How to heal your gut

Functional medicines 4R approach is sure to help you and your gut heal.

  1. Remove the bad. The goal is to get rid of all the things that negatively affect the environment of the GI tract such as inflammatory foods, infections and gastric irritants such as alcohol, caffeine or drugs. Inflammatory foods including gluten, diary, corn, soy, eggs and sugar can lead to food sensitivities. Infections can be from parasites yeast or bacteria. Removing the infections may require treatment with herbs, anti-parasite medication, anti-fungal medication, anti-fungal supplements or even antibiotics.
  2. Replace the good. Add back in the essential ingredients for proper digestion and absorption that may have been depleted by diet, drugs (such as antacid medications) diseases or aging. This includes digestive enzymes, hydrochloric acid and bile acids that are required for proper digestion.
  3. Reinoculate with beneficial bacteria to re-establish a healthy balance of good bacteria. This may be accomplished by taking a probiotic supplement that contains beneficial bacteria such as bifidobacterial and lactobacillus species. I recommend anywhere from 25-100billion units a day.
  4. Repair your gut by providing the nutrients necessary to help the gut heal itself. One of my favourite supplements is L-glutamine, an amino acid that helps to rejuvenate the gut wall lining. Other key ingredients include zinc, omega 3 fish oils, vitamin A, C, E as well as herbs such as slippery elm and aloe vera.
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Note: Always check with your doctor before starting any alternative treatments. Supplements and therapies may interact with your medication and cause unintended side effects. Alternative treatments shouldn’t replace traditional treatments or medications. Some people have reported feeling increased benefits when combining the two together.
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