What’s in this Article?
An Important look at the process of digestion
• Expressions of an Irritated Bowel
• The truth about healing
• Understanding the process of healing
• Yeast overgrowth
• Aerobic and Anaerobic foods
• Gauging the injury
• Other Important Factors
The Digestive Process:
Digestion starts in the mouth. Saliva is rich with the enzyme amylase and a weak lipase. Amylase starts the digestion of carbohydrates and lipase – fats or lipids.
The action of chewing breaks down the cell wall of nutrients. Within the cell wall of our food are the vital vitamins, minerals and enzymes our bodies require..
Chewing also takes pressure off your digestive system. By chewing your food to a liquid, your stomach is not trying to break down larger food molecules.
Food then travels down the esophagus to the stomach. The upper part of the stomach is called the enzyme or fundus stomach. The chewed food or bolus sits for another ½ – 1 hour for further digestion through enzymatic action before Hydrochloric Acid raises, changing the ph of stomach, to begin the digestion of protein..
The types of fats, protein, etc. you’ve eaten determines the length of time the food stays in the stomach before it empties to the duodenum or upper intestinal tract.
Most digestion and absorption takes place in the small intestinal tract. The health and efficiency of our small intestinal tract determines the rate of metabolism and absorption.
Signs and Expressions of an Irritated Bowel:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome is first and foremost a sign of a distressed digestive system. Why it has gotten this way has to be traced back to either a predisposed or existing condition; making incorrect food choices; not chewing your food sufficiently; ingesting foods that are incompatible to your body. Other factors might include age can, insufficient enzymatic action or low hydrochloric acid. Often a Professional is necessary to help you discern the root cause and at the very least help you on the road to recovery.
A compromised digestive system is inefficient. That is for certain. Generally it means there is a problem with efficient absorption.
Some of the common complaints include:
• Gas and bloating
• A burning feeling
• A sense that food is not digesting or digesting very slowly
• Heavy sensation after you have eaten
• The presence of lower intestinal mucus
• Constipation or both
• One thing for certain, a compromised and unhealthy digestive system can also mean malabsorption.
It means you are not deriving the most from the foods you eat. Funny thing about the digestive system, most people have no idea of the seriousness of compromised digestion. As a society we actually believe that laxatives and antacids are a normal function of life. Those two over the counter pharmaceuticals make up the bulk of over the counter remedies. When over the counter doesn’t cut it, then individuals head to their doctors for the behind the counter hardball stuff.
Billions are spent yearly; thousands are driven to the local pharmacy or physician’s office in order to seek out relief for the symptoms of Irritable Bowel and Digestive Distress.
Did you read that last statement?
Read it again
“Billions are spent yearly; thousands are driven to the local pharmacy or physician’s office in order to seek out RELIEF for the SYMPTOMS of Irritable Bowel and Digestive distress”.
True healing is this – improving nutrient absorption; which promotes health and longevity. This is not about Symptom Control. It is about healing. It is about finding and fixing the cause.
If you are here reading this, this I know for certain – Statistics show that people with above average intelligence seek out information for their own health. If you are also taking nutraceuticals, statistically you are confirmed above average intelligence. Why did I even make that comment? Because I am about to explain your problem to you and give you information you need.
If you or someone you know suffers from irritable bowel, here is what you need to know. When your digestive system is injured to the point of the symptoms I described earlier, or if you have been actually diagnosed with Irritable Bowel, your little digestive tract is sufficiently injured that each time you eat certain foods you continue to assault it. Figuring out where to start is the biggest hurdle for most. This is where a Healthcare Professional will save you time, frustration, ongoing intestinal injury and pain. A Healthcare Professional will guide you and provide you with the approach you need to so you know the path.
Explaining the injury:
The small intestinal tract is lined with villi, microvilli and plicae circularis. The combination of these absorptive vehicles increases the absorptive area of the small intestinal tract to 200 sq. meters. Each villi contains tiny capillaries and lymphatic vessels to transport nutrients destined for circulation. The enzyme galactose, lactose and sucrase are positioned along the lining of the intestinal tract. They are called brush border enzymes. You will be tested….kidding. Work that into a conversation… but not on the first date…. ha ha. Whether the original cause of irritable bowel is genetic or whether the injured microvilli are the result of diet or lifestyle the outcome is the same. The consequence of injured microvilli, the vessels responsible for nutrient absorption along the small intestinal tract, is malabsorption.
