9 Steps to Perfect Health: How to Heal Your Gut Naturally | Chris Kresser
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9 Steps to Perfect Health: How to Heal Your Gut Naturally

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how to heal your gut naturally
Regular exercise can help heal the gut naturally. iStock/PeopleImages

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All disease begins in the gut. — Hippocrates

Hippocrates made this profound statement more than 2,000 years ago, but we’re only now coming to understand just how right he was. Gut health is critical to overall health, and an unhealthy gut contributes to a wide range of chronic diseases, including diabetes, obesity, autism, depression, and anxiety. Many researchers, myself included, believe that supporting intestinal health and restoring the integrity of the gut barrier are two of the most important goals of medicine in the 21st century.

If you’re experiencing issues, learning how to support gut health naturally could make a difference in your overall health and well-being. If you’re working in the health and wellness field as a nutritionist, health coach, or another allied provider, understanding gut health could help you support your clients as they work to restore and maintain a healthy microbiota. Read on to learn why a healthy gut is essential for creating a healthy body and how you can restore and maintain a healthy gut for life.

Finding natural methods to heal the gut can help you get relief from a wide range of distressing symptoms. Find out how to support a healthy gut through diet and lifestyle. #optimalhealth #changeagent #chriskresser

Health Coaches: Why Focus on Gut Health?

If you’re in the health coaching profession, you’ll undoubtedly encounter clients with existing gut problems and chronic diseases. Some may struggle with obvious gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, gas, or bloating that clearly point to gut issues. However, others may have extraintestinal manifestations, such as blood sugar dysregulation or mental health issues, that are also rooted in gut dysfunction. No matter who you’re working with, supporting your clients as they take steps to heal their gut naturally should be a priority due to the profound impact of gut health on overall health.

The idea of the gut affecting overall health may seem far-fetched to some people. Therefore, I recommend beginning any discussion of gut health by briefly describing the two related variables that determine gut health: the intestinal microbiota and the gut barrier.

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Are We More Microbial than Human?

The human gut is home to approximately 100,000,000,000,000 (100 trillion) microorganisms, collectively referred to as the “gut microbiota.” (1) The gut microbiota harbors a gene set 150 times greater than that of the human genome. (2, 3)

These microbes aren’t just passively living their lives; they have a profound impact on our health. Within the GI tract, gut microbes promote peristalsis (the movement of food through the intestines), protect against infection, produce vitamins, and maintain a healthy gastrointestinal mucus layer.

Outside the digestive tract, gut microbes influence other organs and tissues through neural networks and signaling molecules. Through these complex communication networks, gut microbes regulate 70 to 80 percent of the immune system and influence blood sugar control. (4, 5) They also modulate the function of the brain, bone, heart, skin, eyes, and muscle tissue. (6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11)

When the gut microbiome is disrupted, processes normally regulated by the gut microbiota, such as immunity and brain function, are impaired. This ultimately may lead to the development of chronic conditions such as autoimmune disease, metabolic dysfunction, and mental health issues, among many other health problems.

What Disrupts the Gut Microbiome?

There are many features of the modern lifestyle that disturb the gut microbiome. Exposure to these harmful factors is pervasive in our society.

Processed, Inflammatory Foods

The Standard American Diet, packed with processed, inflammatory foods such as refined carbohydrates and industrial seed oils, is an established risk factor for gut dysbiosis. (12) The Standard American Diet reduces bacterial diversity and induces inflammation in the gut, thereby contributing to a slew of downstream adverse health effects.

Low Fiber Intake

Our gut microbes ferment dietary fiber to fuel their activities. A lack of dietary fermentable fiber, which is quite common in the United States, deprives gut bacteria of this fuel and leads to reductions of beneficial bacteria. (13)

Stress

Chronic psychological stress alters the gut microbiota; in fact, this may be one of the critical mechanisms by which stress contributes to so many chronic health issues. (14)

Chronic Infections

Bacterial, fungal, and viral gut pathogens alter the composition of the gut microbiota. (15) Importantly, a gut infection does not need to be acute to cause problems in the gut microbiota; some infections fly under the radar for years. Stool testing is a valuable tool for identifying both acute and subclinical gut infections.

Antibiotics and Other Medications

Antibiotics and non-antibiotic medications such as birth control pills, proton pump inhibitors, and NSAIDs significantly alter the gut microbiota, according to research. (16, 17) Repeated rounds of antibiotics and the use of non-antibiotic meds are important risk factors to identify.

