Make Ahead Berry Yogurt Parfaits + Healthy Gut Flora
This post was created for Earth Fare, healthy food for everyone.
We know beneficial bacteria lives all throughout our bodies, but the gut bacteria play a crucial role in our health. The gut flora, also called the microbiome, is the complex community of microorganisms that live in the digestive tract. Recent research has shown that a healthy and balanced gut microbiome may play a role in reducing inflammation and strengthening the immune system.
On the other hand, bad bacteria can promote inflammation that has been linked to autoimmune diseases. When an unbalanced gut flora is present it could possibly contribute to a wide range of diseases and conditions including allergies, diabetes, celiac, asthma, obesity, arthritis, irritable bowel disease, acid reflux, cancer, autism and even mental and psychological conditions. There is a clear connection to a healthy gut and overall physical and mental health.
So, what causes the gut flora to become unbalanced? A diet high in processed foods and excessive sugars, pesticide residues and even early exposure to antibiotics could alter the microbiome. To ensure a healthy, happy gut you should focus on unprocessed foods, watch your sugar intake, eat plenty of greens and add fermented foods into your diet. The live bacteria found in fermented foods and yogurt is key to keeping your gut healthy and balanced.
Yogurt with live cultures is a great way to ensure probiotics are making their way into your digestive tract. This layered yogurt parfait can easily be made ahead of time and would make a perfect healthy breakfast or afternoon snack. Since following the SCD diet, we make our own yogurt to ensure that it is fermented for 24 hours. By doing this it has a higher probiotic count than commercial brands and many people who are lactose intolerant are able to tolerate this yogurt. Homemade yogurt is part of the key to success with this anti-inflammatory diet and adding this yogurt to your diet will aid in the process of repopulating the gut with beneficial bacteria and ridding it of harmful bacteria.
MAKE AHEAD YOGURT PARFAIT WITH MIXED BERRIES
SCD, Gluten-free, Refined Sugar-free
Yield: 4 servings
4 cups organic yogurt* (we use homemade and add honey)
¼ cup strawberry fruit spread* (again, we use homemade)
½ cup frozen blueberries, unthawed
1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
¼ cup slivered almonds
¼ tsp lemon juice
Medium Mixing Bowl
1. Place two cups yogurt plus honey into a bowl. Add strawberry spread and lemon juice, whisk to combine.
2. Distribute the blueberries into four small glass jars.
3. Next add three spoonfuls of vanilla yogurt into each jar.
4. Sprinkle with almond slivers and strawberries.
5. Add three spoonfuls of the yogurt strawberry spread mixture.
6. Sprinkle with almond slivers and strawberries.
7. Add another layer of yogurt and top with berries and almonds.
*In order for this recipe to be SCD compliant the yogurt should be homemade and sweetened with honey and the strawberry jam should also be homemade and only sweetened with honey. In place of homemade jelly you can use this. Use this recipe for homemade yogurt.