How many times do you chew your food? It might seem like a weird question, but it could be the answer to improving your gut health. It’s one of the many tricks I learnt during The Gut Stuff’s first Supper Club of the year.
The Gut Stuff
The Gut Stuff is something of a social business that started when twins Alana and Lisa Macfarlane got involved with the British Gut Project. You might recognise them as BBC DJ’s or TV presenters, but they’ve also been involved in studies involving the gut – because no two microbiomes are the same, not even in twins!
(If you want to know more about your microbiome, this is a great book).
They realised that we really aren’t taught a lot about our microbiome, and that it could be the answer to many, many body issues. In order to explore and share their findings, they created a brilliant video series on the important of gut health, and they’ve now started putting on supper clubs around London – of which I went to their second.
The Supper Club
The Gut Stuff’s supper club was a lot of fun, and had me learning during the course of the night (even after already reading up on gut health and being a kombucha fan!)
Keeping up their sausage balloon (or rather, intestinal) theme, the reception room had a big pink pile of guts tied to the ceiling, with bartenders serving kombucha cocktails and mocktails to match. Lesson number one: you can serve kombucha with alcohol!
After mingling and meeting a few people, including Kim of Food & Lycra and Priya of Prispective, we took our allocated seats and listened to Alana & Lisa’s story. They’re really great speakers, and made the whole evening entertaining rather than overly science-y!
Playing with our food…
Alongside just generally loving the four course meal, there was a lot to learn.
Before we started, we were each given a stomach acid test in a bottle (basically 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda) for us to take home and see whether our gut is balanced, acidic, or alkaline. It’s the same test I did when visiting Nutritionist Angelique Panagos, which proved really insightful.
Then we had to nominate a member of our table to be a “Supper Club Leader”, who taught us the best ways to eat our food. For all four courses we had to chew each mouthful 20-30 times to make sure our food was broken down enough to absorb all the nutrients from it, and to make each course last at least 10 minutes, to ensure we weren’t overly filling up or rushing our bodies.
Not your average nightcap
Finally, we were given a probiotic drink in a test tube to take home – a slightly messy present, I have to admit – to then drink in the morning. It’s an example of the best kind of probiotic, being liquid-based and live rather than in tablet form.
Overall, I had a really fun evening, got reminded that my gut has a lot of influence over my body, and was introduced to a few new foods that definitely sit well with me!