What makes this recipe gut friendly?
Potatoes are a good source of resistant starch – a prebiotic that feeds beneficial fora in the colon. The bacteria in the gut then produces short-chain fatty acids, which can heal the gut lining and reduce inflammation.
Lentils contain soluble fiber, which is fermented in our colon. Lentils are also a source of prebiotics that feed our existing beneficial gut bacteria.
Pumpkin seeds contain zinc keeps the immune system strong, helps heal wounds, and supports normal growth. When our intestinal tracts are suffering from poor health, cells are less likely to receive zinc even from the healthy food choices we make.
Walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids which promote decreased inflammation in the body. A recent study found that regular consumption of walnuts improved cardiovascular risk by altering the gut microbiome.
Cilantro. The leaves and seeds contain compounds that act as antioxidants, according to a study published in a 2004 edition of the journal “Food Chemistry.” The researchers concluded that cilantro contains phenols which are antioxidants that destroy free radicals helping to prevent oxidation damage to tissues that line the stomach, intestinal tract and blood vessels.
Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
Ingredients for 1 serving:
- 1 large sweet potato (white would work too!)
- ¼ cup carrots, chopped
- ¼ cup onion, diced
- ½ cup canned lentils or beans (can use ground turkey if your grocery store has it and if not vegan)
- 1 tsp mexican seasoning
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
- 2 tbsp scallions, chopped
- 2 tbsp plain yogurt (I used Nancy’s dairy free)
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp chopped walnuts
Microwave the sweet potato: stab the sweet potato a few times with a knife in a few different spots. Wrap it in a damp paper towel and microwave for 4-6 minutes depending on the size of your potato.
While the sweet potato is cooking, sauté carrots, onion, celery, canned beans or lentils (ground turkey or beef if not vegan), and Mexican seasoning in a pan with oil.
Stuff the sweet potato with the sautéed mixture and top with pumpkin seeds, walnuts, nutritional yeast, chopped cilantro and green onion. Add a dollop of plain yogurt (I used plant-based Nancy’s oat milk yogurt), salsa, or any other desired toppings.