In order to maintain or restore the body, we need to have certain processes functioning properly. One of the most important factors in overall health is to have a healthy digestive system so that we are processing and absorbing all of our nutrients, which aids in producing neurotransmitters, fighting off foreign invaders and eliminating waste. We also need to have a healthy blood sugar system, as well as adequate intake of water, vitamins, minerals and fatty acids, which comes with a balanced whole food diet. When we have all these systems functioning in health, the body will often restore balance and repair most disease states.
Digestion is one of the biggest keys to health. Are you feeding the body what it needs? Does it have the correct enzymes and gut flora to produce the neurotransmitters you need for healthy brain function? Many disorders of the intestines are caused by lack of stomach acid, which actually causes acid reflux. When the stomach does not have enough stomach acid, then the food sits in the stomach and rancidifies causing gas, which leads to reflux. Stomach acid is necessary to break down your foods to absorb them. Taking a proton pump inhibitor for acid reflux actually reduces the body’s ability to digest fats and proteins and can lead to bone loss. A body uses vitamin B-12, zinc and magnesium to produce stomach acid. These are often low in those with GERD. Try to increase your intake of these essential vitamins and minerals.
Additionlly, many of the foods we eat are inflammatory. That means, when you eat them, the immune system reacts and causes pain and inflammation everywhere in the body, including bloating in the gut. The most common inflammatory foods are gluten, dairy (except ghee), unfermented soy, sugar and corn syrup. Some people also react to nightshade vegetables (bell peppers, tomatoes and eggplants). In order to figure out if any of these are a problem for you, it is important to remove them all for 2-4 weeks, then add them back one at a time. The Whole30 diet is a good way to try this.
To start on the path to optimal health, I suggest you stop all corn syrup drinks, add more fruits and vegetables and stop eating at fast food restaurants. Making slow changes can really make a difference to your health in the long run, and a naturopath can help guide you.
Julia McLean, owner of Fine Fettle in Northfield, is a traditional naturopath. Visit her shop at 16 Bridge Square or finefettle.store. To find out more about how to heal your body and remove inflammation and pain, contact Julia at firstname.lastname@example.org or 952-240-0469.
These statements are solely the responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Entertainment Guide editorial staff.