Following a gut-healing diet is ESSENTIAL for healing all those random health issues our families face, but it can be difficult to get started. One mama is sharing ALL her tips & tricks for improving your family’s gut health!

You’ve broken out in hives – inexplicably.

Your husband has gained an extra spare tire in the last year, but he’s still as active as ever.

Your son has battled eczema since the day he was born – and nothing you’ve tried has helped.

Your baby girl is constantly saying her stomach hurts – and you have no idea why.

Do any of these scenarios sound like your family? If so, it’s time to do a checkup on your family’s gut health!

Skin issues, bloating, weight gain, digestive upset – and even seemingly unrelated health issues like asthma or allergies – can all be linked to poor gut health. So, if your family is struggling in any of those areas – and there are plenty more, including many aspects of our mental health! – today’s interview is for YOU!

Rebekah Bergren is a former teacher, homeschooling mom, and now a WAHM Network Marketer focusing on gut health education for other busy mamas. As one of the few women I know who has successfully improved her own gut health – and that of her entire family! – I wanted her to share with us her best tips & tricks for getting started on this journey to ultimate gut healing.

Let’s dive in!

Following a gut-healing diet is ESSENTIAL for healing all those random health issues our families face, but it can be difficult to get started. One mama is sharing ALL her tips & tricks for improving your family's gut health!

This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product or service through these links, I may receive a small commission, which helps to keep my family and this blog afloat. Your price, as always, stays exactly the same. Thank you for your support!

As always, I am not a health professional, and I do not play one on the internet. I am simply a mom sharing her best tips and tricks for supporting her family’s health and wellness. Always talk with your doctor before beginning a new wellness routine — bonus points if you can find a holistic practitioner or Functional Medicine doctor near you! View my complete terms & conditions here

Rebekah recently joined me for a Facebook LIVE interview on this topic! Be sure to check out the recording below for even MORE tips & tricks for helping your family jumpstart your gut health!

Hi, Rebekah! I’m so excited you could join the Scattered Woman Crew today! Let’s get started by having you tell us a bit about yourself — your family, background, work, faith, etc.

I am married to my high school sweetheart- Ryne and together we have four really great kids- two boys and two girls- Riley, Samuel, Savannah Claire, and Wyatt. My formal degree is in education although this is my second year to “officially” be a stay at home mom! (Last year we moved two times, and I homeschooled my oldest two!)  I absolutely LOVE teaching; I just also love being a wife and a mom.

Learning more about gut health and how it affects overall health and sharing it with others has really helped fill that love for education that I have been missing since staying home with our little ones!

We recently bought some land out in East Texas, and I have big dreams of raised bed gardens and chickens in the future, although I know pretty much nothing about either of those!! In addition to taking care of the two little ones while the big kids are at school, I help manage our ranch and I work from home sharing about the importance of gut health!

I am overwhelmed by God’s grace in my life every single day! I am so thankful that his mercies are new every morning because some days, I just need a fresh start!

Amen, sister! So, what got you interested in gut health to start with?

Really, my interest was born out of necessity. When I was 23 years old I had an intestinal blockage and that was a huge turning point for me in my own health journey.

It’s interesting, because now that I look back, I can see so many times when my body was trying to tell me that I was having issues, but I didn’t have the understanding at the time to see them as the warning signs that they were.

For example, a few years prior to the blockage, I started to develop hives all over my legs. I went through a couple of rounds of steroids to get them to go away. I remember that my doctor attributed them to stress and after that he thought that the hives were possibly signs of an autoimmune disease.

After the hives came back- again- someone shared the book “Breaking the Vicious Cycle” by Elaine Gottschall with me. I started following (very loosely) the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD diet) and sure enough- the hives went away! The sad part of that whole thing though, was that I still was not getting the big picture. I was only following the diet change only to get rid of the hives- and that was all. I didn’t realize that the hives were only a sign of some of the deeper issues that I had going on inside.

I remember my surgeon came in after my colonoscopy and he was discussing the results with my husband and me. He gave me a diagnosis and told me that I would need to be on a certain medication. When I asked for how long (still not understanding the gravity of the situation) – he responded that I would need to be on the medicine for the rest of my life! I was floored!!

To make a LONG story short, we went home and began researching that very day. I never took the medication, and I have been able to manage all of my G.I. symptoms through diet, supplements, and lifestyle changes.

I know that this route isn’t for everyone! There are people who have issues that are much more severe than mine, and it is GREAT to have a good relationship with your medical professional. However, in my case, this particular doctor was unwilling to help me heal, rather, he just wanted to contain the issue without searching any further.

It’s so frustrating when our docs just don’t get it! Since you weren’t able to get help from your doctor, what HAS been your biggest source of encouragement, education, and support for your gut health journey?

