Love Your Gut, Heal Your Gut, Heal Yourself

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Do you suffer from seasonal allergies, weight gain, hormonal imbalances, mood imbalances or an autoimmune disorder?  If so, you may have a leaky gut.

The National Institutes of Health estimates that nearly ¼ of us (about 70 million) suffer from digestive issues: gas, bloating, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation and nausea.  In functional Medicine we believe that these symptoms may be displayed in your gut yet their effects are systemic and can affect the whole body.  We believe that the gut is the core of our health and that it is essential to have a healthy gut in order to have a healthy body.

It’s all about the gut!

A properly functioning digestive system (gut) is critical to good health. In fact, 60 -80% of our immune system is located in our gut and 90% of our neurotransmitters (chemicals responsible for regulating mood) such as serotonin are made in our gut.  Problems in our gastrointestinal (GI) tract can cause more than just stomach pain, gas, bloating or diarrhea they can be the root cause of many chronic health problems.  Gut imbalances and leaky gut have been linked to hormonal imbalances, autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and hashimotos thyroiditis, diabetes, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, anxiety, depression, eczema and rosacea, just to name a few.

Love your gut! Heal your gut!

In functional Medicine we use a simple approach that we call the 4R program to heal your gut.  I walk you through this process in my latest eCourse The Myers Way Guide to the Gut.

 

The 4 R Program

1. Remove

Remove the bad.  The goal is to get rid of things that negatively affect the environment of the GI tract such as inflammatory foods, infections, and gastric irritants like alcohol, caffeine or drugs.  Inflammatory foods such as gluten, dairy, corn, soy, eggs and sugar can lead to food sensitivities. I recommend The Myers Way and IgG food sensitivity testing to determine if any foods are a problem for you. Infections can be from parasites, yeast or bacteria. A comprehensive stool analysis is key to determining the levels of good bacteria as well as any infections that may be present.  Removing the infections may require treatment with herbs, anti-parasite medication, anti-fungal medication, anti-fungal supplements or even antibiotics.

2. Replace
Replace the good. Add back in the essential ingredients for proper digestion and absorption that may have been depleted by diet, drugs (such as antacid medications) diseases or aging.  This includes digestive enzymes, hydrochloric acid and bile acids that are required for proper digestion.

3. Reinoculate
Restoring beneficial bacteria to reestablish a healthy balance of good bacteria is critical.  This may be accomplished by taking a probiotic supplement that contains beneficial bacteria such as bifidobacteria and lactobacillus species.  I recommend anywhere from 25 -100 billion units a day.  Also, taking a prebiotic (food for the good bacteria) supplement or consuming foods high soluble fiber is important.

4. Repair
Providing the nutrients necessary to help the gut repair itself is essential.  One of my favorites supplements is L-glutamine, an amino acid that helps to rejuvenate the gut wall lining.  Other key nutrients include zinc, omega 3 fish oils, vitamin A, C, E as well as herbs such as slippery elm and aloe vera.

No matter what your health issue is, the 4R program is sure to help you and your gut heal. I have witnessed dramatic reversal of chronic and inflammatory illnesses in a very short period of time by utilizing this simple approach.

 

My favorite gut healing smoothie!

1/2 – 1 cup almond milk

1/4 teaspoon (100 billion units) probiotic

1 scoop (5000 mg) L-Gutamine

3 stalks red kale

3 stalks dinosaur kale

1/2 cup frozen organic berry mix (raspberries, blueberries and strawberries)

2 scoop protein powder

Blend

kale-smoothie

Interested in learning more about the gut?

eCourse__GUT

Take our Guide to the Gut eCourse! This course outlines Dr. Myers’ method in diagnosing and treating gut infections in order to achieve optimal gut health. Our objective is to empower you to discover the root cause of your symptoms and be able to self-treat at home with food and supplements. During the course, you will have access to a number of worksheets, shopping guides, and checklists that you can complete in the comfort of your home. The more worksheets and checklists you complete, the more you will able to determine which protocol is best for you. The focus of this 4-hour eCourse is to provide a detailed understanding of the importance of a healthy gut and the tools to achieve optimal gut health.