C-Section Birth and Lack of Breastfeeding

During vaginal birth, a baby passes through the birth canal and is “seeded” with a mother’s beneficial bacteria, setting the stage for optimal gut microbiota development. Babies born by Caesarean section, on the other hand, are first exposed to microbes present on the skin of those who touch them during the C-section delivery (doctor, nurses) and immediately after (mom), as well as whatever limited microbes are floating around a sterile hospital environment. A newborn’s lack of exposure to a mother’s beneficial vaginal bacteria alters the course of gut microbiota development in infancy and childhood and may be associated with future health problems, even into adulthood. (18)

Breastfeeding provides infants with breast milk rich in probiotics, prebiotics, and immunoglobulins, which facilitate the development of a healthy gut microbiota. (19) Infant formula lacks many of these nutritional factors and is associated with suboptimal development of the gut microbiota. (20)

Circadian Rhythm Disruption

Circadian rhythm disruption, induced by factors such as abnormal sleep/wake schedules and blue light exposure at night, causes imbalances in the gut microbiome. It also compromises the integrity of the gut barrier, the second essential variable that influences gut health. (21)

How Does the Gut Barrier Impact Our Health?

As I mentioned earlier, two variables influence gut health: the gut microbiota and the gut barrier. But what exactly is the gut barrier and why is it essential for our health?

The gut is a hollow tube stretching from the mouth to the anus that passes out anything that is not digested. The gut barrier, a multilayer system made up of intestinal epithelial cells and proteins, prevents the escape of non-nutritive (and potentially harmful) substances from the intestine into the bloodstream. When the structural integrity of the gut barrier is compromised, large proteins and other molecules escape from the gut into the blood; this phenomenon is referred to as “leaky gut.”

The leakage of undesirable and incompatible substances from the gut into the bloodstream causes the immune system to launch an inflammatory response. The chronic inflammation resulting from leaky gut is an underlying cause of many chronic health conditions. Leaky gut could, therefore, be playing a role in many health conditions.

What Causes Leaky Gut?

We’ve learned that many of the factors that harm the gut microbiome, such as antibiotics and an unhealthy diet, also contribute to leaky gut, a predisposing factor in the development of many health issues.

In addition, there are particular substances that can compromise the intestinal barrier and cause abnormal permeability. Research has identified a protein called zonulin as one primary culprit.  

Zonulin increases intestinal permeability, including that of the tight junctions between intestinal cells. It has emerged as a critical link between leaky gut and adverse health consequences such as autoimmune diseases. (22) Gliadin, a component of the gluten protein, promotes leaky gut by increasing zonulin production. You can learn more about the connection between gluten, zonulin, and leaky gut in my podcast with researcher Dr. Alessio Fasano.

The Health Consequences of Leaky Gut

It is possible for someone to have leaky gut even if they don’t have gut-related symptoms. In fact, studies indicate that it can manifest as eczema, autoimmune disease, obesity, and many other chronic health conditions. (23, 24, 25)

If leaky gut is left untreated, it will be nearly impossible to improve other health issues, such as blood sugar control and cognitive function. That’s why it’s so important to focus on promoting a healthy gut barrier.

Seven Ways to Heal the Gut Naturally

The first step in healing the gut is avoiding the disruptive factors I listed earlier that harm the gut microbiome and gut barrier.

While it’s not always possible to completely steer clear of those factors (an adult cannot control, for instance, whether he or she was born by C-section or breastfed), there are still many ways in which you can improve gut health.

1. Remove Processed, Inflammatory Foods from the Diet

Transition to a whole foods-based, nutrient-dense diet. Identify and remove foods that are causing inflammation, such as gluten and dairy. Inflammatory foods can be identified via food sensitivity testing or an elimination diet.

2. Add Fermentable Fibers

Eat plenty of fermentable fibers, found in foods such as artichoke, onions, garlic, and plantains. These fibers fuel the growth of beneficial gut bacteria and help heal leaky gut.

3. Add Fermented Foods

Fermented foods are rich in probiotics that help restore a healthy gut microbiota and intestinal barrier. Unpasteurized sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, yogurt, and kefir provide probiotics in abundance. However, make sure you’re not struggling with histamine intolerance before increasing your intake of fermented foods, as fermented foods can exacerbate symptoms.

4. Seek Treatment for Any Intestinal Pathogens

Gut infections are an important cause of gut dysbiosis and leaky gut. If you—or your clients—are currently seeking treatment from a Functional Medicine practitioner, ask about testing like the Genova GI Effects test or GI-MAP. These can identify specific bacterial, fungal, or parasitic imbalances causing gut dysbiosis.

5. Emphasize Healthy Sleep Habits

Get seven to eight hours of high-quality sleep a night to support your gut health. I recommend sleep hygiene practices such as maintaining a regular sleep schedule and avoiding blue light exposure at night. Blue light exposure can be minimized with blue-light-blocking glasses and the f.lux and Iris apps.

