ID-100251784The microbiome is a playground of good and bad bacteria. Once the good is killed off the bad can run rampant. Rebuilding this delicate ecosystem is often no small task. However, certain elements help aid the process more than others and should not be lost in the busyness of healthy cooking.

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Ginger tea is recommended by  Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride while on GAPS, the Gut and Psychology Syndrome protocol known to be the most effective for rebuilding the damaged microbiome. Ginger works as a prokinetic, a motility agent. Specifically, the aqueous extract of ginger, Zingiber officinale, contains saponins, terpenes, phenols, flavonoids and alkaloids. These agents cause the muscle spasms which move fecal matter through the bowel known as peristalsis.

Peristalsis does not just happen in the intestinal tract, it begins in the throat. For this reason many people who feel like their food gets caught in their throat see relief from drinking ginger tea.

Prokinetics can also be found in drug form.

The International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition did a study testing the ileum of guinea-pigs, mice, rats and rabbits. They said, “The study showed that the aqueous extract of ginger exhibits species-specific spasmogenicity in gut tissues of rabbit and rat (muscarinic-type) while through an uncharacterized pathway in guinea-pig ileum, along with a dormant relaxant effect, mediated via the blockade of voltage-dependent Ca2 +  channels.”

The WJG, World Journal of Gastroenterology reported a study using ginger capsules on 11 patients with functional dyspepsia, chronic pain in the upper abdomen region without any known structural cause.

The randomized double-blind study showed, “Gastric emptying was more rapid after ginger than placebo [median (range) half-emptying time. There was a trend for more antral contractions.  Ginger stimulated gastric emptying and antral contractions in patients with functional dyspepsia, but had no impact on gastrointestinal symptoms or gut peptides.”

Functional dyspepsia is a relatively new ailment, becoming more and more prominent year after year. In the last 10 years it has become commonplace to encounter someone in a group who suffers from functional dyspepsia while the medical community remains stumped as to the cause and the resolution.

The Journal of Association of Physicians of India says, “Most of this symptom resolution in community subjects is likely to represent spontaneous resolution, especially since no treatment has been found to give long-term relief.”

dr natashaThis is contradictory to what McBride, the forerunner in the field, has found. Dr. McBride specializes in healing the gut, reestablishing a balanced microbiome and rebuilding the body. Her position remains: if you support the body properly, with nourishing foods, the body knows how to repair itself. She says when pathogens in the gut are imbalanced, pathogenic species can thrive. As they thrive they live and breathe, exhaling and excreting while sloughing off dead bodies and growing new. As this happens these pathogens release toxic gasses specific to their species. These gasses are what she says causes functional dyspepsia as well as other health related issues. 

Even though they called relief “symptom resolution” The Journal of Association of Physicians of India admitted, “Many episodes of symptom disappearance were due to subjects changing symptoms rather than actual symptom resolution.”

McBride says this is reflective of the pathogens. Different pathogens release different toxic gasses causing different symptoms.

McBride recommends real healing foods like these, feeding the good bacteria so they can again establish a balance in the ecosystem while adding ginger to the daily regimen to activate peristalsis. When the pathogens paralyze the motion of the track, ginger is the answer to regaining function of moving toxins from the bowel.

P1080599Using ginger tea like this one or ginger like this is not optimal. Dr. Natasha recommends using fresh grated ginger, that looks like this (organic is always preferred) to best achieve the prokinetic action. Pre-bagged teas are always subjected to manufacturing processes that could feed pathogens. Fresh is always best for optimal effect. 

Using one inch of freshly grated ginger to one cup water, stepped for 10-15 minutes is optimal. Hot tea is always more effective on the system medicinally than cold. 

Generally one of the signs of an overloaded liver is black and blue dark shadows under the eyes. When these individuals drink ginger tea, steeped for 10 -15 minutes, many report the dark circles literally recede right before your eyes.

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, GAPS who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. She works as a Certified GAPS Practitioner who sees clients in her office, Skype and phone. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia through food she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. This is not a news article 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 effect of today’s “food”.

“GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The right of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Patent and Designs Act 1988.”  



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