The gastrointestinal (GI) system forms the core of our bodies. After all, the GI System is responsible for feeding every other system the nutrition that it requires. Proper gut function is instrumental in wellness. Breaking food into microscopic nutrients is the most complex process that occurs in your entire body. It is no wonder that GI complaints are common. Bowel issues are the leading reasons that people seek healthcare. In fact, one in four people have functional GI complaints that affect daily living. Almost one in two have likely experienced one or more GI symptoms in the past three months. Maintaining optimal gut health is a delicate balance. A number of common factors can easily make you feel out of balance, such as:
- High saturated fat / low-fiber diet
- Excess sugar or alcohol intake
- Food sensitivities or intolerances
- Nutritional deficiencies
It is easier to get back into balance with a plan.
The 5 Components of Gut Restoration – The 5 R’s
- Remove: We must remove offending substances from the diet that irritate the intestinal lining and imbalance our gut flora (natural symbiotic bacteria). Removing unwanted compounds from the body is the first step in healing.
- Replace: After removing the irritants, we will begin adding targeted nutritional support in the form of foods, herbs, spices, oils, and supplements. We will replace digestive enzymes and stomach acid through supplementation if necessary. Improperly digested food prevents feeds the wrong bacteria. You wouldn’t feed dolphins the shark food and be surprised when sharks show up, would you?
- Reinoculate: The lining of your bowels contains a more diverse ecosystem than anything found on the entire planet. If the ecosystem becomes imbalanced with too few bacteria or too many of the wrong bacteria, we must replace and transplant new bacteria. Each time you take an antibiotic, you reduce the diversity of your ecosystem. It may be time to reinoculate. An optimal gut flora balances the immune system.
- Regenerate:The mucosal lining of your intestines can be harmed by many factors. For example, soda, stress, medications, low stomach acid, and certain foods can damage the lining. Your stomach’s lining is responsible for producing adequate mucous to prevent the acid from causing pain. Your intestines microscopic villi (or “shag carpet”) is responsible for absorbing microscopic nutrients. Damaging the “shag carpet” can cause minute micronutrient deficiencies that can cause system symptoms (migraines, skin rashes, and more). Your healthcare provider can use foods and supplements to restore the lining.
- Retain: This is the final and eternal step: Retain your healthy gut. With a high fiber, phytonutrient dense food plan, your restored gut function will support your body with optimal nutrients and energy for years!