photo by a happy HYG'er
The votes are in, the #HYGers have had their say and Salmon Chowder has come out on top for the most popular gut healing recipe from my four week Heal Your Gut program!
It’s also a great way to up the anti-(inflammatories) on your Omega 3 quota too.
If time is of the essence you can make it ahead and enjoy the next day, giving a chance for the flavours to meld together even further. It’s a hearty, comforting and satisfying bowl of deliciousness featuring beautiful pieces of salmon floating across a sea of creamy broth. It’s an ideal meal for the whole family too so you don’t have to just cook for one.
Why is gut health so important?
The gut is the gateway to your body and not only significantly influences your physical health, but it has a major impact on your mental health. The stomach or gut is one of the key connections to your brain and emotional health and the health of your immune system.
The world within your gut is multifaceted and involves an interdependent relationship between living organisms called micro flora. Micro flora is the complex, diverse microorganism species that live in your digestive tract. These organisms are also referred to as gut flora and are most easily understood as fitting into the categories of either "good bacteria" or "bad bacteria."
'Good' or 'friendly' bacteria complete a multitude of tasks within your body, but some of the common responsibilities of these friendly microbes include working to regulate the gut by neutralizing some of the toxic by-products of your digestion, preventing the growth of harmful, pathogenic bacteria, controlling metabolism, reducing harmful substances such as carcinogens and toxins, gleaning and absorbing energy, nutrients and fatty acids from the foods you eat, producing hormones, training the immune system and communicating to your brain.
The key to good gut healing is to nurture and listen to the gut and give it the right ingredients to promote its inner workings.
One way to enable a healthier gut is by following an elemental diet which includes eating easily digestible foods to heal the gut lining. This isn’t a fad or hard core juice cleanse diet. True healing of the gut involves consuming an array of really delicious, easy to make and digestible meals that don’t compromise on flavour or satiety or leave you wanting to chew off your right arm.
Salmon Chowder is one of the many scrumptious recipes on the four week program with gut-healing effects. The fatty acids in salmon have been linked with protection against several gastrointestinal diseases, through their anti-inflammatory activity and their ability to boost healthy microorganisms in the gut.
The period of four weeks on the Heal Your Gut Program will enable the gut to rest from over digestion and reset, allowing the gut lining to heal and creating an environment where good bacteria will be able to flourish.
You’ll be enjoying meals eaten in their simplest form to allow easy digestion and improve inflammation in order for you to be able to absorb as many nutrients as possible from your food.
An elemental diet consists of nutrient packed juices, flavoursome smoothies, healing broths, mashed bowls, soups, digestible main meals and yummy desserts all free of processed ingredients and gluten, wheat, yeast, sugar and dairy.
This part of cleansing your gut is not about torturing yourself for four weeks. Collective sigh of relief!
To really cleanse the gut you don’t need to live off green juices, detox products or supplements to achieve natural results. But you will be required to commit to improving your gut health by preparing simple and easily digestible foods so your stomach can repair itself.
Your body and your instincts are the best judges for you, not the latest fads and trends. If you're interested in taking part in the next program it starts on the 4th May 2015. Click here to find out more about it.
Try this recipe and let me know how you feel afterwards. I hope you enjoy it.
- 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin coconut oil
- 4 salmon fillets (skin and bones removed)
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 celery stalk, diced
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) chicken stock
- 2 turnips, peeled cut into 2.5 cm (1 inch) cubes
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) additive-free coconut milk
- Celtic sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
- fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, to garnish
Melt the half the coconut oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the salmon and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then flake into pieces.
Melt the remaining oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, celery and curry powder, and cook, stirring frequently, for 3–4 minutes or until the onion is translucent. Add the stock, turnip and parsley, and cook, covered, for 20 minutes or until the turnip is soft.
Add the coconut milk and stir to combine, then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Transfer to a food processor or blender with the flaked salmon and purée until smooth. Season to taste, garnish with fresh parsley, and serve.
Note: If you prefer, the flaked salmon can be added after the puréeing step, as in the photograph above.