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Chronic Digestive Disorders Are On The Rise

Chronic digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux or GERD, Crohn’s disease, and celiac disease have become commonplace in our country.  Most treatments include medications such as Zantac, Prilosec, Prevacid, Tums or Rolaids, or surgery to resolve; however these approaches do not address the underlying causes generating the symptoms.

Digestion involves the breakdown of ingested foods and liquids into vital nutrients to be utilized by our cells for energy, repair, and maintaining our bodies.  Poor eating habits lead to blocked or sluggish digestive processes that may cause pain, cramping, bloating, flatulence (gas), belching, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, the disorders mentioned above, as well as many autoimmune disorders.

Other health challenges caused by improper eating habits leading to digestive disorders include ulcers, arthritis, skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, allergies and food sensitivities, migraine headaches, diverticulitis, colitis, and chronic fatigue.

Elizabeth Lipski, Ph.D, 2005, in her book Digestive Wellness lists the following situations as contributors to chronic digestive disruptions:  chronic stress, cigarette smoking, infections, environmental toxins, irritants, and heavy metals, lack of exercise, lack of dietary fiber, medications including prescribed and over the counter, low stomach hydrochloric acid, alcohol, poor food choices, and genetics.  Considering  many items on this list are under a person’s control, recognizing one’s symptoms and undertaking positive corrective steps with improved dietary choices will begin to relieve symptoms and orchestrate a healing process.

Whole foods dietary choices are rich in the essential vital nutrients supporting healthy digestive processes.  Fresh fruits and vegetables, especially organically grown insuring no pesticide use provide vitamins, minerals, dietary fibers, trace minerals, and simple and complex carbohydrates. Free range poultry and grass fed meat sources provide balanced proteins rich in essential amino acids.  Grains, seeds and nuts provide healthy oils, proteins, minerals, and fiber.  Use only healthy oils such as olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, and flower oils labeled as “high oleic” such as sunflower and safflower oils.  Nut and seed oils such as hemp, flaxseed, sesame, and walnut oils are best.  Organic sources again are preferred and these oils provide Omega 3, Omega 6, and Omega 9 essential fatty acids so critical for cellular membrane health and cellular signaling processes.

It becomes important to clean out the cupboards of old rancid oils and lard.  Purchase only oils in dark bottles.  I recently found an organic coconut oil based “lard” and made a rhubarb/berry pie.  The crust was wonderful and not full of overly processed and trans-fatty acids.  Buy oils in small sizes to insure using them in short time.

Each person has the power to improve their digestive and detoxification processes reducing some of the uncomfortable symptoms faulty digestion can create. By undertaking the simple steps above, one’s health will drastically improve.

Krystle Shapiro, LMT, MSHN recently completed her Masters degree in holistic nutrition.  She owns Touchstone Massage Therapy and Nutrition Plus!  She may be reached at 208/290-6760.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

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