I am always impressed with how God places people in my life exactly when I need them. I have met some really great people who have such a wealth of knowledge about different aspects of overall health throughout the years.

My father-in-law is a chiropractor and my mother-in-law is an acupuncturist. They have been a really great resource for me, but I try really hard to glean information from a variety of resources. I love listening to podcasts, reading books, and just visiting with others who have been on a similar journey. Through finding like-minded individuals, I have found lots of encouragement in those friendships!

There are even a few private Facebook groups I am a part of where I have lots of social media friends and even some people who I love, and I’d like to think we are friends, but really, I just stalk their Instagram account!

It’s so true! We need people who understand this journey around us for that moral support!

Interested to check out the resources Rebekah mentioned? Here are some of her top picks!

As you’ve been on this journey, what has been the hardest part about focusing on gut health?

I think one thing that has been difficult, is the fact that this way of thinking is not the way I grew up. I am so incredibly thankful for my parents and the core values that they instilled in me, but the reality is, talking about gut health was just not something that we did.

I kind of joke about it now, but growing up, I really had no clue that you should “eliminate” – at the very least – once a day! I mean, poop-talk isn’t usually a “normal” family dinner conversation, although there are many times when it comes up around my table.

Choosing a lifestyle that is different than the way you are accustomed to doing things can absolutely be daunting, and there have been times that I have unintentionally hurt the feelings of different family members when I have tried to share things that have been working for me or even ideas on how they could address issues they have dealt with.

Furthermore, I have worn my feelings on my sleeve and I have gotten my feelings hurt when other people didn’t heed or want the advice I had to share.

The more I study, the more convinced I am that focusing on G.I. health is not just something I think is important, but something that I feel is imperative for everyone, but each person still needs to come to that realization on their own. The thing is, I never thought to question things myself or to dig a little deeper until someone encouraged me to look a little deeper.

Definitely! We all need that initial PUSH to get started & even realizing how important gut health is!

How have you been able to get your family on board with a new way of eating? You’ve still got littles at home!

It has actually been easier with my two little ones than with my two big kids because our two big kids have been on this journey alongside us while the two little ones, don’t really know much different. So, I have seen both ways!

Especially if you have little ones or if you haven’t started a family yet, I would encourage you to start making changes now, so that they are a part of your “normal” as your kids grow up.

Keep a Balanced Mindset

But I have also been through (and I’m still in the trenches) of dealing with kids who want some of the things we “used to eat.” I try to deal with this, just like most things, with balance. The thing is, many whole30, paleo, or grain free meals are really good, they may just be different than what you are accustomed to eating.

Make ONE Meal

As a general statement, I make whatever it is that we are having and my kids are required to at least try it. If they just REALLY don’t like it, they are welcome to heat up some leftovers from a previous meal or, they can choose to not eat at all.

Offer Options

I try to have at least three different things on their plate. Usually a main dish, a side dish, and a fruit. (not always…) So, chances are, if they don’t like one thing, they will eat the other two so they won’t just be starving!

Communicate the Why

The other big thing for me is open and honest communication. I think it is important for everyone to understand “why” you are doing something. I try to point out things and let them make connections on their own.

For example, they eat donuts at church on Sunday mornings and by the time they get home, their tummies usually are hurting. I will give them some things to help with the discomfort, and then I just point out that sometimes when you eat a lot of sugar and bread, when your body isn’t accustomed to doing so, it can make your tummy hurt or even make it hard to go to the bathroom. I noticed both of the older ones cutting back a little the next week! (That doesn’t always happen, but sometimes it does, and I take the “win” where I can!)

We talk a lot about how important it is to take care of the body that God has given us. That includes our physical, spiritual, and emotional health too! I find that when I make them a part of what we are doing, instead of making them blindly follow my demands, it helps the “team” mentality my husband and I strive to have.

Following a gut-healing diet is ESSENTIAL for healing all those random health issues our families face, but it can be difficult to get started. One mama is sharing ALL her tips & tricks for improving your family's gut health!

That’s awesome! Besides seeing those good food habits being instilled in your kiddos, what has been the most rewarding part about your gut health journey?

Feeling like a better version of myself is hands down the most rewarding part!

I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue when I was pregnant with baby number four. (another scenario when I didn’t realize how all these things were tied together.)  I would come home from teaching, take a nap while I let the kids watch TV so that I would have enough energy to make dinner just to start the bedtime routine and drag myself into bed.

I believe that we each have unique talents and gifts that can be used to glorify God. The simple truth is that if we are too sick, tired, or depressed, we cannot fully live our lives to the fullest.

The simple truth is that if we are too sick, tired, or depressed, we cannot fully live our lives to the fullest. ~ Rebekah Bergren, 13+ Tips & Tricks for Improving Your Family's Gut Health! Click To Tweet

I wasn’t the mom I wanted to be when I spent every free moment I could napping.