6. Develop an Exercise Routine

Develop a sustainable exercise program that will keep your gut microbes in shape. If you’re an endurance athlete, you may need additional gut support to mitigate the adverse effects of frequent endurance exercise on the gut microbiota, such as increased intestinal permeability. (26)

7. Manage Stress

Make stress-reduction practices, such as yoga or meditation, a part of daily life. Mindfulness apps such as Headspace or Calm can be helpful for people who are new to meditation.

791 Comments

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  1. I THINK I HAVE ACID REFLUX AND IT IS BACKING UP INTO MY NOSE AND BURNING THE SKIN. HAS ANYONE EVER HAD THIS PROBLEM AND ANY IDEAS ON HOW TO FIX THIS PROBLEM ELEANOR

    • Hi
      I had to sit upright 24/7 for at least two days. I took protonox twice day and still do as this GERD experience got me twice. I bought a wedege pillow for my bed
      So far no GERD but I have other abdominal problems more around the belly button since gallbladder problems
      Grace

      • Hi Eleanor and Grace!
        When you have acid reflux it means you don’t have enough acid in your gut! So taking antacids only make it worse in the long term since it reduces acid in the stomach…stomach acid is one of our main defenses against undesirable bacteria that enter the body through the mouth. Acid blocking drugs transform the normally inhospitable acidic environment of the stomach into a friendly place for bacteria to grow and multiply, potentially throwing off your microbial balance and causing dysbiosis.
        You need a great probiotic that can kill gut yeast – you have symptoms of Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth.
        Acid blocking drugs can also lead to overgrowth of undesirable bacteria in the small intestine, causing symptoms of gas, bloating, and belching to that can mimic the signs of acid reflux in someone who is already being treated- a classic example of how pharmaceutical intervention for one problem can actually create disease elsewhere. Cutting down on caffeine, dairy, alcohol and eating more plants and less fat will help banish your reflux and boost your microbes without swapping one problem for another.
        I have been using some amazing natural health supplements that really help with acid reflux symptoms and healing the gut. You can join my Facebook group and learn more about these products.

        • Can you please provide your Facebook group site. I am having many of the main symptoms of Acid reflux that really won’t go away.

      • Apple cider vinegar. It sounds strange to add acid but if you do, less acid will be produced. I know a guy who no longer takes meds for acid reflux. He takes 1-2 table spoons of ACV in 8oz water in the AM daily. It’s not the best tasting thing, some people add honey and lemon but it really works. And better than drugs in my opinion.

        • I have relatively mild reflux compared to many, and still exceedingly annoying. I carry small container of fennel seeds with me and chew on some when I feel that reuguritation cough. It relieves it immediately for me most of the time.

    • I have started some natural supplements that have helped with a LOT of issues for myself and many others. The probiotic has digestive enzymes and antifungal that kill off that bad yeast in our gut. Then there is a fully methylated multivitamin with aloe that has also helped heal and restore what my body absorbs from my food! No more bloating, cravings, fatigue. No idea it was a gut issue before I started addressing my gut!

        • I take a probiotic named Probio5. It contains enzymes that can kill the yeast and restores healthy bacteria. It’s the best product I’ve ever taken! I love it and it has changed my health. I used to have the worse digestive issues as well as cramping, bloating, constipation, nausea etc….
          I actually had a lot of mystery symptoms and I now know that they were caused by yeast overgrowth in the gut. I wish I d known about it sooner. Totally changed my health

        • Probio5 is by plexus. If you join plexus, please use referral
          900115938
          The vitamins are the xfactor.
          I hope that helps!

  2. I have been struck down with gastro recently. It follows similar bouts last year and the two previous years.
    The strange thing is that it always occurs in March.
    Then it always when I am under the pump. Hard training or pressures at work.
    I do want to find some answers.
    I don’t have a bad diet but it could be better I guess.

    • When you say the pump, what do you mean? Proton pump inhibitors? they might bring relief if you have acid reflux, but it comes at a price. Stomach acid is one of our main defenses against undesirable bacteria that enter the body through the mouth. It increases your overall risk of infection by changing the bacterial make up of the gut. You are at increased risk of contracting diseases and viruses because you don’t have enough acid in your stomach to repell these viruses…

      If you struggle with acid reflux, let me know. I can give you some tips about how to naturally get better without taking medication.

