Gut Healing Diet
By Steven Horne, RH (AHG) & Kimberly Balas, ND
In people with healthy Gl tracts, food is completely digested, the nutrients absorbed, and the non-nutritive components eliminated. In people with impaired digestion and
intestinal irritation, however, undigested food proteins are
absorbed into the blood stream, causing an inflammatory
immune response that can manifest as a host of other disorders including migraines, autoimmune diseases, allergies,
Hashimoto's thyroiditis, GERD, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBID) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Diet is absolutely essential to healing the gastrointestinal tract.
There are three main diets one can follow, which will help the gut to heal.
** The Specific Carbohydrate diet
** The Gut and Psychology Syndrome diet (GAPS)
** The Paleo diet.
Each of these diets is a little different, but all are well known for their GI healing abilities. There are some commonalities between these diets, which should be a basic starting point for anyone with Gl tract problems.
For starters, all simple sugars and refined carbohydrates should be eliminated from the diet. This includes refined sugars of all kinds, white flour and white rice. All gluten-bearing grains should also be eliminated, which include wheat, spelt, kamut, rye and barley. In fact, it is a good idea to eliminate all grains from the diet, at least in the beginning until the gut has healed.
Dairy may also be problematic because the bacteria love to feast on the sugar in dairy, lactose. Many people also have problems with a milk protein called Al Beta-Casein. Modern dairy cows (Holstein) have this protein, which releases a peptide called BC-M 7. This protein can cause neurological impairment, autoimmune reactions (including type I diabetes), inflammation of the blood vessels, reduced intestinal motility and excess mucus secretion. Goat milk products and some traditional breeds of cattle do not have Al Beta-Casein. so, goat milk products and cultured dairy foods can be beneficial for some people, yet other people may have to eliminate all dairy foods.
Also eliminate all processed foods. Instead, eat a diet comprised exclusively of fresh, nutrient dense vegetables, fruits, and proteins (fish, eggs and meat).
Cultured foods, especially cultured vegetables, are especially beneficial.
While on this diet, the following supplements can be used to help heal the gut:
Digestive Bitters with added goldenseal powder taken about 15-20 minutes before every meal with a large glass of water.
Digestive Enzymes and/or PDA taken with meals.
Probiotic supplements and/or cultured foods with every meal.
2 teaspoons daily of cod liver oil (for the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA) or 4 capsules of Omega-3 EPA.
2 cups of bone broth per day.