The intestinal tract is also lined with goblet cells. Goblet cells are actually filled with little mucus droplets. Mucus serves as protection against any and all incompatible foods.
When we eat anything the body recognizes as poisonous, unhealthy or incompatible, goblet cells emit mucus into the lumen or open area of the intestinal tract. The purpose is to prevent absorption of poison that can harm the body, seems reasonable to me.
Ordinarily and quite frankly naturally as human beings we, with all our foibles, indulge in less than stellar food choices. White sugar is notoriously about the best example. If we indulge in poor choices only occasionally, mucus is secreted and the mucus is removed by excretion after proper eating has resumed. By that I mean the next meal or the next day.
If you are continuing to make unhealthy food choices or if you have starchy foods in your diet, goblet cells are stimulated more than usual. This is particularly true if you have already been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s, Colitis, Celiac. Mucus flows like a river to do its job which is covers the tiny microvilli and protects the body, your body, from the absorption of poisons.
This amount of mucus interferes with enzyme action because it seriously limits the possibility of ‘enzyme to food’ contact. Digestive enzymes are those tiny little workers whose only job it is to split or breakdown specific nutrient molecules to be absorbed through the tiny microvilli for use by your body.
As a result of a continual mucus barrier, the microvilli become squashed and injured. Broken, injured microvilli are compromised in their ability to absorb nutrients. Here is what it might look like: if you imagine a nice green plush football field, just before the big game, the grass is blowing in the wind; you are looking over a sea of uniform green grass…enter the players, amylose and amyleopectin. Simple sugars or amylose run down the field, rubber spikes, no damage. Run… Run… Touchdown…. Yay! Amylose kicks from the 10 yard line, amyleopectin catches the ball…. Oh this can’t be good…. The grass is getting badly torn up; they are scuffing up the field and leaving large brown spots. Ever heard of Ulcerative Colitis? Bleeding, mucus, inflammation, unbelievable pain? For individuals who are predisposed to ulcerative colitis, they can experience so much pain as a result of the injury caused along the intestinal tract. It would look like a beaten up football field, huge brown patches. Sometimes the injury is so pronounced and the lumen is so badly chafed, bleeding occurs.
You also need to know that undigested carbohydrates stay in the intestinal tract along with the excessive mucus build up, creating a second assault … Mucus and carbohydrates become food for unhealthy flora, is known as Candida Albican, better known as yeast. The correlation of Candida or yeast overgrowth and irritable bowel is very highly correlated. Remember what I said about the signs and symptoms of Irritable Bowel? Gas and Bloating? That is the little yeast cells saying – “Thanks for supper!” Brain fog, joint stiffness, more gas, more bloating, poor concentration, sugar cravings… Yes that’s your little bacterial inhabitants saying – “Feed me, I’m yours”
It is important to understand what starches are. It is also important to understand how starches are intimately involved in interrupting and inhibiting the healing process.
Starchy foods include: grains, cereals, legumes, potatoes, yams, peanuts (because they are legumes). They represent a complex webbing of sugar molecules. There are two types of carbohydrates, simple and complex. Amylose or simple starch and Amyleopectin or complex starch are the two molecular structures. Amylose is linear and Amyleopectin is, I suppose the easiest analogy, is a web-like structure. The molecules are woven in a complicated fashion. Complex carbohydrates create complex problems for the digestive tract for individuals suffering IBS.
Taking charge of the seemingly endless cycle of digestive distress is as easy as understanding where to start and what to choose.
Aerobic and Anaerobic Foods
Aerobic and Anaerobic foods are pivotal to both healthy and compromised intestinal tracts. Aerobic foods are foods that contain oxygen, fruits, vegetables, nuts; seeds for example. Aerobic foods feed the aerobic parts of our body, muscle, tissue, blood etc.
Anaerobic foods are foods such as processed foods, sugars, and all forms of denatured foods. Many harmful bacteria are called anaerobes because they do not require oxygen to survive; they feed on sugars mucus and anaerobic foods.
The foods you eat will determine what area of your body you’re feeding and what is going to flourish. This is the normal state of affairs for a normal healthy person. For IBD, diet becomes even more critical. We need a bloodstream rich with nutrients. We want a colon teaming with healthy intestinal flora. It needs to be 80% lactobacillus and all its relatives and 20% Candida etc. With most IBD, the flora is reversed.
This upset causes a myriad of problems.