I wasn’t the wife I wanted to be when I turned down some snuggle time on the couch because of my frequent runs to bathroom.

I wasn’t the ME I wanted to be when I would be let negativity creep in.

Focusing on my gut health and my overall health has helped in every single one of those areas for me!  

Not only that, but being an advocate for myself is an empowering feeling. To “empower” someone simply gives them the authority or power to do something. It is defined as making someone stronger and more confident especially in controlling their life and claiming their rights. I want other people to know that they can be proactive in their own health, too!!

You’re definitely empowering the Scattered Woman Crew with your tips & tricks today! If someone is JUST starting to see the importance of improving their gut health, what would you recommend they do as a first, quick-win, baby step to help them kick things off well?

This is a difficult question to answer because what might be a quick-win for someone, may seem daunting to someone else.

One thing that is good for EVERYONE is to stay hydrated.

I know we all say that we know how important it is to drink the right amount of water, but not everyone actually does it! Not staying properly hydrated will hinder positive results that you are making towards your gut health.

For example, if you have started taking a really good probiotic that is getting rid of junk you may have had stored up for a while, you may experience some detox symptoms. If you are not properly hydrated, your body will have a harder time getting rid of those toxins and you will feel terrible!

If you are trying to change up your diet and incorporating more fruits and vegetables, but you don’t have enough water to keep things flowing properly, and you become constipated- again- you will feel miserable!

For someone who is wanting to take things a step further, I love writing out a list of different things that you can do to help improve your gut health. This can be anything such as taking supplements, changing up your diet, drinking bone broth, adding collagen to your daily smoothie, or even doing more research through reading or listening to books or podcasts.

Simply pick one of those things and focus on it first.

It’s all about those *baby steps*!

Need some BASIC baby steps to grow a healthier family? Try these!

Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired? I AM! Here are my 3 baby steps to a healthier family that will have you seeing IMMEDIATE results.

Talk us through a time when you were really struggling to stay committed and focused on your gut health. How did you get yourself back on track?

This is a constant battle for me! I recently heard a fantastic speaker talking about the “all or nothing” mentality. The reality is, “all in” is hard to obtain- 100%, 24/7, 365 days a year is a tall order to fill.

When you put everything out there it can be disheartening when you have a setback. Often times if you “cheat” at a meal, it makes you feel as if the whole day is already ruined so you might as well eat whatever… When in reality- progress is a GREAT thing!

When I think back to where I was even five years ago, and I look at where I am now, I am LEAPS and bounds better and more informed than I was then. If I look a little closer, I see a lot of slip up with my diets, some veg nights, etc. So, I really try to encourage others in the small steps and victories that they DO have.

To help me try to stay on track, I have positive affirmations that I read or listen to every single day. I am a BIG Words of Affirmation person (according to my Love Language), so this is even more important to me as well as to everyone! Our brains are amazing, and they are so incredibly powerful. I really believe that speaking positive thoughts and affirmations help each day.

When I get “off track,” I simply finish out my day, and start fresh the next morning.

Now physically, when I get off track, I have finally gotten into a few rhythms and I know (mostly) what to expect with tummy setbacks. I almost always have some bone broth on hand that I can slowly sip throughout the day. I will make myself some ginger tea, some fresh juice, or simply take some additional enzymes and chill on the couch as much as I can that day.

One of the hardest parts of focusing on gut health is how much from-scratch cooking can be involved. GAPS, AIP, Paleo, and other diets all focus on healing the gut, but the restrictions and cooking/preparation time can be daunting for us busy moms. It’s probably the biggest complaint I get about eating well! What tips/tricks can you share to help us with our kitchen time?

Well, the first thing I always share with people is that if you are simply too exhausted or too tired to even think about cooking dinner when you get home, or at the end of a long day- that is something that needs to be addressed!!

I mentioned earlier that I was not just tired, but also experiencing severe fatigue, and it was hard on the entire family! One of the most common side effects (out of hundreds) of candida overgrowth is fatigue. Once that is addressed, sometimes the task of meals isn’t *quite* as daunting!

But… here are some tips or ideas that might help:

Get your kids in the kitchen!

Our kids can do far more than we sometimes allow them to do. I start my little ones off by doing simple tasks like removing grapes from the stem so that we can rinse them. I then either put them into baggies for on the go snacks, or in a big bowl so that it is ready for mealtime.

We love to eat olives, so I will let the kids use a butter knife and cut them in half for me. Another job for younger ones is to grate the cheese or even setting the table can be a help at dinnertime.

