamomile is an herb that is known for its calming and relaxing properties. It can help to reduce inflammation in the gut and relieve digestive problems, such as diarrhea, constipation, and indigestion. Chamomile has also been shown to promote sleep, which is important for overall gut health.

Lemon balm

Lemon balm is an herb that is known for its calming and relaxing properties. It contains a compound called rosmarinic acid, which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Lemon balm can help to reduce inflammation in the gut and relieve digestive problems, such as diarrhea, constipation, and indigestion. Lemon balm has also been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, which can improve gut health.

Lavender

Lavender is often used for relaxation. It contains a compound called linalool, which has antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties. Meaning, lavender can help to relieve muscle spasms in the gut and reduce inflammation. Lavender’s ability to reduce stress and anxiety is also helpful for the gut.

Chives

Chives are a member of the allium family, which includes onions, garlic, and leeks. For those on a low FODMAP diet, chives are a good swap for onions and garlic. Chives are a good source of prebiotics, which are fibers that are not digested by humans but help keep bacteria in the gut healthy. Prebiotics help to feed the good bacteria in the gut and promote a healthy gut microbiome.

You can use these herbs to support your gut health in a variety of ways. You can use them to flavor your food or make herbal teas to drink. It is important to talk to your doctor before starting any new herbal supplement. However I prefer to recommend cooking with herbs rather than using supplements because herbs are higher quality fresh or dried than when they are packaged into supplement form.

Here are some tips for using herbs to support gut health:

  • Add turmeric to curries and stews.
  • Drink peppermint tea after meals to soothe digestion.
  • Drink chamomile tea before bed to promote relaxation and sleep.
  • Make a lemon balm tea by steeping fresh or dried lemon balm leaves in hot water for 10 minutes.
  • Add lavender buds to hot water to make tea. You can also add lavender buds in baked goods, such as cookies and cakes.
  • Add chives to salads, soups, and stir-fries.

You can also find herbal blends that are specifically designed to support gut health. These blends typically contain a variety of herbs that work together to promote a healthy gut microbiome.

Include these herbs in your garden for fresh availability or to save money on herbs. These can be grown either inside or outside. I enjoy planting some outside in the summer and have some to use in teas and cooking indoors through the winter. 

By incorporating herbs into your diet and lifestyle, you can support your gut health and boost your overall well-being. The Mediterranean Diet includes many different herbs and spices and has been shown to reduce risk of chronic disease.

Leave a comment with your favorite herbs to grow and eat.

This information is for educational purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for medical treatment or diagnosis. You should consult with your doctor before changing your diet or starting supplements for any health condition.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top