  3. Missed checking box to notify on previous post. Please reply to this post. I had a healthy digestive system and then I read something about diatomaceous earth and its benefits and begin to take it about 6 months ago. Shortly after starting the diatomaceous earth I noticed my bowels were a little stiff so I stopped. Now 5 months later, I’m having serious problems. Do you have any advice. Thank you

  4. I had a healthy digestive system and then I read something about diatomaceous earth and its benefits and begin to take it about 6 months ago. Shortly after starting the diatomaceous earth I noticed my bowels were a little stiff so I stopped. Now 5 months later, I’m having serious problems. Do you have any advice. Thank you

  5. Hi my name is Kameron,
    For the past 2 years now I have been suffering with stomach issues. I have been experiening nausea but not vommiting. That along with the feeling of gas being trapped..constipation, and diarrhea. These synthomns happen everyday almost, I’m to afraid to go get test done do you have any idea what it could be and what I should do to help cope with this?

    • This is EXACTLY what my daughter has been going through for a number of years now, so much so that she could have written this herself, and she too is afraid to go for the test. Her gastro doctor said IBS, but wants to do an endoscopy. I’m sure she will have to get it done tho because this is a constant everyday thing. I just wish there was something to help her and bring her relief. And I hope that for you as well. And I too ask does anyone know what can be done to help with this?

      • I have also been suffering for several years now. I have seen many doctors, no one yet to diagnose anything. Now I am awaiting new test results. I am 21, how old is your daughter Diane?

        • Hi Anne, Sorry to hear you’re suffering too. My daughter is 15. This has been going on for a while now with her, and still no diagnosis here either. I just wish there was something I can do for her.

          • Was there something specific that happened before she noticed her systems? For me, I went to Bali for a family holiday and haven’t been the same since. So I am fairly certain I had a parasite, or have one, and it’s screwed up my gut flora completely.

              • I have had these issues for a while myself and over the past couple years was made aware of the fact that my grandma has hystamine intolerance and my mom has issues I’ve always know about. That being said I too have to deal with histamine intolerance and have many of these issues and they come and go as I regulate the histamine in my body and the foods I eat.

            • It’s likely you could have picked some sort of parasite up in Bali. I’m a colon hydrotherapist, I say a 26 yr old man last year who’d had severe diarrhoea for 4 years after eating a fine green bean imported from Kenya, before it was washed. After 3 colonic treatments & a parasite enema he was cured!
              I also saw a lady who’d travelled Asia extensively eating in the jungle off banana leaves, she had 3 treatments & a parasite enema, she released a large worn about 14″ long.
              Health started in your gut, the natural way is the best way.
              Good luck x

      • I’ve been suffering from similar issues for over two years. About 6 months ago I found a Dr who did a full range of tests, but not an endoscopy. The tests showed that I didn’t need one, and identified a whole host of parasites that I’ve picked up from travelling around the world. I’ve now done two courses of antibiotics that seem to have killed everything (although it’s still too early to say for sure), and I’m now throwing every probiotic I can at the recovery process. The antibiotics have been horrendous but certainly worth it, if nothing else just to feel like I’m trying something new to get over this two year slump. My health isn’t 100% yet by a long shot, but the brain fog seems to be lifting and I feel like progress is being made. After two years of misdiagnoses this feels like the first progress worth speaking of. The Dr I went to practices Functional Medicine here in South Africa, but I believe it originated in the US. That’s certainly where my samples were sent for testing. I’m looking at Chinese medicine and acupuncture to help the recovery process as I’ve heard this can also help, at this stage I’m willing to try just about anything.

      • Go get her I begard. Pepper mint tab.wont hurt but it sure helps I have ibs hope it helps her

      • get the book
        BREAKING THE VICIOUS CYCLE by Elaine Gottschall
        I’m Going to try this myself
        my life is miserable,and all stems from
        the gut….
        i mean miserable cause my i have
        leaky gut…pain in muscles,brain fog
        and more….the doctors don’t help.
        You got to help yourself..
        diet is the most important in order to heal…I hope this site does not mind
        that i posted about the book.But
        i’m only trying to help others and myself.God Bless Everyone…
        ciao!!!

    • I have similar to that but its been a little longer for me having it. Have you found anything that works?

  6. I have had digestive issues for years now. I found out that I have a narrowed terminal ileum but I don’t think that is the main cause of my pain. It comes and goes but I am pretty much on a paleo diet. Even then I go through times where I have bad stomach pain, my skin get prickly, dizzy all the time and just feel like death. My diet is good but I am at a loss to how to feel normal again.

    • You should look into Plexus and the product called triplex. It has helped me and many others heal their gut and getting their body to function how it should.

    • I may be very late to this conversation, but I would encourage getting tested for Hpylori. I suffered from an Hpylori infection that was misdiagnosed and totally missed by doctor after doctor for over 15 years. Pain in the stomach or small intestine area is a primary symptom. There are others. I saw an Immunologist who finally treated me for it. My ND and my G.I doc even missed it. I had also taken mastic gum and other natural remedies for years and it didn’t resolve it. I finally did the pharmaceuticals along with natural remedies and a gut healing diet and it worked.

