NEUROTRANSMITTERS – Our Gut plays various highly important roles within our body, which are so crucial, that the Gut has actually been considered our 2nd brain. This is because within the Gut we actually secrete various Neurotransmitters which are involved in our emotional control centre and are responsible for different feelings and emotional reactions.
GALT – Gut Associated Lymphoid Tissue, which lines our gut is the major site for white blood cell production and other important immune factors. These are responsible for ensuring we have a strong immune defense in response to foreign invasions and infectious disease, modulating the immune response to allergies and intolerance’s including foods, grasses, chemicals etc and preventing auto-immune reactions.
CELL SIGNALING – the gut is home to billions of healthy bacteria which one of their roles is to send messages to other cells within the human body and initiate various cell mediated responses and functions associated with normal human physiology.
Video: The Role of the Digestive System in Balancing Hormones
The Digestive System & all its moving parts
Have you ever experienced bloating or discomfort, which you couldn’t work out what was causing it or what actually relieved it, because it seemed like every day it was different, one day you could eat meat no worries, the next it sat in your gut like a log, one minute your stools were loose, then next you couldn’t go for a few days! Well this is really common and its because there are many different elements to the digestive system and there are several reason why things can go wrong with the digestive system. One of the major causes of digestive dysfunction is definitely a result of eating foods, medications or products that are damaging to the GIT or foods you are allergic or intolerant too, but the other factor is when there is a break down of the functioning of any of the components which make up the digestive system and that’s what we are going to be focusing on this week in Balance Me.
Following is a list of the common Digestive System elements that need to be addressed for healthy Digestive health
1. Digestive Secretions
Digestive enzymes, bile and hydrochloric acid can all be classified as digestive secretions, required for digesting food, breaking up waste, supporting the immune function and also clearing excess mucus and foreign matter.
When we are not digesting our food properly due to an under production of digestive secretions common symptoms such as: bloating, reflux/burning, indigestion, abdominal distension, pain, burping, gas and general uncomfortable feelings often result. This can occur due to a number of reasons:
Your food is not being digested, its stagnant within your digestive system and now beginning to ferment and product gases created all or any of the above symptoms
You are not producing enough acid (hydrochloric acid) which is required to digest and break down more dense proteins such as meats and animal products
You are producing too much hydrochloric acid
Your gall bladder is clogged up and not secreting bile
Your liver is sluggish and not doing its job in stimulating and orchestrating the above functions
Experiment with the follow Digestive Secretion Stimulants
Apple Cider Vinegar
Dose: 15-30ml dilute this with a little water to make a shot and take this either just before eating, while you are eating or straight after eating. This will stimulate the acid production within your digestive system. This can be helpful for those who are experiencing burning, which can be caused by both an under or over production of acid. Experiment with taking the ACV at different times, if you take it before eating and find your reflux gets worse, then the cause of your acid reflux is most likely due to an over production of acid, if it soothes the problem, then your reflux and indigestion is most likely caused by an under production of acid. 2
Squeeze fresh lemon juice into a glass of water and drink every morning first thing, to stimulate your digestive secretions. You can continue to do this through out the entire day if this eases your symptoms
3 .Foods with natural digestive enzymes: Pineapple, Papaya/Paw Paw, Bee Pollen or Fermented Foods (sauerkraut, kim chi, kombucha)
Add these foods to your diet to assist with the digestion of your foods.
2. The Gut Lining – Healing Leaky Gut
It is believed that up to 80% of the population have a degree of damage to their gastro intestinal lining and specifically the gut, which plays havoc in our system in a number of ways:
leads to food intolerances due to undigested foods passing into the blood stream out of the gaps in the gut where they are identified as foreign and an immune response initiated
Weakens the immune deference and affects the production of white blood cells leading to immune suppression and frequent infections
Disrupts the normal functioning of the immune system leading to auto-immune processes
Affects the gut micro biome (beneficial bacteria)
Factors which damage the gut lining leading to Leaky gut syndrome
Eating foods you are allergic or intolerant to ie Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts (most common allergens)
Medications such as Oral contraceptive pill, antibiotics, protein pump inhibitors, NSAIDS, steroids etc
Infections within the Gut
ACTION – Healing the Gut
Bone Broth – make your own bone broth out of organic grass fed bones. Bone broth is loaded with minerals and collagen which is specifically indicated for healing tissue, ideal for healing leaky gut
Healing Anti-Inflammatory Turmeric Tonic
Healing Foods – Manuka honey, aloe vera juice, Turmeric
Healing Nutrients – Zinc, slippery elm, glutamine, the herb licorice, Turmeric
Restore Gut Microbiome – Probiotics & Kombucha (see below)
Or you can check out the Naturopathic Store & start yourself on a practitioner grade anti-inflammatory, healing powder which rapidly heals the gut
It has been said that humans actually contain more beneficial live bacteria within our entire system than we do DNA, so as imagined, this bacteria plays huge roles in the assistance of a healthy human body!