Besides the all-important absorption of nutrients, normal healthy flora is critical in the production of the B family of Vitamins and Vitamin K. Unhealthy flora cases brain fog, sugar cravings, fatigues, joint pain, emotional upset, concentration problems, to name a few.
It is more than just eating nutrient rich food when it comes to understanding and correcting conditions of IBS. It is about eliminate the food source for unhealthy flora, to encourage their elimination and facilitate the healing process. It is also about a protocol that is specific to your individual needs in order to also facilitate the healing process.
The degree to which you may suffer IBS is generally gauge along the bath room trips. Everybody is very specific where they are along in the condition and where to start in the dietary approach.
Gauging the injury:
A usual gauge in a 24-hour period is:
• 2-5 toilet trips is mild
• 5-10 toilet trips is moderate
• 10-20 toilet trips is severe
If diarrhea is a current problem a basic hypo-allergenic diet designed by a professional is necessary until it subsides.
Make no mistake, the cleanliness and efficiency of your intestinal tract is highly correlated with your mood and sense of well being at a simple level and a deeper disabling level. I strongly suggest anyone who questions this statement read Chapter 7 called The Brain Connection in Breaking the Vicious Cycle.
Cereal grain is strictly prohibited – Corn, Oats, Wheat, Rye, Millet, Buckwheat, etc. in any form. Cookies, Crackers, Toast, Flour, Pasta, White Sugar, Brown sugar substitutes are also forbidden.
Juicing: Fresh live juicing has served so many of my Clients with IBS amazingly well.Some of my strong recommendations are to start fresh juicing. Buy a juicer. They can be purchased for under $50.00. Fresh juice is rich with nutrients and live enzymes compared to anaemic pasteurized juices which has been stripped of all nutrients except what’s added back and even at that it’s totally devoid of enzymes. If diarrhea is a current problem a basic diet designed by a professional is necessary until it subsides.
Proteins: Prudent to minimize or eliminate red meats and pork, especially in the early going. There are two strong factors to consider, the need for intestinal efficiency, which means fairly fast transiting foods and the possible presence of antibiotics in non organic farm raised cattle. So, red meats and pork take up to 6-8 hours to digest and that’s more than enough time to putrefy in the intestinal tract. The length of the intestinal tract of a natural carnivore is only 1/3 the length of humans.
The second problem occurs with ingesting second hand antibiotics fed to animals. These antibiotics can find their way into your intestinal tract and further assault the compromised intestinal flora. Fish, poultry preferable turkey or free range chickens. Eggs, homemade yogurt and dry cottage cheese curds are more acceptable forms of protein. Natural cheeses are fine, white rather yellow. Mozzarella and ricotta are the exception, they are prohibited.
Vegetables: Preferably fresh, frozen or juiced, but not canned. Avoid potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams and parsnips because of their amylopectin molecular structure.
Nuts: You can nuts raw, freeze them over night, then soak them for 24-48 hours in spring water, drain and dry, roast in a 250 degree oven for anywhere from 2 hours to 4 hours, depending on the nut. They are delicious. If time does not permit, then make sure to freeze your nuts and seeds when you bring them home. In the early stages, they need to be ground. They also need to be chewed to a liquid. Please remember peanut are a legume and therefore prohibited.
Remember fresh juices. There are no other juices. Weak Coffee, teas and herbal teas are acceptable.
Most Spices are permitted. Ferret the ingredients if you purchasing store bought dried. Look for vpi or vegetable protein isolate –gluten source. Buy spices by the individual or fresh.
Avoid alcohol for a couple of months, especially if the presence of Candida is suspected. Stay on the diet for a minimum of 6 months – 1 year after the disappearance of the last symptom. Relapses do not mean healing is not taking place. Healing is a process, not an event.
Remember evidence shows this dietary approach, if adhered to, can be very helpful.
Other Important Factors:
• Chew your food to a liquid.
• Leave your stomach 10-15% empty for digestive juices to facilitate efficient metabolism. Stomachs, like washing machines don’t do well on a full load.
• Your goals are nutrient dense food, which means nutrient rich blood.
• Feed your aerobic healthy tissue.
• Missing meals is not acceptable especially breakfast.
• Use supplements in the form of Acidopillus, essential fatty acids and enzymes. Others are advisable depending on the status of the condition.
• Add lots of cabbage and cabbage juice. It is the riches source of Vitamin U that is an anti-ulcer vitamin. Cabbage also contains L-Glutamine, which is a good natural anti-inflammatory nutrient.