  7. Hi
    I am wondering if any of you have any experiance with healing your gut and how it affects your mental state. Im currently struggeling with anxiety and brain foog and emotional unbalance. My body is fragile and I need to rebuild myself. there are so many different advice out there so its easy to get lost and figure out what information to trust. A lot of people recommend the gaps diet or heal your gut diet to heal mental unbalance do you have any experience with that?

    • I struggle with the same exact things! A healthy diet is the #1 cure. I went raw vegan for about a week and by day 5 I could think 10x clearer, I felt happy for no reason at all and my anxiety was non-existent. I felt like a functioning human being again. I’ll be honest…It was hard to stick with that diet but anything worthwhile takes work…you have to want your health more than temporary satisfaction…stay away from wheat, sugar & caffeine it is the enemy. I recommend reading “The Grain Brain” it’s a great book. If you increase your greens and cut out processed foods you will so much feel better!

  8. I am so depressed. I thought (foolishly) that I had things under control with my digestion. I started taking Pepsid AC back in the 80’s, and it went from there to taking Prevacid for years. After the kidney failure scares, I stopped Omeprazole but am still taking Rantinidine daily, sometimes 300 mg or more. I have also had bouts of varying time frames of IBS, cramping pains, constipation, which literally put me down. I hadn’t had an attack in a long time, and Thursday morning, woke up with the familiar feeling of trapped gas, and agonizing belly pain which lasted all day and yesterday. Today, I feel a bit more normal, but every time I eat I feel bloated and yucky. I didn’t eat much at all yesterday, just had no appetite. I need to change something. But, I am afraid of having to go have tests done, and feel I could do it myself, if only I could commit to it.

    • Dont give up!
      Start with detoxing your colon naturally. Eat prunes drink its juice! Get a baseline that will heal your colon. If eating healthy isnt in your diet then all those drugs dont aid you because in the long run drugs can only go so far! Rantinidine is telling you that you have another problem. Find out get tested even if only to assure that it is not an ulcer or more serious problem. Facing the truth was my first step, my second was a bit of advice gave me today. Create a healthy routine, do the things that are necessary to survive so you can heal! Start taking steps if you need take a friend or confidant that you can talk to when you need to clarify what is going on! Stay focused, dont stray for his (UC) ulcerative colitis he starts with Two glasses of water and his metamucil stirred in while he takes his meds for UC, why the metamucil ? Because he takes Morphine for pain and realizes that Opiod induced constipation will become a reality if not attended to. So attend to what you can with natural organic foods, and , if, there are complications then take meds! Your goal is to go to eating what will ease your pain and suffering. Edible, medicinal, hemp is an alternative that has had positive results in the UK for patients with IBS, Chroans, and other digestive issues. Explore the alternative to give you a better quality of life! Merry Christmas, Hannukkah, kwanza, or whatever your traditions are during the holiday!

      ,

    • If you continuously take pills/medications and you see no improvement- why not make the decision to take a BREAK from it? We have become slaves tobpopping pills in our mouths that we think its the ONLY way tobsolve an issue. The truth is , it may mask an issue but it NEVER CURES it. Listen to your body – sek out ways to do fats juic duets, water fasts- there are natural waya to cleanse the body. People hundreds o years ago lived longer than us and theybhad no pills to take. Find your balance- find nature.
      Stop doing the same thing reeatwdly- remove certain foods from your diet.

  9. I appreciate everyone confusion in navigating their gut issues. I’ve struggled my whole life and it wasn’t until a few months ago when I was diagnosed for parasites, bacteria and Candida.
    Overnight my runny tummy stopped, following the doctor’s herbs and diet. He changes both every few days depending on how my body is doing. For example, many foods I had been eating too much of “tested bad”. And many things I thought I had to avoid (lentils, yams, etc.) were actually super okay. Love this doctor, feel like I’m finally on a road to recovery! (Kiniseologist/DChiro in Fircrest.)

    • Please help! My sister has had so many problems list above. Her doctor has had her on 12 different medications at a time. Her gut is destroyed. Please let me know who you’ve seen to help you help. I feel like without help from a natural doctor things could become fatal. Please help!

  10. I’ve been a “legume believer ” for years and It’s just so confusing and worrisome for me to read some article that says how it actually works the other way like “leaky gut” etc. while some other articles are stating the opposite. I’m starting to be a fan of bentilia pasta, one way to vary the food I serve for my family specially for my picky eaters (letting them eat pasta without them realizing it’s pure lentil) and then voila! another articles you’ll read says it’s bad.. How frustrating! But thanks for this article anyway, It’s worth the read.

