Packed with fiber, probiotics, and antioxidants this gut health smoothie not only helps your digestive system, but is also a delicious and nourishing way to start your day.
Ever feel like your gut is working against you? Keeping your gut happy and healthy is not easy, but it is super important (more on that below!).
As someone who has been on a hefty dose of antibiotics (paired with a not so healthy diet) this past month I’ve seen first hand how an unhappy gut can lead to chaos.
Slowly I’ve been incorporating more gut-friendly foods into my diet (such as this smoothie) and I can confidently say I already see a difference! So, hopefully this morning smoothie for gut health helps you as well.
P.S. This post may contain affiliate links. Read more about my affiliate policy here.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE
Healthy & Tasty – This smoothie is great for digestion and bloating without sacrificing flavor. It’s creamy, ginger-y, satisfying, and perfectly sweet.
Easy to Make – One of my favorite parts about smoothies? They’re so easy to make! In just a few minutes you’ll have a delicious smoothie ready to enjoy.
Gut-Friendly – Given the title of this smoothie this should be no surprise, but it’s of course gut-friendly! And you know what they say…happy gut, happy life. Okay, I just made that up. But it’s true!
BUT FIRST, WHY IS GUT HEALTH IMPORTANT?
Did you know the gut acts like a second brain? Our digestion, health, and mood are all connected…even in ways we don’t quite know yet. What researchers do know, however, is that the gut can affect every organ in our body.
If your gut is imbalanced (whether through stress, poor nutrition, or long-term use of antibiotics) it can cause issues with your immune system, serotonin, and hormones, making it much harder to stay healthy.
Issues such as bloating, brain fog, joint pain, constipation, etc., can all arise if our gut is imbalanced. How do we avoid this? By making sure there are more good bacteria than bad bacteria in our digestive system. Fiber rich foods, quality sleep, limited sugar, and eating a diverse range of foods can all contribute to having a healthy gut microflora.
PROBIOTICS VS. PREBIOTICS
Below you’ll see a lot of ingredients labelled as either probiotics or prebiotics. So what does this mean?
Probiotics are foods that contain living strains of bacteria that help improve the gut flora in your digestive system. While prebiotics are plant-fiber foods that feed the good bacteria.
Prebiotics are essentially food for the probiotics, keeping the existing good bacteria in the gut healthy!
INGREDIENTS NEEDED (WITH SUBSTITUTIONS)
Have an intolerance to any of the below foods? Use the gut healthy food list for substitution ideas.
With that being said, to make this smoothie you will need the following ingredients:
Non-Dairy Milk – The base of this smoothie is non-dairy milk. Any plant based milk is fine (almond milk, oat milk, soy milk, etc). However, make sure to choose a milk that doesn’t have added sugars, oils, gums or fillers.
For example, you’ll see the emulsifier carrageenan as an ingredient in a lot of plant based milks. However, it can cause bloating and other digestive issues so make sure to look for a plant based milk that is made with natural ingredients. Or, make your own!
Non-Dairy Yogurt – One of the best and most well-known probiotics is…yogurt! Most non-dairy yogurts are a good source of probiotics. However, when choosing one make sure to look for one that’s low in sugar and contains live active cultures. One of my favorites is Forager’s probiotic plain cashew milk yogurt.
Banana – Both fresh and frozen bananas are a great source of prebiotics and supply the gut with inulin, a type of fiber that helps the good bacteria grow. They’re also a great source of manganese and potassium! If you’re watching your sugar, you can omit the banana but the smoothie won’t be as sweet or filling.
Blueberries – Blueberries are a great source of prebiotic fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins. They’re filled with important nutrients like vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, copper, potassium, and more.
Ginger – Fresh ginger not only helps with the production of stomach acid, but it also helps keep food moving through the digestive tract.
Rolled Oats – Oats are another great prebiotic food. They’re filled with fiber which helps feed the good bacteria, keeps you full, and helps keep bowel movements regular. If you are sensitive to oats, you can leave them out.
Ground Flaxseed – Another prebiotic, flaxseeds are packed with fiber. The fiber in flaxseed ferments in the gut and helps improve digestion. Just make sure to use ground flaxseed as whole flaxseed doesn’t get digested as well.
HOW TO MAKE THIS SMOOTHIE
Making this delicious smoothie is super easy! For full ingredients and instructions make sure to read the recipe card below.
Step 1: Start by adding all ingredients to a high-powered blender. Add the milk first, followed by the rest of the ingredients to avoid any ingredients getting caught.
Step 2: Next, blend the smoothie until you get a completely smooth texture. If not using any frozen fruit, add a handful of ice for a colder smoothie.
Step 3: Pour into a glass and enjoy!
STORAGE & REHEATING
Smoothies are best fresh, however you can make the smoothie ahead of time. Just add it to a mason jar and keep in the fridge for 1-2 days. When ready to enjoy, give it a shake to mix everything back up.
FOODS TO EAT FOR A HEALTHY GUT
Wondering what foods to eat for a healthy gut? Below is a list of gut-friendly foods to start incorporating into your diet. The below list is definitely not exhaustive, but it is a good start.
Prebiotic foods like cocoa, apples, watermelon, bananas, flaxseed, garlic, and whole wheat products help feed our intestinal bacteria.
Probiotic foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir and yogurt introduce healthy bacteria into your digestive tract.
Anti-Inflammatory foods like nuts, berries, beans, and leafy greens help keep your gut happy by preventing inflammation. Plant compounds, called polyphenols, are especially great for the gut since they have antioxidant properties that encourage healthy growth in the gut.
P.S. Not all these foods will taste good in this smoothie (garlic I’m looking at you), but you can definitely get creative by adding some of these ingredients to this gut health smoothie.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
Smoothies can be great for gut health when made with the right ingredients. They’re an easy way to add variety to your diet, as well as boost your mineral and vitamin intake! To make a gut-friendly smoothie use fruits, vegetables, seeds, and dairy-free yogurt.
Definitely! Just make sure to use a high-quality protein powder without additives and artificial sugars as both can cause problems with the gut. If you’re looking for a vegan protein powder, both Nuzest and Garden of Life are made with quality ingredients.
To make the best gut health smoothie it’s super important to choose a high-quality vegan yogurt with probiotics. Make sure the label says it contains live active cultures or probiotics. Or, look for bacteria like Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium in the ingredients list.
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If you decide to try this recipe out, let me know! I love seeing your recreations tagged on Instagram @nourishedwithnatalie.
Gut Health Smoothie
- 1 cup almond milk
- ⅓ cup dairy-free yogurt
- 1 medium banana
- ½ cup blueberries
- 1 tsp grated ginger
- 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
- Add all ingredients to a high-speed blender. If not using any frozen ingredients, add 1/2 cup of ice.
- Blend until smooth.
- Pour into a glass and enjoy!