How a Healthy Microbiome Changes Your Life (Nourishing Foods, Drinks & Essential Oils) Featuring Karen Wang Diggs
Happy Women’s History Month!
To celebrate the women making history in the natural health and wellness space, we’re proud to introduce you to some amazing leaders, practitioners, and trailblazers we think you should know...
Karen Wang Diggs is a certified nutritionist, therapeutic chef, and chief fermentation officer at Kraut Source and ChouAmi. Her passion is spreading the word about the many ways a healthy microbiome is directly linked to immunity, cognitive function, digestive wellness, and weight loss.
Karen loves sharing recipes that promote health and wellbeing — and also happen to be delicious. (She’s author of Happy Foods – Over 100 Mood Boosting Recipes.)
“Food is our most intimate and profound connection with Nature.” — Karen Wang Diggs
Karen firmly believes in women's health and empowerment by way of a nourished microbiome...
How to Improve Health & Diversity of “Good” Bacteria for Gut Health
Our digestive tract is about 30 feet long and contains trillions of microorganisms. Some of them manufacture enzymes, vitamins and other substances that aid in digestion.
Because digestion is the foundation of good health, it’s essential to eat foods that not only feed your human genes, but nourish your microbiome, too.
Karen encourages us to think of our “gut biome” as the soil in which we grow and thrive. Just as a gardener needs healthy soil full of bacteria, fungi, algae, and other organisms — we need a varied and balanced gut microbiome.
Karen recommends eating a clean pesticide-free diet that incorporates plenty of probiotics for your gut. Be sure to include fermented foods like sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi, and yogurt. Beverages should include water, kefir, and kombucha.
As Karen says, probiotics are the only class of food that everyone gets excited about! The fields of microbiology, allopathic and holistic medicine, and the culinary world have all embraced the health-boosting powers of live-cultured foods.
- Improved memory. Sauerkraut contains choline, an amino acid that supports good liver health and the production of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that helps with memory and protects against Alzheimer’s.
- Protection from harmful pathogens. The “Friendly” bacteria in fermented vegetables guards against shigella, salmonella, and e.coli.
- A stronger immune system, sharper vision, and less stress thanks to the large amounts of vitamin C found in fermented vegetables.
- More minerals in your diet. Lacto-fermentation increases the bioavailability of minerals in your food, including manganese, calcium, and potassium.
- Improved digestion. Lacto-fermented foods increase the action of hydrochloric acid, while protecting the health of the stomach lining.
Overall health and wellbeing must include caring for your microbiome — but of course, it doesn’t end there. For an empowered, healthy life, Karen says you should also:
- Sleep in a room free of electronics — including no wi-fi and no cell phone. Your room should be as dark as possible, according to Karen. Essential rejuvenation occurs during deep sleep, and the production of melatonin is especially critical for detoxification and connecting to your circadian rhythm.
- Avoid sugary foods. Blood sugar levels should always be checked and maintained at the normal range to prevent inflammation, prevent diabetes, and protect your system from damaging hormonal issues.
Essential Oils to Support a Healthy Digestive System
To function at its optimal levels, the digestive system requires all parts of the gastrointestinal tract to be fully empowered — including the stomach and intestines, liver, kidneys, and gallbladder.
Symptoms of digestive troubles can be stomach or abdominal discomfort, belching, gas, and more. Thankfully, many essential oils provide healthy digestive support and help ease your discomfort.
Sweet Fennel Essential Oil. Slightly spicy and with fragrance notes of earth and anise, this versatile and effective aromatic herb eases both digestive and respiratory congestion and discomfort. Along the way, it soothes the body and mind.
Ginger Essential Oil. The active ingredient of fresh ginger root makes this organic oil ideal for digestive support. Warming, stimulating, and revitalizing, it comes to you from Madagascar — distilled from fresh ginger roots, washed in the nearby spring, and ethically harvested.
Peppermint Essential Oil. A time-honored tonic for digestive support, it’s among the most continuously used of all therapeutic oils. Our variety of this bright, mentholated fragrance is instantly recognizable, yet softer and less intensely minty.