  11. Hi–I’m confused about fermented foods- I have had Lyme and Sjogrens and now Eczema. When I eat a little kraut or kimchi (sorry) but I get SO much gas. Should I add fermented foods later on? Can’t be good to give my system so much gas.
    Any advise is appreciated. Trying to heal my gut.

    • @laura NEVER eat fermented foods (pickles, olives, kimchi, sauerkraut, apple cider vinegar, etc) if you have Candida/Yeast, even if it’s a mild case of it, as fermented foods make the candida/yeast much worse. You want to ‘clean up’ first by going on the candida/yeast-free program for 42 consecutive days.

      Fermented foods are an excellent source of probiotics, etc., but are only for those who are candida/yeast-free.

      SOURCE: Holistic doctor told me this 12 years ago and every year from early January to mid-February I continue taking probiotics but give up ALL fermented foods and all sugar, gluten/white & wheat flour, dairy/yogurt, (except for organic butter) canned and microwaved foods as well, and stay on the 6 week yeast-free clean up diet. It’s hard but it works.

    • I just learned that I am prob histimine intolerant, which means my body does not break down histimines well. So any foods high in histimines or foods that release histimines (called histimine liberators) can cause me to have hives, severe headaches, congestion, and a runny nose. I have eliminated these foods and I feel much better.
      Kimchi and any fermented food will cause intestinal issues as well as the reactions I listed above.
      Look up histimine foods, etc… and see if that helps u feel better.
      Kiki

  12. It’s s bit strange that there is no mention of MSM powder. I have been having some stomach problems for over a year now. I am 48 years old male. I was advised by somebody to go for MSM powder to solve the problems mentioned by many of the people in this forum. In general for stomach health. Any comments?

    • After no help with antibiotics etc, I remember what our German mothers did when we children had intestinal issues. So the only way I managed to get rid of my stressful situation that made going out of the house difficult to handle, was eating cream of wheat cooked with water & a dash of salt for a week & later for breakfast only. This seemed to clean & rebuilt the colon flora & I was able to re-introduced healthy full meals step by step after without further issues. And I reduced dairy & alcohol intake to nearly 0. It was THE game-changer for me!!

  13. I’ve read through most of the posts. And I’ve tried many different methods over the years. I have chronic constipation with bouts of severe diarrhea and nausea. I take Align daily. Helped at the start. At that time I tried the FODMAP diet. Things were good for a couple months. But it’s definitely hard to stay on track and expensive. I can’t afford organic foods (and doesn’t really see a difference). Plus one week you read, do this, they next is don’t do that but do this. I’m at my wits end at this point on what is the right thing to do. And that frustration just increases my gut issues. It’s a never ending cycle. I try something, works for awhile, body gets immune to it.

    • I used to struggle terribly with my gut (I had terrible cramping and was running to the bathroom up to 10 times every singe day)…I didn’t know that things could be different because I never had much change with anything that I did. Until I started Plexus ProBio5…it is a wonderful probiotic that has totally changed my life.

    • Look into seeing a Holistic Nutritionist. Mine is fantastic! Feeling better since I started her regiment in May. Lost 12 lbs and feeling much better.

    • I just posted my own experience with cream of wheat. I ate it cooked in water & a dash of salt for a few days with almost nothing else, then added blueberries (which I forgot to mention in my post).
      I keep eating cream of wheat for breakfast often. It has a cleansing effect for me & stabilizes my gut in a very comforting way. No wonder our German mothers fed us cream of wheat for any intestinal issues. But no dairy for me – just a little for my Cappuccino. 😉

    • Please watch the film documentary “Food Choices” – as you, I also are currently and have experienced overtime gradually multiple health issues that the doctors will only treat with medications, which have made me worse. I finally said, “No More”!! It all relates and goes back to what we put in our bodies. Please watch this film, it will lead you to where you want to be in life, and it will change your life if you are tired of feeling and being sick and don’t know why. I went to my town’s health food store, talked to a nutritionist and invested in things to start healing my insides, NATURALLY. I also started detoxing, but the biggest part of all this is a lifestyle change in diet, not temporary but for life. I started the ‘PLANT BASED DIET”, I’m on day 5 of No Processed Foods, No dairy, No Meats, No Sugar. If you watch these documentaries : FOOD CHOICES and FAT, SICK and NEARLY DEAD – You will see. Good Luck and God Bless!!!

  14. Hi am having a serious problem with my stomach for a couple of months now i have been having a server stomach pain early mid mornings ,it’s seems each and every food i take react with my stomach kindly assist me on the way forward

    • I had this problem where food hurt. I had such pain each time I ate. I ended up having surgery in which they found tissue wrapped around my intestines acting like a tourniquet. I hope you are seeing a doctor and having tests. Wishing you quick healing.

