“We’re all being slowly poisoned in some ways, some advertently, some inadvertently. The food is really tricky these days,” says Dr. Robynne Chutkan, MD, Integrative gastroenterologist and author of Gutbliss A 10- Day Plan To Ban Bloat, Flush Toxins, And Dump Your Digestive Baggage. Healing gastroenterology issues are regularly healed through health and nutrition.
Dr. Chutkan said her patients taught her the concept of eliminating inflammation provoking foods, adding acupuncture, exercise and an environment for healing. She says this changed her paradigm of pills fix everything. “There is so much that we don’t know in medicine. A lot of the evidence is not compelling. What continues to cause me a great deal of anguish is looking at the commercial aspect of medicine. So much of what we do is based on who is providing our medication.”
She goes on to say, “Unfortunately these days pharmaceutical companies are the ones providing much of the medical education. Therefore there is often a pharmaceutical fix for something that could very often easily be treated with a lifestyle fix.” The problem is no one’s going to spend millions of dollars to tell you to eat broccoli or lettuce.
Problematic foods that inflame gut disbiosis and cause bloating are soy, artificial sweeteners, dairy, gluten, alcohol and sugar.
“Processed soy used as a filler is cheap and genetically modified. It can manifest an estrogen like effect in the body. This is very concerning for women who are estrogen dominant. In some of my vegetarian patients who are eating soy patties and using soy milk and soy yogurt it’s a real problem,” Dr. Chutkan says.
Artificial sweeteners do not digest. They hit the small intestines where they ferment and cause a lot of bloating, cramping and diarrhea. Insulin levels are triggered by sweetness not by calories. Insulin spikes store fat.
Pasteurized dairy creates mucus which is a response of inflammation. Small boned fish is a good substitute that is full of calcium.
Benefits can not be achieved by eliminating gluten and switching to gluten-free products. Dr. Chutkan says, “You are swapping one refined carbohydrate for another and that’s not a great idea. You probably won’t notice a big difference in your symptoms.” Damage from gluten-free packaged products builds over time and the patient ends up with worse symptoms years later.
Dr. Chutkan sees bloating as an epidemic today. “Clearly the largest category is the food. It’s becoming increasingly more difficult to even recognize what food is.”
The female colon is different than the male colon she says. There are about an extra 10 centimeters in the female colon. Although this appears to be a small difference there is a large effect. The shape of the reproductive organs also make a difference. The male colon is shaped like a horseshoe making it easier for food, gas and toxins to be released. Chutkan says this is why bloating is frequently more prevalent in females than in males.
Thyroid and hormone issues also impact the gastrointestinal tract. Evidence of the most negatively affecting aspect consistently points to antibiotics. With over diagnosis and over treatment gut bacteria is compromised and depleted. In addition 80% of the antibiotics sold in the US are sold to dairy farms and animal farms feeding the livestock prone to disease in crowded situations. “Even if you are diligent to avoid antibiotics you are probably being exposed to antibiotics through the food,” Dr. Chutkan says.
The gut microbiome, the balance of bacteria in the intestinal tract, is vital to bloating and gut health. The microbiome is the base for nutrition. “There are more than one billion bacteria in each drop of fluid in your colon,” Dr. Chutkan says.
Her patients with an autoimmune disease often have many issues with other autoimmune diseases also. She says they cluster. The gut microbiome is the cause. Antibiotics wipe out the microbiome.
Acid suppressing drugs block stomach acids but also create a hospitable environment for bad bacteria. This is a direct cause of boating caused by possible overgrowth of bacteria and yeast. The next step is skin issues, eczema, allergies and food intolerances.
The sources Dr. Chutkan points out as blame for disease are the exact same sources Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, neurologist, neurosurgeon and author of GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) has been pointing out for over a decade. Her studies on the gut microbiome show irrefutable evidence that overgrowth of bad bacteria cause disease, how to heal the damage and how to recover health even for the most damaged cases.
Dr. Chutkan adds, “I find that these patients frequently have uncontrollable sugar and starchy food cravings and it’s really your gut bacteria that’s sending you in search of some of this stuff. I will see parents who need help with a child who is a picky eater and all they want is sugar and bagels and the older child, good vegetable eater, doesn’t have these cravings.” She goes on to say, “Invariably one kid, the picky eater, had a lot of antibiotics.”
Alcohol also irritates the stomach lining. Enzyme production is decreased causing food to go undigested and it causes damage to the liver ceasing detoxification. Less than one glass a day is acceptable, more is damaging to the microbiome. The liver is the foremost detoxer in our bodies. Once the liver starts to struggle the whole system show stress. Dr. Natasha says the second largest detoxifier is the lungs. Once the liver is malfunctioning on toxic overload the lungs begin to do the same. This is where allergies grow and asthma develops.
Sugar and wheat go hand in hand because they both release glucose into the blood stream. Sugar is highly addictive and negatively affects the gut bacteria by feeding the bad bacteria.
The solution is healing the gut microbiome with copious amounts of home-made fermented foods like sauerkraut, milk kefir and yogurt as well as a quality probiotic.
*Nourishing Plot is written by a mom whose son has been delivered from the effects of autism (asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder, manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia through food. This is not a newsarticle published by a paper trying to make money. This blog is put out by a mom who sees first hand the effects of nourishing food vs food-ish items. No company pays her for writing these blogs, she considers this a form of missionary work. It is her desire to scream it from the rooftops so that others don’t suffer from the damaging affect of today’s “food”.
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