How to Make a Grumpy Gut Happy
Hyppocrates proclaimed that all disease begins in the gut. Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine has known this for thousands of years. Over the past few years, a few pioneers of western medicine have connected most health problems to an unhealthy gastro-intestinal (GI) tract. Most of mainstream modern medicine has yet to accept recent rediscoveries of this fact.
 

Some professionals, mainly those in psychiatry or psychology, have begun to tune in to the mental health and behavior issues connected to the gut. But the proof is in the healing. The Gut and HealthYears of bucking the system and struggling for research funding has led UK Professor Jeremy Nicholson to conclude ” … almost every sort of disease has a gut bug.” Initially, there was almost no interest in Jeremy’s research. But there has been more interest lately.

His focus has been on deciphering the roles of different pro-biotic strains, of which there are almost 40, and their relationship to how they signal areas outside the gut. It’s been discovered that our friendly intestinal bacteria go beyond even their important role of digestion.

The numbers of intestinal flora or friendly bacteria have to exceed the numbers of hostile microbes to be effective. If spread out on a flat surface, the inner linings of our GI tract would cover a tennis court. so there is room for huge numbers of friendly bacteria. Why should we care?  For starters, the friendly bacteria that colonize this vast inner surface produce the acids necessary to assimilate nutrients into our blood. Those acids transport our food’s nutrients through the gut lining in forms that our cells can recognize.

And that’s just the beginning. The friendly little gut critters also minimize microbes that aren’t so friendly. That includes fungal infections such as Candida. Even supplements don’t get absorbed sufficiently without the presence of substantial healthy intestinal flora. Healthy gut flora actually create Vitamins K2 and the B vitamins daily to maintain proper levels of those nutrients.

Healthy gut flora also signal appropriate reactions to pollutants and pathogens that trigger immune system activity. This activity includes T-cell actions. Many knowledgeable scientists have ascertained that approximately eighty percent of our immune system depends on the GI tract’s friendly bacteria.

Mental/Behavioral Connections to Gut Flora

It’s not just theory. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, author of Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS), has been curing children with behavioral problems in her UK pediatric clinic with dietary restoration and balance of intestinal flora. She learned her methods by curing her autistic son.

 

She has done a lecture of the United States explaining GAPS and how she has handled whole families with various GAPS problems, not just the children. Her book is available on Amazon. It outlines her findings fully, and includes her dietary solutions. She notes that early childhood diseases and behavioral problems often occur because the mother’s intestinal flora was weak or destroyed during delivery and the baby then inherits whatever its mother has to offer during its exit through the womb. Then there are vaccines and tainted foods to worry about. Perhaps this is why breastfeeding and avoiding vaccinations really does produce more healthy children. The behavioral and psychological disorders Dr. Campbell-McBride has treated successfully cover the full spectrum of what’s become epidemic over the last few decades. In her Michigan lecture, she noted her treatable and curable GAPS spectrum includes “autism, hyperactivity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, dyspraxia, depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, eating disorders and more.”

 

She has observed that these behavioral patterns overlap. They are not the separate boxes that conventional psychiatry has established to prescribe an array of toxic drugs.If damaged intestinal flora doesn’t affect the child psychologically, then it will physically. Asthma, allergies, and eczema appear during early childhood. With a damaged immune signal system, the child is also more prone to illness than someone with an intact immune system. More vaccinations exacerbate this issue. Antibiotics or intake from commercial dairy and meats tainted with antibiotics destroy our friendly flora. So do processed foods and GMOs, but there are dietary measures for restoring a healthy gut. Dr. Campbell-McBride has one in her book. Powerful probiotic supplements can help restore gut population initially. But probiotic sources from fermented foods and kefirs should be probiotic staples.

 
Words of advice
 
With all the times my wife and I, both of us over 60, have been prescribed antibiotics, only one doctor recommended probiotics, which are supplemental friendly bacteria. Even then, he only mentioned yogurt, and commercially sold pasteurized yogurt is lame when it comes to providing probiotics. So don’t wait for your MD to advise probiotics. Few even understand what they are.
 
If you have to use antibiotics for any reason or have used them in the past, you should get a probiotic supplement with high numbers of strains and high amounts of organisms, ranging in the billions.  Ultrabiotic is an excellent choice for older children and adults, and Pedia-Biotic is the best for younger children.
 
If you learn how to make kefir, it would be a good source of inexpensive probiotic organisms for GI tract maintenance. We make kefir with raw milk, but I’ve known others who get by using conventionally produced milk. You can Google either subject to find out more and order what is known as starter grains. Once you get those grains going after the first few batches, they multiply to the point of having to discard some while using the remainders for new batches. Or you can buy ready-made kefir at health-oriented stores.
 

Sources for more information include:

Why the Gut Connection Effects Your Brain http://www.alternet.org/food/150783…

Article by Dr. Campbell-McBride http://gaps.me/?page_id=20

For those who can handle some serious technical terms http://www.slideshare.net/metametri…

Your Health and Probiotics http://healthmaven.blogspot.com/201…

 

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