      • How much that type of surgery would cost if you don’t have health insurance ? What type of doctor would you see ? I have the worst digestive system, and believe having a damaged gut. Dairy or not, anything i eat make gassy all day long. Tried anything, but nothing helped. I’m in desperate situation

        • Did you tried digestive enzymes? Pancreatic to be specific.
          Flatulence can occur if your gut filled with candida or parasites.
          Did you have possibility to check this?

        • You should go on a water fast for a week to let your body heal and read “starch solution” to know how to change your diet.

  15. I’m so confused… This recommends sweet potatoes for leaky gut… but sweet potatoes are notoriously high in oxalates… and oxalates need to be avoided until leaky gut is healed… I don’t know what to eat anymore! Following a VLC diet for weight loss has been disastrous (long story – still recovering)! Any ideas on how to meet a carb requirement of 100 net grams, while healing my gut and staying both low oxalate and low fructose?!

    • I completely understand how you feel. There is so much Information out there and everybody says something different – it’s hard to decide what’s the right thing to do.
      I recently stumbled upon the virgin diet. It’s an elimination diet, to find what foods cause problems for you. It might help, it won’t hurt for sure.

  16. I’ve been reading about plant-based, raw food, paleo diets etc. On one hand I totally agree with the plant-based diet arguments, but I recently stumbled onto the “Autoimmune Solution” by Amy Myers. The argument is that to heal the gut and fight the inflammation you should cut out gluten, grains, legumes, and mostly eat veggies, fruits and animal protein. What are your thoughts on this? Are grains and legumes really that harmful and inflammatory?

    I myself had my thyroid removed a month ago due to papillary cancer (stage 1, didn’t spread, no radioactive iodine treatment). I’m now on Levothyroxine, but the meds don’t seem to work and my TSH levels are 30+ instead of 2. I also have many symptomps of the leaky gut, lazy bowel, inflammation and parasites. Could the diet high in dairy, grains and legumes be the culprit? What should I eat/supplement with to get better? I’m currently eating mostly plants and grains, some legumes instead of meat, fish 1-2 times a week. I supplement with liquid chlorophyll, take Pau d’Arco + Cat’s Claw, and eat cod liver daily.

    Many thanks!

    • Dairy is VERY allergenic. Take it out of your diet for a while. Grains need to be taken out as well. Work with a Doctor and tests yourself for IgG food sensitivities and eliminate all foods that are reactive. Legumes are hard to digest. Take them out for some time as well. Fish Oil is a must for inflammation. Metagenics EPA/DHA oil (get the highest dose possible), in liquid form. Take 2000 IU daily of allergen free Vitamin D. Instead of Levothyroxine, Try Armour Thyroid. You need to get your bowels moving!!! Very important to do that. You may be allergic sensitive to Supplements that you are taking, be careful. Email me and tell me how you’re doing.

      • What if you can’t afford a functional medicine doctor?! I mean seriously, who can?! No one I know and certainly not me. Does that mean I should just give up to a life of horrible health?

        • No you don’t, Leslie. You need to read. There are tons of good books out there available at amazon, used, for not much money. You can assemble a whole library for the cost of one trip to a practitioner. Achieving good health is probably easier with a functional/holistic doctor or naturopath but it can be done without that.

      • A great way to keep bowels moving is to eat a half cup of walnuts each night. It keeps me regular and has eliminated the need for a nap during the day.

    • I would find a doctor who will allow you to switch to armour thyroid medicine. Way better than synthroid or any synthetic replacement medication. It’s made from pig thyroids and Carries all 5 hormones that human thyroids make. Levothyroxine is only t4. If you bring this up, they will probably suggest adding cytomel, a t3 medicine. Really fight for armour. It will make you feel normal! I just saw Hillary Clinton is on armour for hypothyroid. You can bring that up if your doctor says it isn’t a reliable drug. I had my thyroid removed 2 years ago for cancer as well. I suggest eating lots of fruits and vegetable. Fruit is mainly where you get your antioxidants to kill any free radicals floating around, the culprits for cancer growth. Good luck!

  17. Been doing my research on Dysbacteriosis, i can finally see a light at the end of the tunnel knowing more information about this condition.

  18. About 2 yrs ago I was actually taking a probiotic (Acidophilus) and magnesium, plus vitamins and omega 3, plus many others, I have a cabinet full, but I can honestly say I didn’t feel any benefits, i took them for months to give it a good chance, but they didn’t help me atall, so my faith in these is a bit questionable, only as I’ve tried and tested with no great outcome. It could be that it wasn’t a good probiotic or magnesium supplement. Can anyone recommend a really good probiotic?