The Myers Way Guide to the Gut eCourse includes:

  • 4 hours of information
  • Guide to digestion
  • Signs that you have a leaky gut
  • Risk factors for leaky gut
  • Personalized gut exam
  • Symptom tracker
  • 4R Program guidelines
  • Gut-soothing recipes

… and much much more!

You will learn about:

  • Digestion and absorption
  • The development and recommended treatment of leaky gut
  • Testing and treatment of various gut infections
  • Gut-healing supplements and foods

Did you like this article?

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37 Responses

  1. Posey Plays says:

    This is great — thanks for the recipe!

  2. The four R’s (Remove, Replace, Reinoculate, Repair) are essential to good health. Thank you for sharing this information in a way that is so easy to assimilate. The green juice recipe is fantastic. I usually juice organic celery, parsley, kale, chard and cucumbers. This Gut Healing Smoothie recipe has inspired me to add some more wonderful ingredients.

  3. [...] For a Gut Healing Smoothie recipe see my previous blog on Loving Your Gut. Healing Your Gut. [...]

  4. ZammyB says:

    Hi! I need supplements that are corn free, dairy free, gluten free, soy free and no flaxseed either. Can you give me suggestions?

    • almost 100% of our supplements meet those requirements. We have 2 with a soy derivative and 2 with corn derivative. All are gluten and dairy free and flaxseed free.

    • JC says:

      You may want to investigate the Freeda SCD Multivitamin. I know it is gluten and lactose free, and I believe it is also soy and corn free. Not sure about the flaxseed.

  5. Michele G says:

    Dr Myers, Do you have any comments about SBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). I noticied it wasn’t mentioned in the removal part of your recommendations. Thank you.

  6. Michele G says:

    Whoops… SIBO

  7. [...] at levels of good bacteria, check for infections and leaky gut. I then apply a functional medicine4R approach to healing the gut. This is essential! More than 80% of your immune system is in your gut. If you [...]

  8. [...] removing 100% of gluten from their diet is not enough.  The damage that has been caused to the gut lining must also be healed. Additionally, I often find that there are other infections in the gut such as parasites, Candida, [...]

  9. […] As a functional medicine physician, I believe that inflammation is the root cause of most illnesses. Whether you struggle with digestion, energy, depression, or weight, my approach to healing always aims to reduce inflammation. The majority of our inflammation comes from our diets and our guts. For this reason, my first step in helping to restore the health of my patients is to change their diet and heal their gut. […]

  10. […] the toxic and inflammatory foods for a certain period of time. In addition, I have them follow a 4R program to heal their gut. The 4R program is as […]

  11. […] sweet wormwood, grapefruit , barberry, bearberry, and black walnut.  In addition, I follow a 4R program to heal the […]

  12. Bethany McGrath Sponseller says:

    I thought l-glutamine only worked if you took it on an empty stomach? If so, how can it be effective in a smoothie?

  13. […] clinic are SIBO and gluten intolerance, which cause a leaky gut. In this case, I suggest reading my post on healing the gut, and over time you should be able to stop the DAO and go back to eating histamine-containing […]

  14. […] they can order a comprehensive stool test for you.  My motto is, it all starts in your gut, and your gut is the gateway to health. A healthy gut makes a healthy […]

  15. Huia Crosby says:

    What about with a strong salicylate sensitivity??

  16. Natalie says:

    Wouldn’t the fiber from the kale irritate the cilia of the stomach and keep it from healing? I’ve found success going the GAPS (Gut And Psychology Syndrome) route: broths, meats, fats, squashes, very soft cooked veggies and adding foods in gradually.

    • twinspeedr says:

      In general, my understanding is that fiber cleans the cilia and allows the natural mucous lining to repair itself when you consume a probiotic-rich diet as well. But again this should be what you are eating ALL THE TIME. Holistic dietary habits not remedial.

