It’s no secret that the key to your best health is all in your gut. Yet the reality is that most of us are walking around with inflammation in our digestive system, and sometimes we don’t even know it. Not only does this inflammation in your gut affect your weight, it also affects your mood, energy levels, your memory, brain fog, your immune system, your skin health and so much more.
While truly healing your gut involves some deeper investigation and discovering what things are triggering inflammation in your body, it can be done. And, there are several herbs that can help calm and ease inflammation as well. So, I figured I’d share with you 3 of my favorite herbs to reduce inflammation in your gut. But first, let’s get a basic understanding of why our gut health is so important for our overall health.
How Does Your Gut Health Affect Your Mood?
Scientists have discovered that you have a “second brain” in your gut. It’s known as the enteric nervous system, or ENS, and it’s made of over 100 million nerve cells that line your entire digestive tract from your esophagus to your rectum. You may have felt this gut brain connection in action if you’ve ever had butterflies in your stomach, or that “gut feeling”. That’s the second brain working its magic.
Your Gut & Your Immune Health
Over 70% of your immune cells live in your gut. And they do a very important dance with your gut microbiota (the bacteria, fungi living in your gut) also known as the gut bugs. The wider array of diversity you have of these gut bugs, the better off your immune health and your overall health.
The diversity and health of these gut bugs that line your digestive tract are directly correlated to your dietary and lifestyle choices. That means eating colorful, fiber full foods, and avoiding highly processed foods, sugar, and saturated fats.
Of course, there’s an array of herbs that can help reduce that inflammation, improve overall digestion, and as well as heal and repair the damaged gut wall.
Here's A Few Of My Favorite Herbs To Reduce Inflammation In The Gut:
Chamomile (Matricaria recutita)
I particularly love chamomile because of its ability to soothe the nerves, ease stress, anxiety and tension that also bring about digestive symptoms that show up as pain, gas, colic, and even ulcers. This sweet gentle friend is specific for children who suffer from
Marshmallow (Althaea officinalis)
No, I’m not talking about the ooey gooey marshmallows piles on smores here. I’m talking about a beautiful plant that happens to be a great demulcent herb. It’s rich in mucilage or a bunch of complex polysaccharides, which is this really cool stuff that gets slimy and gooey when it comes into contact with water. And, that’s where the good stuff really lies, it’s in the slime. Trust me on this one, and embrace the slime!
The root is very specific for inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract. It’s been used to help treat inflammation for those dealing with intestinal ulcers, gastritis, indigestion,
Meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria)
Meadowsweet is known as one of the absolute best digestive herbs available. It protects and soothes mucous membranes of the digestive tract and helps to ease nausea.
It’s super helpful when it comes to reducing &/or balancing the
These are just a few of the herbs I’m so grateful to have in my medicine cabinet at the ready as I need them.
Love these herbs and want to get some in your belly? You can find them, with an array of other amazing herbs for gut health in our new herbal tea blend, Backwoods Belly!
About the Author: Melissa Mutterspaugh
Melissa lives in Oregon, in the foothills of Mount Hood. She's a clinical herbalist, environmental educator, mother, wilderness therapist, lover, nemophilist, music loving maniac, and the founder of Mountain Mel's Essential Goods, and podcast host at The Herbalist's Path. She is passionate about inspiring others to take better care of our planet, through taking better care of themselves, naturally!