• Karen Murray Heffron

The 4 R’s to recovery

Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, once stated that “all disease begins in the gut.” If someone suffers from one or more of almost a hundred autoimmune conditions, impaired digestion is most likely a factor. The newest buzzword the past few years is “Leaky Gut” meaning the 1 cm lining that separates the evil outside world from your precious inner ecosystem has become permeable due to inflammation of some sort, and partially digested food is sneaking into your bloodstream. After a while, the immune system becomes hypervigilant and becomes sensitive to a number of environmental factors. There is a way to calm the immune response down without suppressing with steroids by using the 4 R’s:

Remove – Often the foods we tend to eat the most are the ones we become sensitive to such as hard-to-digest proteins like gluten, dairy, and corn. Any foods like sugar, hydrogenated oils, and caffeine create inflammation and irritate the lining of the gut. By removing these foods, and treating any potential infections/parasites, it takes the" fuel away from the fire" and gives immune system a chance to calm down.

Replace – Bring on the vegetables, herbs, and fruit in moderation! An alkaline environment like this will help bring nutrients in. Raw vegetables, if tolerated, provide enzymes to allow proper digestion.

Re-inoculate – A diet high in processed sugar feeds bad bacteria and depletes vital minerals and good-bacteria in your gut. These are essential to aid in digestion, make neurotransmitters, and convert thyroid hormone for more energy. Eating probiotic foods like sauerkraut, organic yogurt, or taking probiotic supplements can bring your gut back into balance.

Repair – In order for the lining of your gut to become less permeable, certain vitamins and herbs can be helpful such as fish oil, zinc, L-glutamine, vitamin C, slippery elm, and aloe vera.

A healthy gut and proper digestion may make all the difference in alleviating certain symptoms. It never hurts to take a couple of weeks and experiment with this and see if it makes a difference. Your gut will thank you!

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