Aiding detoxification and elimination of toxins, especially the metabolism of oestrogen
Supporting the immune system
Aiding mental and emotional well being
Signaling to various cells and neurotransmitters – cellular communication
Factors which deplete beneficial bacteria
Medications especially antibiotics & oral contraceptive pill
Over use of anti-bacterial products including hand wash, house hold cleaners
GIT infections and parasites
Dealing with a Potential Parasite
Common signs you may have a Parasite:
You have an explained constipation, diarrhoea, gas, or other symptoms of IBS
You travelled internationally and remember getting traveller’s diarrhoea while abroad
You have a history of food poisoning and your digestion has not been the same since.
You have trouble falling asleep, or you wake up multiple times during the night.
You get skin irritations or unexplained rashes, hives, rosacea or eczema.
You grind your teeth in your sleep.
You have pain or aching in your muscles or joints.
You experience fatigue, exhaustion, depression, or frequent feelings of apathy.
You never feel satisfied or full after your meals.
You’ve been diagnosed with iron-deficiency anaemia.
You have a thick coating on your tongue
The most thorough way to determine whether or not you have a parasite is to have a stool test done by your GP, however, the standard pathology procedures are not always thorough enough to pick up all parasites, which some species have become very clever at flying under the radar. If you have been experiencing long term digestive problems, can link symptoms beginning to when you were travelling overseas or had a gastro infections then you may want to consider a comprehensive Stool analysis test (see details below) for a more thorough check for parasites and resistant GIT infections and a general health evaluation of the entire digestive tract.
Garlic Enemas for Parasite Infections
ACTION – Probiotics
What are probiotics?
Probiotics are living bacteria or yeasts which are beneficial for your health, especially your gut health and digestion. There are millions of different strains of each of these, perhaps many that have not even been discovered yet, but it is vital for our health, well being and functioning of our body that we have a good supply of these symbiotic organisms.
Where do I get Probiotics?
Forget about Yakult, this is a very well marketed but poor source of living bacteria, which is also very high in sugar, which is counter productive by encouraging the growth of the harmful bacteria which can easily build up in our system and affect the beneficial bacteria. Fermented foods are a great source of probiotics, although these are not a mainstream readily available food source and require home fermenting for best results, choosing a good quality, high strength probiotic is often necessary and worth taking once to twice per year. As part of your Balance Me program, you will be implementing ‘RestoreME’ a 10 strain powerful probiotic supplement, however we always ensure that the GIT environment is clear and clean, rid of bad infections before we start a probiotic supplement, otherwise it’s like pouring water into a leaky bucket. We need to ensure the healthy bacteria can survive and thrive within your GIT.
If you are interested in culturing your own fermented foods I suggest looking into:
Kombucha (directions below)
There are lots of resources available on the internet with instructions as to how to do this and I chose to purchase my starter ingredients and tools from the Australian company Nourish Me Organics, a family owned business.
If you suspect you have a parasite intestinal dysbiosis which has not been completely eradicated by your stage 1 supplements you may want to consider the following:
Do a 2nd course of M4L:KleanseME, a poten combination of anti-parasitic herbs
Take 1 clove of garlic 3 times per day, after eating (full tummy). Just be warned you will have killer garlic breathe
Investigate other anti-parasitic herbs such as Black walnut, Wormwood, Cloves, Oregano etc
Garlic Enemas (download instructions below)
Now that you’ve just learnt how incredibly important our Liver function is for not only digestion, you might be able to consider a little more seriously the role of Enemas, and in particular Coffee Enemas or Garlic Enemas.
BENEFITS OF COFFEE ENEMAS
Here are 10 Reasons on Why You Should Try A Coffee Enema:
Quickly and painless removes toxins from your body.
Cleans and heals the colon, through removing built up debris, fecal mass and impurities from the colon wall, which in turn improves peristalsis and bowel motions.
Revitalizes the body, increases energy levels and improves mental clarity and mood.
Highly useful for moods through the regulation of hormones through improved liver health.
Helps eliminate parasites and candida.
Improves digestion, supports the gall bladder and bile flow, eases bloating and indigestion.
Stimulates the liver to product Glutathione a potent anti-oxidant and immune boosting amino acid.
Can help heal chronic health conditions in conjunction with a healthy diet and holistic care.
Prevents classic ‘detoxification’ side effects and eases the “die-off” phenomenon when undergoing a parasite cleanse, detoxing, fasting, cleansing, weight loss protocols, juicing or undergoing dietary transformations or natural healing protocols.
Highly recommended by the Gerson Institute for the supportive treatment for natural healing of cancer.
And 1 more bonus – completely clears up skin blemishes, rashes and acne, through redirecting toxins out of the bowel, lessening the toxins being removed via the skin which clogs pores and irritates the skin.
If we don’t look after our Gall Bladder this little pear shaped and sized organ can get us into strife, leading to lots of pain and a really disrupted digestive function. No doubt you know someone who has had their Gall bladder removed, due to painful ‘attacks’ most commonly caused by the presence of Gall stones, but there’s a big problem with this, we actually need our Gall Bladder and here why:
Functions of the Gall Bladder
Stores Bile which is required to help us emulsify (dissolve, break-down) fats
Drains waste products from the liver into the small intestine (so they can be removed)
Assists with the absorption of fat soluble vitamins: A, D, E & K as well as many other lipid soluble nutrients and antioxidants
When food enters the small intestine, a hormone called cholecystokinin (see another pesky hormone) is released which signals the gallbladder to contract and release bile into the small intestine through the common bile duct.
