To Whom It May Concern…
This is your Gut speaking. I know we’ve met before, but sometimes I think you forget I exist. I’m here to tell you that really hurts, and not in an emotional way. I’m talking OUCH! I make loud noises and expel foul gas often, but you just laugh it off and keep ignoring me. Hence the sarcastic salutation…
I want this message to be heard loud and clear, so let me explain. I’m literally the core of your being. Yeah, talk about responsibility. I have to answer to a lot of organs for your actions. They don’t realize I can only do so much with what you give me. That means if you give me chicken fried steak smothered in gravy, I have to hear your Gall Bladder go on and on about how stressed out he is. And you don’t want to stress that guy out, trust me! He might start throwing stones.
But before you can make all of your other organs happy, you need to give me some love. I’m not being selfish here, continued inside… that’s just how it works. You take good care of me and I can give them what they need to stay healthy and happy too. Since we are clearly disconnected, let me explain how I work. You decide what food you want to eat (and by the way, your decisions have been terrible lately) and then you chew it up and swallow it. Or I should say “You are supposed to chew it up” because more times than not I see whole chunks of
food entering my stomach. And would it kill you to slow down and enjoy your meal rather than scarfing it down at your desk or in the car? (Note: It wouldn’t!)
Ok, so let me give you the rundown as simply as I can. You swallow the food, preferably well chewed, and our stomach secretes hydrochloric acid which converts pepsinogen to pepsin, the enzyme that helps us digest proteins. These juices and food churn and slowly move into the small intestines, but not before gastrin has reared its head and told our stomach to secrete more HCL. You see, when you eat poorly, too much and too fast, the result is gastrin and more acid. Yeah, I hate to break it to you, but you are responsible for that nasty acid reflux that causes us so much pain.
In the meantime, our hormones secretin and cholecystokinin go to work. They travel to our gall bladder and pancreas and say, “Hey buddies! We need some help here. Gall Bladder, we need some bile, and loads of it for all this fat. And pancreas, send down some bicarbonate and digestive enzymes. And you might as well keep it coming because with what he’s eating, we’re gonna need a lot.” The bile, bicarbonate and enzymes flow into your small intestines mixing with the food and this is where most of digestion takes place. Unfortunately your poor food choices and inability to slow down can create some real havoc here.
The larger food molecules and non-nutrient chemicals can be very abrasive to the micro-villi that line our small intestines and over time damages them. This in turn allows these food molecules to leak into the blood stream and guess what happens then? You not only rob your cells of precious nutrients but you also cause more work for your immune system. That’s right, you are now the proud creator of a leaky gut and food allergies. There are no gold stars awarded for this.
Then after ALL of that, the colon helps me get rid of what we didn’t need. That’s assuming he’s working well enough to move those toxins out. Sure would be nice if there was some fiber and extra water in there somewhere. Oh and I forgot to mention. You know that nasty gas
you pass all the time? That is your fault too. It is called dysbiosis and results from poor eating habits, poor digestion and means you have a serious imbalance in the good and bad bugs in your large intestines. Here’s a hint, look into taking probiotics, they are the good bugs. Trust
me, you need them!
So as you can see, I have a lot on my plate, and so do you. Quite literally I might add. So first on my agenda is to ask you a very simple favor – slow down and eat better! I mean seriously. Get it together. I know about the internet pal and there’s endless info on what to eat and how to easily prepare it. I also heard about this great book called The Ripple Effect of Toxicity and it’s got some great tips on better diet and lifestyle choices that will support me.
The second request I have is also fairly simple – look into getting me some enzyme support. I mentioned how many I need just to take care of your food, but I can only make so many on my own. There are these great things called supplements, and I hear they have some called digestive enzymes. There’s been a lot of buzz in the Gut community about how helpful they are and I’m thinking they’re onto something. I just think it’s worth trying. There’s gotta be something to it man.
If you can do this for me, I promise you we will start feeling better. Yes, I have that kind of power. Now that you know that, maybe you will take me seriously.
With love and affection,
By Probiotic 2 (March 2012) Transformation, Lisa Helffrich, RD