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Biohacking Your Gut Health Using The “Four Rs” of Gut Healing

Tennee | December 1, 2019

 Your gut is your gateway to

health or illness and what you put

in your body is the key.

 

You house an incredible 25 feet of intestines! This is where you absorb your nutrients from food, make your feel good neurotransmitters and where a vast network of immune cells and nerve cells reside. When your gut isn’t working properly, it affects every system in the body from your brain to your hormones and immune system.  


Your gut health or imbalance is the result of your food intake, your stress response, immune system, sleep and lifestyle habits. When stressors are put on your digestive system, the gut lining becomes permeable and inflammation is the result. 

 

Lower GI infections such as parasite, bacterial and fungal overgrowth, SIBO (small intestinal bacterial infection) and toxin overload creates a permeable gut. Leaky gut is a key term used often occurs when there is chronic infection, toxin overload or food sensitivity reactions. All these will which will trigger an immune response that results in inflammation.  

More information on Leaky Gut can be found on my blog post

What is leaky gut and how do you heal it? 


Signs of leaky gut include:



  • gas
  • bloating
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • brain fog
  • allergies
  • cravings
  • headaches

IF YOU ARE EXPERIENCING SYMPTOMS OF LEAKY GUT, IT IS IMPORTANT TO IDENTIFY WHAT IS CAUSING THE INFLAMMATION AND WORK TO CORRECT THE DAMAGE. IF LEFT UNCORRECTED THESE SYMPTOMS CAN LEAD TO HEALTH CONDITIONS THAT CAN BECOME DEBILITATING AND CHRONIC.


Some of the health conditions connected to leaky gut may include but are not limited to:



  • food sensitivities (commonly gluten and dairy)
  • autoimmune disorders such as Crohns and colitis, celiac, RA and fibromyalgia
  • thyroid problems such as Hashimotos and hypothyroidism
  • inflammatory skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis
  • weight gain
  • mood disorders such as depression and anxiety
  • IBS/IBD
  • chronic constipation/ diarrhea
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Fortunately if you want to get to the root of your GI imbalance there is a process or formula that functional medicine views as an effective way to reestablish health in your microbiome. This process supports the removal of infection, inflammatory foods and any toxins that may be causing inflammation. You then works to repair your GI lining and reestablish a healthy terrain. This is known as the “Four R’s of GI Health”: Remove, Restore, Reinoculate, Repair.


The "Four Rs" of GI Health:

Remove, Restore, Reinoculate, Repair.

1. Remove



The first step is the easiest as you can start this process on your own and it entails cleaning up your diet.

Eliminating foods that are causing inflammation are a great first place to start. The top 7 inflammatory foods are gluten, dairy, soy, egg, sugar, alcohol, and corn. If you are working on your own, I would recommend starting with gluten and dairy and give your body a couple of weeks to adjust. This alone can create huge shifts in energy and inflammation alone. 

If removing foods are not enough, you will want to consider testing for bacteria, parasites, fungi and viral load. A comprehensive GI panel such as the GI map can be extremely helpful for a thorough assessment of your GI health. The GI map also has markers that provide information regarding the health of your digestive function such as calprotectin, elastase, steatocrit and beta glucuronidase markers. This information can help the practitioner to determine what type of digestive support should be used as well as the level of inflammation in the gut.

2. Restore



The next step is to help restore whats missing. This may look like digestive enzymes to help with digestion and absorption. It may involve bile salts or support for your stomach acid or it may require addressing specific nutrient deficiencies. It depends of the situation but its important to put in whatever support will help your body assimilate nutrients.

3. Reinoculate



Beneficial probiotics and prebiotics can help to reestablish a healthy terrain and feed the good bugs. It is important to work with a trusted healthcare provider with this piece since some probiotic formulas  are better for certain health conditions than others. For example, people with SIBO tend to do better with soil based probiotics than lactobacillus.

4. Repair



This is the fourth step in healing your gut lining. There are a number of vitamins and herbs that can be used to help repair the intestinal lining including:

Zinc carnosine - Strengthens the gut lining and helps to modify the tight junctions which limits gut permeability.

/Source: NCBI

Glutamine - Helps the gut cells to regenerate and heal faster. Also helps to seal tight junctions in the gut and supports the immune response while balancing mucosal production in the gut.

 

Vitamins A - Moderate levels of vitamin A  have been shown to keep the immune system in the gut from over-reacting by regulating the b cell response. Vitamin A also supports the mucous membranes in the digestive tract and has been shown to improve the tight junctions .

 

Vitamin D - This critical vitamin is viewed as a GI immuno-regulator. This means it has the ability to regulate gastrointestinal infllammation. It is important to note that most people are Vitamin D deficient.

/Source: NCBI

Marshmallow root - This herb is mucilaginous and is used to soothe your digestive tract and lower inflammation in the gut. This herb is especially helpful for GI issues such as ulcerative colitis and constipation.

 

Turmeric - This anti-inflammatory herb reduces proinflammatory molecules in intestinal epithelial cells. This helps to decrease chronic inflammatory disease.

 



The process of putting in place the four R’s can take some time depending on your specific needs, but will result in better energy, digestion, stamina and health. Please remember that everyone's healing journey is going to look different. Practice loving kindness throughout and make sure to put in place lifestyle support such as meditation and yoga. Lowering stress levels will reinforce the work you are doing with your gut. 

Wishing you a Radiant Reality!

Tennee


I work with clients specifically around gut healing.

If you would like to schedule a 20 min complementary phone call you can reach me

at radiantrealitynutrition@gmail.com or 707-972-5893


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