Would you like to become a part of a community of like-minded people who want to learn how to better care for themselves, others, and our planet? We wanted to know how to be an advocate for our own health. How do we partner to be part of the solution, not just the problem, so we asked Sarah Otto, Goodness Lover, to share her secrets to a healthy life and ultimately a healthier generation and planet?
Tell us about The Gut Solution, why is your approach so different? What is behind your inspiration?
My mission is to empower people with the information they need to make the best choices for their health. The gut is the root of our health and home to 80% of our immune system. We cannot be healthy without a healthy gut. For anyone who suffers from chronic conditions like autoimmune disease, hormone imbalance, heart disease, anxiety, depression, arthritis, Alzheimer’s or obesity, gut repair is the foundation of healing.
Many people are suffering because they (and their doctors) don’t understand gut health. According to the World Health Organization, 70% of deaths are caused by these chronic and preventable diseases. Well, they’re only preventable if you know how to do so. I work with leading experts in root cause medicine to teach people how to prevent and reverse disease and restore and optimize health by repairing their guts.
I created a documentary series called, ‘The Gut Solution’, to make the knowledge about gut health accessible to anyone and everyone.
Awesome! What are 4 tips or tricks for getting kids to eat healthier?
Nutrition is so, so important for kids and although I don’t have my own yet, I’ve had the privilege of interviewing experts on this topic. Here’s what I’ve learned…
1 – It’s the parents’ responsibility to set healthy boundaries when it comes to food. Many doctors say parents complain that their child only eats junk food, but it is the parents who must control what the children have access to. The consequences for their future are real and serious.
2 – Give kids lots of healthy choices and let them discover what they like best.
3 – Aim for a balanced week. It is not essential for every meal to be perfectly nutritionally balanced, but it is important that children eat plenty of healthy fats, proteins and lots of fiber. If they have more of one on a particular day, adjust the next day’s meals to balance it out.
4 – The best way to get kids to eat a healthy variety is to encourage them to eat all of the colors of the rainbow.
Great advice! What are your top superfoods…
The superfood that I am most excited about is fermented vegetables! I’ve learned all about the importance of a healthy microbiome while creating The Gut Solution and one of the best ways to achieve this is by regularly consuming fermented foods.
Turmeric is a favorite of mine as well. It is a potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. It’s really, really great for the gut and is known to prevent chronic diseases including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
I also really love garlic. It’s an amazing immune booster and it keeps your microbiome happy. Plus, it’s so easy to incorporate into pretty much any savory dish.
I love garlic for the immune system! What are your best natural beauty products you can’t live without?
The best beauty products are exercise, sleep, and sunshine. When it comes to skincare, don’t put anything on your body that you would not eat. I love to use simple formulas featuring things like coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, avocado, honey, and essential oils. Avocado blended with honey makes a nourishing mask. Spritz apple cider vinegar to balance pH and prevent breakouts. Massage with coconut oil before bed to wake up to a healthy glow.
Got it! Simple ingredients for radiant skin! What advice would you give to an expecting mom who is eating for two?
I think an expecting mother should be careful about what she should not consume: GMOs, pesticides, artificial preservatives, food dyes, processed foods, toxic beauty products, and synthetic fragrances. I see some doctors encouraging women to indulge in unhealthy foods during pregnancy. I think we should embrace pregnancy as an opportunity to give our children the best start in life with wholesome and nourishing foods.
Yes, a powerful opportunity to give our children the best! What are your 3 powerful tools for stressed-out moms?
Exercise is an amazing stress buster and an essential part of a healthy lifestyle.
Strong social circles are essential for women. It’s really important for moms to have close girlfriends. Hanging out with friends is also a great way to relieve stress.
Many women tell me that they lose themselves in mothering. The ones that are happiest in the role are the ones that commit to something they do purely for their own joy. Whether it be art or music or reading…it really doesn’t matter what it is, but it’s really important for everyone to chase their dreams and make time for the things that give them the most joy and it’s also stress-reducing to do so.
Speaking of mothering and children how do we teach your kids empathy in today’s chaotic world?
I think the best way to teach anything is by being an example. There are many opportunities to exhibit empathy every single day. Teaching it to children is a matter of embracing it in our own lives. This can mean donating time and money to organizations that care for the poor and homeless members of one’s community, helping strangers that you encounter in public spaces or doing something helpful for a friend that is going through a hard time. The important thing is that you regularly model connecting to other people and offering kindness.
Great tips here! What about anxiety? What techniques do you recommend for women to deal with anxiety during pregnancy?
Diet is an important tool for regulating anxiety. Eat a high fiber diet rich in a diversity of plant foods and healthy fats for optimal mental balance. Make sure you’re getting plenty of vitamin C, B vitamins, selenium, magnesium, and zinc. Our brain relies on these nutrients to make the neurotransmitters that keep our minds cool, clear and calm. If we are deficient, we won’t have enough serotonin or dopamine to feel good.
Wow! The power of our diet! Thank you, Sarah, for hanging out with us, we love the power of education and look forward to learning more from you and The Gut Solution and about how to maintain our best health! For more on Sarah visit her website, Facebook or follow her on Instagram!