The Body Ecology Diet (BED) Column
......with Donna Gates
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Tuesday, April 26th, 2011:
A Key to Healing Your Gut: How to Alleviate Chronic Inflammation
A permeable gut can present itself in a multitude of different ways.
What begins in the gut can very easily find its way into health conditions such as:
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Inflammatory bowel
- Multiple food sensitivities
- Autoimmune disorders
- Candida and chronic yeast overgrowth
- Brain fog
- Chronic pain
Any of these symptoms should raise a red flag that your gastrointestinal tract needs some attention.
Sometimes, with proper care, the gut can heal itself. Other times, the damage to the intestinal walls is so severe that a person will need to not only give special attention to healing the intestinal lining but also consistently maintain a diet free of pro-inflammatory foods for a lifetime.
The intestinal epithelium is the largest mucosal surface in the body.
Even though the intestinal tract seems deeply internal, it provides a barrier between the rest of the body and the external environment. When healthy, the epithelial barrier to the intestinal tract is selective in what it allows to pass through to the internal environment of the body.
There are two ways that a substance can pass through the epithelial lining:
1. Paracellular: The paracellular pathway is when material passes between the epithelial cells, which are maintained or connected by what are known as tight junctions (TJ).
2. Transcellular: A pathway that is across an epithelial cell.
Tissue damage or antigen exposure (creating a food sensitivity) will cause inflammation of the intestinal lining and loss of normal transport - namely intestinal permeability. When this happens, an environmental trigger or antigen will pass through the gastrointestinal barrier to the gut submucosa. Once unwanted antigens reach the blood, they can contribute to the chronic disorders mentioned above.
When an antigen moves from the gut lumen (exterior) to the submucosal layer (interior), it triggers an inflammatory immune response and a central neuroinflammatory response. Once the central nervous system catches wind of the systemic inflammatory signal, eventually the epithelial cells of the blood-brain barrier lose their integrity, allowing the blood-brain barrier to be breached. The result is neuroautoimmunity. (3)
Tracking food sensitivities, gut dysbiosis, and multiple inflammatory complaints is extremely important.
Once the gut becomes permeable, the health of the entire body is at risk. This permeability could be due to the destruction of paracellular or transcellular pathways. Healing these pathways is of top priority.
One of the most important nutrients that you can give to your body to support the repair of the intestinal lining is L-glutamine.
L-glutamine is the preferred fuel and nitrogen source for the small intestine. Several studies have shown that it supports the regeneration and repair of the intestinal epithelia. Research has also found that L-glutamine increases the number of cells in the small intestine, the number of villi on those cells, and the height of the villi. (2)
Body Ecology Vitality SuperGreens uses a special form of L-glutamine called GlutImmune.
GlutImmune is the most bioavailable and stable form of glutamine available. It delivers up to 10 times more glutamine into the bloodstream than L-glutamine. GlutImmune is covalently bonded, meaning that it is a form of glutamine that is bonded to other amino acids on an oligopeptide chain.
Therefore, if you have a permeable epithelial lining:
- Following a special diet is necessary. Staying strictly on a non-inflammatory diet means that you follow Body Ecology Diet principles, while also excluding foods to which you have a personal sensitivity. With inflammatory conditions, it is all or nothing. A nibble on your friend's leftover pizza crust can cause an inflammatory response to persist in the body for 6 months.
- Body Ecology encourages the daily addition of probiotic foods and probiotic beverages to your diet. Benefical microflora work in concert with your immune system to cool the inflammatory fire in the gut.
- Supplementing with therapeutic doses of glutamine is key to healing the lining of the gut. Research indicates that L-glutamine is critical in healing permeability and reducing inflammation of the intestinal lining. (3) Body Ecology's GlutImmune in Vitality SuperGreens delivers up to 10 times more glutamine than L-glutamine.
WHAT TO REMEMBER MOST ABOUT THIS ARTICLE:
Poor gut health can cause symptoms like chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, food sensitivities, chronic pain, and so much more. The gut can heal itself with the proper care, but in some cases, intestinal damage can be so severe that a person will need to avoid inflammatory foods for a lifetime.
If the gut becomes permeable, it leaves the health of the entire body at risk. One of the most important healing nutrients to support intestinal health is L-glutamine to fuel the small intestine. Body Ecology Vitality SuperGreens contains a special type of L-glutamine known as GlutImmune to provide healing and reduce chronic inflammation in the intestinal lining.
2. JPENJ Pa renter Enteral Nutr January 1999 vol. 23 no. 1 7-11
3. Van der Hulst, von Meyenfeldt, Deutz, Soeters, Brummer, von Kreel, Arends. Glutamine and the preservation of gut integrity. The Lancet, Volume 341, Issue 8857, Pages 1363-1365
Learn more from The Body Ecology Diet book: