Health

Having Trouble Losing Weight? The Solution Could Be in Your Gut

by Jeanine Asencio 11:40 AM, May 1, 2017

Aired July 5, 2017

Having trouble losing weight?

The answer might be in your gut.

“[Belly fat is] toxic goop that lives within your abdomen,” says Dr. Travis Stork, “It’s biochemically active, increases stress hormone levels, and doesn’t just hang out there. It really is physiologically active.”

Comforting, no?

There is a solution. (Afterall, he did write the book on losing belly fat!)

Dr. Travis says we all have around 100 TRILLION cells living in our guts which can weigh up to SIX POUNDS! All of those cells (full of both good and bad bacteria) play a significant part of the internal processes in our bodies, and according to Dr. Travis, doctors are now only beginning to learn just how big a role they play in weight loss. Studies have shown that within just three to four days of changing your diet, your good gut bacteria will significantly increase!

Here’s how to do it.

Eat More Fiber
Gut bacteria LOVES fiber. Women specifically should be eating 25 grams of it each day, but Dr. Travis says half of all women in the U.S. don’t get enough. In the video above, he shows just how easy it is to get the recommended amount in your diet, so no excuses, ladies! For example, if you want pasta, choose whole grain pasta -- just one cup of it has 6 grams of fiber. Or if you’re eating a sandwich, add some avocado. One half of an avocado has 7 grams of fiber!

MAKE: Dr. Travis Stork's Broccoli and Turkey Salad

Eat Food With Prebiotics
Prebiotics are pretty much food for your gut bacteria. Remember what we said above about gut bacteria LOVING fiber?

“We don't absorb fiber and put weight on,” says Dr. Travis. “What happens is our gut bacteria eats it up which helps us lose weight in the process.”

So the best way to enhance those wonderful prebiotics is to eat lots of raw fruits and veggies. If you’re not a fan of raw veggies (we understand), try eating them in the form of a raw chow chow, which is basically a slightly tangy relish made with veggies. Sneak the chow chow into burritos, tacos, salads or mix it in rice!

MAKE: Dr. Travis Stork's Belly-Busting Pasta Dish

Increase Your Probiotic Intake
Dr. Travis says probiotics are living organisms that can help replenish good gut bacteria. A great way to get more probiotics in your diet is to eat kimchi. Kimchi is spicy cabbage found in traditional Korean dishes -- Rach loves it on hot dogs and Korean barbecue!

Kimchi not your thing? Try kefir! It’s a lot like yogurt, but a little thinner. Dr. Travis likes to have it with his cereal in the morning. When you’re buying it, he advises to make sure the label says “live and active cultures.”

Another option is to eat miso which is a soybean paste. He mixed it up with a little Tahini dressing to make a dip for raw veggies!

“Most importantly, these small changes in your kitchen will be dramatic in your overall health and weight,” says Dr. Travis. “All these foods will add spice to your life!”

MAKE: Burgers and Dogs with Chow-Chow Slaw