Thursday, March 17, 2016

My opinion of gut cleanses

One of the most common questions I get is: What do you think of gut cleanses?

My response:  Not a big fan.

That’s not to say that many people aren’t walking around with intestinal tracts that resemble their local sewer, but the problem is cleanse products can do more harm than good, plus people tend to use them for the wrong reasons.

Here’s why I say that.

A clean gut is a must
Most people are starting to catch on to the fact that your gut determines your health from head to toe.

It houses 70 percent of your immune system, absorbs nutrients which keep you alive, eliminates wastes and traps harmful pathogens, carcinogens, viruses and bacteria so they won’t make you sick (or kill you).

So clearly, your life depends on the health of your intestinal tract, and keeping it clean is not just a good idea—it’s vital.

How will I know?
At this point, you may be wondering if everything is OK in that area about 20 inches south of your mouth.

Well, here are some signs that your gut may be in danger of housing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sometime soon:
  • Frequent constipation or straining with BMs
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Rectal itching
  • Excessive gas
  • Frequent diarrhea
  • Unpleasant body odor
  • Bad breath
  • Coated tongue
  • Frequent and recurring infections (bronchitis, sinus infections, vaginal yeast infections, etc.)
  • Acne
  • Allergies
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
The more of those signs that apply to you, the more likely it is that your gut may be on the foul side.

To cleanse or not to cleanse?
The most popular gut cleanse products are things like enemas, colonics, teas and herbal formulas.

But beware because many of them can be harsh or downright dangerous.

Cleanses that are too harsh can cause a variety of adverse effects from severe cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting, to more serious conditions like an electrolyte imbalance. 

And in rare cases, fatal complications can arise that lead to kidney failure and death.

Of special concern is any product that contains cascara sagrada as it can be extremely dangerous to people with intestinal obstruction, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, appendicitis, stomach ulcers, diverticulitis or unexplained stomach pain.

Similar comments apply to senna, plus it can also lead to an electrolyte imbalance in some people.

Plus even if you opt for a “mild” formula, most are not tailored to a person’s individual needs and may do more harm than good.

The more important issue
The more important issue here is: Why is your gut so filthy to begin with?

Although there are many causes of murky intestines including medication residue, environmental toxins, and smoking, far and away the most common causes are a poor diet and bad digestion.

When you eat garbage, expect to BE garbage.  Remember, Mom always said you are what you eat and she was right on. 

Plus if your digestion is dicey, trust me, there is muddy residue inside of you.

Keep it clean—all the time!
The best approach is to just keep your gut clean all the time! 

That way potentially dangerous cleanses become a non-issue, and the helpful 25 feet of tubing inside of you can stay strong and sharp, and keep YOU healthy!

Here’s how you can accomplish this health- and life-saving goal:

Eat REAL foods
Real foods include fresh fruits and vegetables, meats, poultry, fish, eggs, whole grains, dairy and essential fats.

Avoid processed packaged foods with their boatloads of preservatives and chemicals that do nothing except add to your inner stink.

Make sure digestion is efficient
Avoid eating animal proteins and starches in the same meal—this combination is very difficult for most people’s bodies to break down, and can invite digestive fireworks down below.

Instead pair meats OR starches with vegetables and salads—you’ll see a huge difference FAST.

Plus a high-quality enzyme formula can help support your body’s digestive efforts. This is especially true for people who use acid reducers, the elderly, people with a long history of highly processed, nutrient-poor diets and people who have had gastric surgery or gallbladder removal.  

Support a healthy flora balance
Probiotic supplements provide crucial support to the intestinal tract by helping to repopulate your supply of friendly bacteria so they can in turn encourage strong immune functioning, proper nutrient absorption, and more regular BMs. The best choice is a multi-strain formula that contains both Lactobacillus species (for the small intestine) and Bifidobacterium (which populate the colon).

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