It goes without saying that what we eat matters to the whole body.
I spent a Saturday a few weekends ago at a conference about gut health. It was a great reminder of how important the gut is to the body. From the gut we are able to see what is going on in the rest of the body; especially in the brain which does not have pain receptors. If you are dealing with bloating in the stomach then imagine what is also going on in the brain. How is the brain being affected by the foods that you are eating?
When it comes to treating the body, we have to go in specific orders so that we support the body. As far as a the GI tract is concerned, this is what we need to consider:
- Remove pathogens.
- Replace digestive enzymes, and stomach acid.
- Re-inoculate with probiotics.
- Regenerate damaged intestinal mucosa.
- Retain to create a GI supportive lifestyle.
Remove pathogens – What is causing the issue? Is there a specific food sensitivity, or is there a pathogen in the system. For food sensitivities I often will do a blood test to see how their body is responding to IgG, and IgE reactions. Testing for pathogen is done via stool analysis. With stool analysis, we are not only looking at the good gut bug, but also the pathogenic, ova, and parasites. If we don’t remove these pathogens then we will be continuing to poison the system on a daily basis.
Replace digestive enzymes, and stomach acid – Unfortunately, as we get old we don’t produce as much stomach acid as we did when we were younger. The digestive enzyme, and the stomach acids are needed in the GI tract to help break down the foods that we eat. Yes, digestion starts in the mouth so chewing your foods is vital. But, without the correct enzyme, or adequate amounts of stomach acids, we will not be breaking down the foods.
Re-inoculate with probiotics – we are made of microbial bugs, and thus we have to make sure that we have the correct microbial bugs in the gut/system. Not all probiotics are created equal, thus it is important to make sure that you are on the correct probiotic for your specific needs. Sometimes we need to make sure that patients are given prebiotics to help feed the gut bugs.
Regenerate damaged intestinal mucosa – The integrity of the GI lining is vital for keeping us healthy. The tight junctions that hold together the cells can be altered. These broken junctions allow bigger items to get into the system, and so we have to make sure that we support these junction by building up the GI tract. Foods and supplements are often needed to help build this system up.
Retain to create a GI supportive lifestyle – These steps build upon each other so the important thing is to make sure that we make lifestyle changes. We cannot just put things in the system when it is broken. Rather, we want to keep the system healthy so that we stay healthy. The best medicine is prevention.
Remember that a gut on fire is a brain on fire. Lets clean up the GI, and clean up your health.