My older kids can do a little more. They can brown the meat, chop veggies, (although my son is SOOO slow- I’m letting him help in faith that he will get faster ;)), and they are all around good assistants. I can tell them to open this can, get half a cup of X, crack two eggs in here, etc.

Spend some time prep cooking for the week ahead.

This can’t always be Sunday afternoons for us because we are pretty busy on Sundays – so do what works for your family – for us that is sometimes Monday nights. I will go ahead and chop all the veggies I will need that week (that I can) and usually I will make something quick for breakfasts like grain free sausage balls, egg muffins, or breakfast bars.

Especially if I get the kids to help, I can usually knock a lot out pretty quick and that makes things easier throughout the week! Since I don’t want to make dinner after all that prep cooking- that is usually a crock pot dinner night. *See the next suggestion!

Utilize your crockpot, Instant Pot, etc…

A simple dinner is to just put some meat in the crock pot that morning, and then it is ready when you get home. I love keeping veggies that just steam in the microwave and then cut up some fruit!

Dinner can be thrown together pretty quick. (You can always pick up a rotisserie chicken on your way home for the same type meal.) I love to do a roast with carrots, a pork loin with lemon pepper seasoning (or any type you like), or chicken breasts with BBQ sauce. There are so many ideas and recipes out there!

Utilize leftovers into new meals!!

This will help cut down on prep on a second night during the week (or the next).

For example, use leftover roast to make roast beef enchiladas (one of our favorites). Use leftover rotisserie chicken to make chicken salad for lunches. Use leftover taco meat from taco salad night to make quesadilla’s or nachos. (There are some great gluten- or grain-free options for nachos and tortillas!) Be creative!

Eat breakfast for dinner!

When we have miscellaneous leftover veggies, one of my favorite things to do is make a frittata! I whisk up some eggs, coconut milk, and throw in leftover ham, taco meat, etc, with leftover veggies like mushrooms, onion, tomatoes, asparagus, etc. Throw some salsa on top when it is done – and add some fresh fruit!

If your budget allows, just buy things pre-prepped!

I love to purchase cauliflower that is already “riced” or spiralized veggies in the freezer section for quick stir fry’s or spaghetti! Sometimes those things are well worth the extra cost so that you can get food on the table faster!

Double your recipes!

When possible, double recipes that you love. You will be getting the same number of dishes dirty and have to chop the same things – so just make an extra to throw in the freezer for another time!

But one big thing to remember is that even cooking is like most other things, the more that you do it, easier and easier it will become over time.

Following a gut-healing diet is ESSENTIAL for healing all those random health issues our families face, but it can be difficult to get started. One mama is sharing ALL her tips & tricks for improving your family's gut health!

Those are some great tips, Rebekah! What final thoughts would you like to share with the Scattered Woman Crew about gut health?

Just remember that just because you have dealt with something for “forever” doesn’t mean it is something you have to continue to live with. God created you on purpose for a purpose. There are so many things that are outside of our control, so try to do the best you can with the knowledge that you DO have. Be proactive, vs. reactive as often as you can and try to remember WHY your health is important to you.

Just because you have dealt with something for “forever” doesn’t mean it is something you have to continue to live with. ~ Rebekah Bergren, 13+ Tips & Tricks for Improving Your Family's Gut Health Click To Tweet

One last tip to help you get your gut health moving along (no pun intended!):

Grab your copy of The Gut Health Super Bundle from Ultimate Bundles!

This collection of 25 eBooks, eCourses, and more is only available until March 31, 2018.

If you need someone to hold your hand as you start focusing on gut health, this bundle is JUST the thing. From your very first baby steps to more advanced gut healing strategies, you’ll have every resource you need in ONE place for ONE low price.

PLUS, you’ll get a whole HOST of tasty, gut-healing recipes to try, as well as other mama-tested tips & tricks for getting gut-healthy food on the table as quickly & easily as possible!

Remember, though: it’s only here until the 31st and then it’s gone. After that, you’d have to pay nearly $600 to get all of these resources separately. But if you grab yours now, you can get everything for nearly 93% OFF!

If you’re like me and love a good deal – especially on something that is SO helpful for your family’s health! – you are NOT going to want to miss this one!

Just click on the image below to learn more!

Thank you so much for joining us today, Rebekah! I know these tips & tricks for improving our family’s gut health are going to help so many mamas in the Scattered Woman Crew.

Remember, you can watch the extended version of this interview from our Facebook LIVE interview here or in the embedded video at the beginning of this post!

Tell us in the comments: what health challenges are you dealing with that could be linked to gut health? What tips are you most excited to try with YOUR family?











Interested in writing for Scattered Woman? We’re always looking for other mamas to collaborate with us! If you have guest post ideas about healing health, finding faith, restoring relationships, or crafting careers, please email laura{at}scatteredwoman{dot}com. We’re excited to work with you!

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