ABS Blog

You Are What You Eat (Part 3 of 3)
Thursday, September 8th, 2011

Imagine that you’re just getting over being sick. You had to take some antibiotics to get healthy, and in the process destroyed all the GOOD healthy bacteria that are necessary for digestion and absorption. Compare this person lacking healthy bacteria with someone who has been taking supplements and food that promote healthy bacteria. They are not getting the same calories and nutrients out of the food. Here’s another way to look at it. Two kids are in a class, identical in every way. One is blindfolded and has earplugs in during class the other has no restraints of any sort. After 12 weeks of school, do you think they walk away with the same knowledge? NOPE.

 

The small intestines are about 20ft long and food is primarily digested there. There are medications and certain foods that cause your small intestine to lose its ability to figure out what to absorb and block. This condition is called leaky gut syndrome.

 

What causes leaky gut? Doctors are not completely sure, but agree on a few factors: medications such as antibiotics (their job is to kill bacteria – good AND bad – this medicine is an equal opportunist); NSAIDS like ibuprofen (cause damage to intestinal lining); diets full of junk food, sugar, trans fats, processed foods etc., not to mention diets low in FIBER; and the last culprit to add to the list … STRESS! Stress affects just about everything when you think about it. Stress = less blood flow to your organs = food sits around longer while being digested = more problems.

 

If you think you have leaky gut syndrome, go to your doctors and get tested.

 

There are a few things you can do to maximize absorption in the intestines and possibly correct leaky gut syndrome.

 

DISCLAIMER: Again, I am not a doctor. These are steps you can take that can be found all over the Internet. Always consult your doctor first.

 

Protocol Options:

  • Remove gluten and dairy from your diet for a couple of weeks. Both gluten and dairy can be inflammatory to the small intestine and blunt nutrient absorption. (Drinking milk is actuallymeant for babies and babies only!)
  • Supplement with probiotics, prebiotics, antioxidants and glutamine.
  • Probiotics and prebiotics will help replenish the good bacterial flora. When supplementing, look specifically for lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidobacteria bifidum. Also, the best brands are usually refrigerated.
  • Antioxidants: I like buffered vitamin C, E and r-ala or na-r-ala.
  • Glutamine: Take 10 grams with each meal (60-80 grams a day). Follow this for 5 days then maintain with 20-30 grams a day (best post-workout). Did I mention glutamine is the primary building block on the intestinal lining? This load can help seal the lining, eventually leading to no more leaky gut syndrome.

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