      I believe that pretty much all dietary “science” is only “pseudo-science” because true science is nearly with the variances in our individual diets and living habits out there. There are just too many variables. You need to do your own research and use reasonable trial and error to allow your family to live and eat in a more healthful way. In any event, if you want to eat right you’ll want to grow your own fruits and vegetables as much as possible.

  17. teresaspeer says:

    I already take a probiotic and supplement with L-Glutamine. Do I need to add them additionally to this shake?

  18. Sue Hnilicka says:

    Kale, kale, kale! Oxalates, oxalates, oxalates! Come on. High oxalate food can trigger pain and inflamation in the body. Getting tired of chasing the rat on the wheel here.Can you say “kidney stones!”

    • twinspeedr says:

      Moderation, Moderation, Moderation! (Assuming you have no GI issues present of course)

      Sorry, but kale is really good for you in moderation. We simply need to acknowledge that we must eat a good diet ALL THE TIME. If we eat garbage and then think that 2 giant kale smoothies per day will make up for it, then we are in for more of the anomalous pains, mental and gut issues we have today. Our diet needs to be approached holistically, not remedially. This is the key.

      Apologies if you already know this stuff, but there is too much F.U.D. out there these days and unequivocally demonizing perfectly good vegetables leads those seeking information to think that they cannot eat better because “everything” is bad for you in one way or another so “I’ll just go back to eating Hot Pockets and McDonalds”. I’m sure you don’t want to be the person to give them an excuse to to do that, right?

      • Sue Hnilicka says:

        twinspeedr, you are correct. I do not want people to not eat a healthy diet of all vegtables. And yes kale is deliscious and good for you. But I wish these articles would make people a little bit aware of moderation. And yes adding in “real” food like kale to everything from soup to smoothies is wonderful. But I wonder if people get the moderation and variety issue? You do make a very important point about the 2 giant kale smoothies not making up for a week of McD’s. Sounds like how some people go to church:) Sorry that is another article for another day.

  19. twinspeedr says:

    Drink Kefir from raw milk from grass fed cows and you will eliminate the “problems” that modern science thinks there is with dairy for most people. You will also get tons of probiotics in the process. You can replace lots of things with Kefir.

    Artificial supplements are not nature’s way. The problem is our food system. Damage our food with industrial production methods and shortcuts to increase production. Pesticides and herbicides through out our nutrient poor vegetables that were harvested before they were ripe. Bovine feed lots and chicken houses with 20-50x the number of animals that should be living there, all being fed a cheap totally improper diet sorely lacking in nutrients. Then try to sell us piles of supplements to replace what was lost and remedy the problems that they caused. We are all taught that this is somehow “normal”, folks it is NOT normal! This “Jetson’s” post-WWII “modern science knows better than nature” food anomaly is coming to an end and it was a failure, IMHO.

    • Andrea Winship says:

      IMHO, milk in any form is the perfect food———for the calf, not for humans; even in the raw, organic grass fed form. It is meant to take a newborn calf to an excess of 500 lbs or more and with all of its mothers innate, natural hormones is exactly what it does to humans. It does not do a body good!

  20. Colleen G says:

    Add some organic cinnamon and pure vanilla bean powder to that smoothie and see how extra yummy and healthy it is!

  21. Chelsea Long says:

    is it safe to take l-glutamine during pregnancy?

  22. Krista Daugherty says:

    How do you know when your gut is healed? I’ve been working on this now for quite some time. I removed gluten 2 years ago. Added probiotics, L-glutamine, aloe vera and other vitamins/supplements to my daily regimen.

  23. James Cross says:

    How about a good enema now and then, a high and low colonic, take fiber every night, phyllium to scrub the colon in the morning when you use the bathroom. By the time a person is 35 yrs old they have 3 to 43 lbs of undigested red meat in their colon. They eat bread with their meal, water and flour makes glue, don’t chew up their steak or meat real good, swallow it whole, wash it down with tea or coke, and shuabang, you have a piece of meat stuck in your colon, 98.6 degrees rotting in your intestine, causing a stink and releasing toxins everywhere. Get real people, You are what you eat and drink.

  24. James Cross says:

    I meant 3 to 4 lbs of undigested red meat, not 43 lbs

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