Here’s where problems can arise
When we have a diet too high in ‘bad’ cholesterol, processed fats, trans fatty acids and basically bad dietary fats, they are quite difficult to digest and start to build up in our system, creating a sticky mess, which eventually hardens. Bilirubin is a by-product of red blood cell recycling and it can also build up if our liver function is sluggish and then we have bile salts, which if they build up all of these things harden and lead to gallstones to form. Gallstones are generally small, hard deposits inside the gallbladder that are formed when stored bile crystallizes. Anyone who has every enjoyed some greasy fish n chips a few times in their life time will no doubt, have accumulated cholesterol stones. I’d say nearly every one has lots of these little cholesterol or gall stones, but its not until they become a certain size that you will experience pain, and doing coffee enemas or Gall bladder flushes is the best way to clear them out, before they get bigger in size and cause damage!
The best way to remove Gall stones while they are still small is through Coffee Enemas
Please note, if you have a really large gall stone, a coffee enemas won’t move this and is not dangerous
Stay tuned, next week I have a Gall Bladder Flush protocol for you
6. Bowel Function
If there is one vital piece of information I really want you to take from this weeks module, its the importance of the Bowel in clearing Estrogen and keeping your hormones balanced!
KEY ELEMENTS OF THE BOWEL
To remove the crap – toxins, waste and all other impurities we do not want kept in our body
Provide a home for the micro-biome – the helpful bacteria which metabolize our excess and left over estrogen
This shocks some of us, but did you know the NORMAL requirement for daily bowel movements is 2 per day! And if you are going any less then this, which is really common, you have a sluggish digestive system and your body is going to be over loaded with toxins, which will eventually negatively affect all the cells in your body leading to poor health.
TRICKS TO REGULATE BOWEL FUNCTION & GET THINGS MOVING
YOU MUST be drinking at least 2 litres of water each day in order for your bowels to evacuate
Exercise – 30 minutes at least 4 times a week, or daily if your bowels are lazy, which improves general circulation in the body
Eat 10 serves of fruit & Vegetables combined EVERYDAY
Massage Doterra Digestzen Essential oil blend into your stomach each morning. This is a blend of digestive herbs which can be taken internally, used in a difuser or used externally
Magnesium supplementation can assist with the relaxing of the bowel to encourage peristalsis which is the natural action which moves things through the bowel
The National Dietetic Associations daily Fibre recommendation is 20-30g, but I think we can do much better than that, and its actually really easy to achieve simply by getting in 10 serves of fruits and veggies a day, which if you are following the Balance Me Eating plan, even loosely you’ll be smashing that goal!
Great high fibre foods which stimulate bowel function but also work as an intestinal broom to clear out waste:
Chia seeds & linseeds
Aloe Vera Juice
Dried Prunes & dried fruit in general
Pears or pear juice
Berries and Apples and fruit in general is high in fibre
Beans, lentils and legume – just be careful if you don’t have good healthy bacteria in your tummy, they might make you windy
Nuts and seeds in general
“An Apple a Day keeps the Doctor Away!”
Benefits of Drinking Kombucha (fermented beverage made from tea, organic sugar and a SCOBY)
Aids digestion and gut health
Boosts the immune system
Promotes Weight Loss
Cleanses and detoxify’s the system
Improves system pH balance
For the full instructions as to how you can make it yourself, quickly and easily at home, check out this document
If you don’t like the idea of DIY Kombucha, many health food stores and supermarkets are now stocking this, so feel free to experiment!
One thing I like to make mention of is the high amount of histamines found in fermented foods including Kombucha. So if you know you don’t tolerate histamines well or your system is already overloaded with them (could also be a sign you need more vitamin C in your diet) then just take caution and don’t overdo it. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing when we are working with therapeutic foods, so just watch any hey fever, itchy eyes, eczema or headaches don’t flare up when you start drinking Kombucha, its not common, but it does happen.
Functional Pathology – Assessing Gut Health
The Comprehensive Stool Analysis Test
As the name suggests, this is a super comprehensive test, meaning it really looks at a lot of factors and can reveal a lot of information about different disease states, causes of disease, GIT infection, digestive secretion function, the levels of healthy bacterial, cancer markers, inflammatory markers, GALT activity and lots lots more. So this is one test I would highly recommend you investing in if you have been experiencing poor digestive health for a long time or your symptoms are quite serious and debilitating. For example: continuous diarrhea, blood or mucus in your poo, severe pain or you have a history of a parasite infection.
You can download the request form here:
Select CSA with Parasitology x 1 ($439)
Remember all this money goes direct to the pathology lab testing your Stool, who will then pass the results onto the Moment 4 Life team where your results will be passed onto you free of charge and you will have the opportunity to discuss these with your mentor in the Facebook group or in the Live Weekly Q & A sessions.
Congrats that’s week 3 done!
Week 3 Checklist
Have I watched all the educational Videos for week 3?