    • I did exactly the same. 23 yrs of post traumatic stress issues. No probiotic at any price even water kefir had the slightest effect. Milk kefir however is working and my body is fighting back. A one of purchase of grains (<£10) and a pint of organic whole milk a day and my health is turning around. I had minimised dairy due to chronic sinus condition so this was quite a turn around for me. Nothing shop bought can provide the genuine article. It's the current day dilemma. I also stopped a raw food smoothe daily routine as this is too aggressive for a perished stomach. Meat and bone stocks, fish and egg yolks feed and nourish the gut lining and animal fats that we have been programmed to eliminate in order to purchase processed oils for commercial benefit to big business are proving essential for energy and brain nourishment to stave off depression, alzimers, etc. These are now waste produce for butchers and free with a general purchase. There is no need to pay for these benefits but for a rewind in domestic practice and insisting on organic, free range and home made not processed food. Good luck.

      • Great input Paul… been on this road for years myself… it’s a true journey that is not easy or favored by any of the modern day “commodities”. It’s all about the mighty buck and each man for himself… sad but true.. educate yourself, don’t give up and you’ll surely succeed!

      • I wanted to chime in and tell everyone that colostrum has done wonders for me. (It is the first milking a cow gives to its calf, much in the same way a human mother gives a child mothers milk). Colostrum heals the gut the quickest, I’ve found. Plus, when you get it from a pasture-raised source, they combine thousands of different cows that all have different immune factors so you get the combination and benefit of all of them. I get mine from MIP Colostrum in New Zealand; however whichever one you choose will do your gut wonders – and mine was ravaged from 4 months of antibiotics for Lyme. Very quickly it has healed my gut! Within weeks. All allergies, diseases, etc just go away when you heal it, because the integrity of your immune system, which is in your gut, has been restored.

        Before I took it, I read all about it and had tons of doubts, but it has helped tremendously, now several weeks/months later. I’m very thankful for colostrum.

          • Take it orally; it’s in powder form. Take it several times per day, about a teaspoon each time, so about 3 or 4 teaspoons a day. I have healed my gut in a few short months. Start out slow, working up to the teaspoon per serving; because you will most likely have dieoff reactions as a result of its work! Best of luck to you.

        • Surely you have not thought that when you are drinking that calves milk that the calf in turn does not get it but instead a trip to the slaughterhouse. I will never understand why people think they have to drink milk from another animal. No other species on earth does that.

          • People are far too indoctrinated, fearful, lazy and blinded by their long held belief systems to consider such a thing.

          • Well there aren’t very many species that are as intellectually advanced as humans capable of recognizing beneficial nutrients from an other species’ milk. Granted I stay away from dairy for the fact that the bad outweighs the good in most cases. In the case Andrew is mentioning it proves to be the opposite because he has obviously reaped the benefits of this nutrient and healed himself. The point of my message here is that your justification of not drinking milk from another species is because no other species does it, is not a very solid justification as to why we shouldn’t. No other species on earth drives a car or sustains a job. Humans do a large amount of things that no other species do. It’s in our nature.

          • Apparently you’ve never seen farm animals nursing other species when the mother has died. I’ve seen a dog nurse kittens, horse nurse a cow. Seriously, get over yourself.

    • Taking probiotics alone is often not sufficient. It’s important to completely change your diet and life style as well. This can seem daunting, but it’s really a matter of choosing to live or inevitably become sick. It’s worth the effort! You’re worth the effort!

    • Best probiotic Garden of Life Raw Probiotics. refrigerated and worth every penny .
      I have Hashi’s have had for years .
      take many a supplement … and am 100 percent gluten free.
      I am miserable when i run out of these.

    • I tried just about every probiotic on the market! Severe digestive issues. I use Probio5 by Plexus and have never looked back. My belief is that most probiotic on the market did not contain enough live cells for my needs. Probio5 has over 2 billion per capsule and we can see and feel the difference. I will NEVER BE with out this product. Just my opinion and experience.

        • Everyone’s microbiome is different..it could just so happen that Plexus Probio5 has just what you need to satisfy what you were lacking in your gut. Lucky you.

          • I read both good and bad reviews about Plexus Probio5. I guess what works for one doesn’t work for another. With probiotics it’s not a ‘one size fits all.’

            FYI – the negative reviews said that it isn’t good for those with allergies, as it contains Yeast, Gelatine and Brown Rice Powder.

            • I do have a friend that gave ProBio5 a shot with her son who had severe allergies. She had tried lots of other things and nothing seemed to work. But he did great on it in spite of a brown rice allergy. You’re right though, everyone isn’t the same!

    • My life has been completely changed by Plexus ProBio5. It has 5 strains of beneficial bacteria [that can actually live until it reaches your intestines (because it’s freeze dried)], digestive enzymes, and an antifungal.

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