This Gut Healing Overnight Oats recipe is one of my favorites from the new book, Flat Belly 365 by fellow registered dietitian, Manuel Villacorta.
Gut health is one of the hottest topics in food and nutrition. There’s still a lot to learn but it’s pretty clear that much of our overall well-being is related to the health of our guts. My amazing RD friend, Manuel Villacorta, clears up a lot of the confusion in his new book, Flat Belly 365: The Gut-Friendly Superfood Plan to Shed Pounds, Fight Inflammation, and Feel Great All Year Long. For many years, Manuel has worked with thousands of patients in San Francisco, helping them to lose weight, not by counting calories but learning how to eat the right portions of high quality, nutritious food.
In Flat Belly 365, Manuel discusses the importance of reducing visceral fat (internal belly fat that surrounds the organs). The goal isn’t to have washboard abs, it’s to improve your health by losing this internal abdominal fat that can cause inflammation and is associated with hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, metabolic syndrome and certain cancers. We learn about the importance of prebiotics, probiotics and fiber to make a happy gut. There’s even a complete how-to for making your own fermented veggies at home which are a great non-dairy source of probiotics!
For those wanting to lose weight, there are 4 (7-day) meal plans, one for each season to incorporate the freshest produce. Women are encouraged to consume 1300 calories and men 1800 as a guideline for these reboot weeks. There are tons of recipes which are customizable to account for food preferences and vegetarian or vegan lifestyles. The key is balancing protein, good carbs and healthy fats to keep you full longer.
I like that there are a few suggested rules that just make sense independent of any diet plan. The 70/30 rule suggests you eat 70% of your calories before dinner and 30% at dinner whenever that may be in the day. This keeps you from overeating at night during the less active hours of your day. Also, after the first week, Manuel suggests following the 90/10 rule which allows 10% of your meals (about 2 per week) to include eating out or celebrations. Any sustainable plan has to allow for life events and socializing 🙂
Tools to help:
To make life easier, there are weekly shopping lists to make all the suggested recipes plus a list of seasonal produce for summer, fall, winter and spring. There are so many yummy recipes, I have my eye on a bunch:
Fig Jicama Salad
Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette
Grilled Lemon Salmon
Hot Apple Cinnamon Smoothie
Oregano Roasted Chicken
It’s no secret that overnight oats are a staple in my life. Who knew that uncooked oats are a source of resistant starch that’s a great prebiotic to feed those important probiotics in your belly? I had to make this Gut Healing Overnight Oats recipe which is perfect for the winter because everything you need comes from the pantry and fridge. In the book, the recipe serves 6 but I adjusted it to equal one serving for my breakfast. Did I mention how much I love overnight oats?
- ½ cup old fashioned oats
- ½ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 2 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- 2 Tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 Tablespoon dried plums, diced
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- pinch sea salt
- 1 Tablespoon walnuts, chopped and toasted
- Mix all ingredients except walnuts in a Mason jar or storage container.
- Cover and let sit in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Stir before serving and top with toasted walnuts. Enjoy.
Check out http://www.flatbelly365.com/resources/ for downloadable food and shopping lists, instructions on making your own fermented veggies and more.
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