“I was looking for a cure in an arena where a cure does not exist.” Richard was wandering where many have wandered, where many still wander, and where many will continue to wander until their demise. He had the symptoms, and like most, he treated them. What other way could there be? Could there be another way?
“In truth, an estimated one out of every three Americans regularly battles digestive problems, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).” As evidenced by the three-billion dollars we spend each year on the over-the-counter laxatives, antacids, anti-diarrheals, and fiber, we have permanently cemented digestive problems into existence by only sugar-coating the symptoms. It has become normal to be gassy or bloated after your daily chewing and gulpings. It has become something much more sinister.
Fueled by these meds, is there any reason to believe that this digestive carnage is unrelated to anything beyond the symptomatic cry for relief? Richard believes so. Richard believes: “When it comes to treating ongoing medical problems, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, medication is the not answer. In these cases, medicines end up masking the patient’s symptoms when what the doctor needs to do is to determine the cause of the problem.”
It is powerful to know and menacing to not. As you pop another pill, plop down for another greasy Friday afternoon tasty treat, and breathe easily as memories of pain dwindle in the past, you soon realize the dwindling was only your cloudy judgement and that this Friday afternoon treat did nothing but re-kindle the already fiercely burning fire.
“This woman ate foods that were so irritating to her digestive system that they were almost the equivalent of eating glass.” You may be able to anesthetize the hell out of your gut with as many laxatives, antacids, anti-diarrheals, and fiber as you or your professionally licensed health care provider deems necessary to calm the fire, but sharp glass remains sharp even when you cope its feeling out of existence.
7 PROBLEMS WITH THE TRADITIONAL APPROACH
- Treating the symptoms and not the root of the problem.
- Traditional treatments make the IBS worse—Normal pH of the stomach: 1.5-2.5
- Raised above 3.5 by antacids → inhibits the acid responsible for protein digestion.
- Good Flora is weakened
- Bad Flora is encouraged
- Medications have unwanted side effects.
- “…far from benign.”
- Yeast & digestive flora imbalances
- Suppress immune system
- Food Allergies & Hypersensitivities are dismissed.
- IBS is often used as a catchall diagnosis.
- “IBS is not a disease; it is a collection of symptoms indicating that the body is out of harmony.”
- Doctors are often satisfied before their patients have been cured.
- Failure to recognize environmental factors.
THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
Richard estimates a travel time of 12-18 hours for your parcel of food to gallivant, unload its goods, and depart, but along the way:
- Enzymes are secreted.
- Acetylcholine—at the very sight, smell, or even mention of food, this neurotransmitter triggers a cascade of contractions and production of digestive juices (2-3 quarts/day).
- Muscles are contracted.
- Food is converted into energy.
STOMACH & HYDROCHLORIC ACID
Hydrochloric acid—HCl for short—is the stomach’s digestive juice:
- Kills harmful bacteria and microorganisms swallowed with food.
- Stomach lined with alkaline to prevent corrosion—HCl pH of 1.5-2.5
- Level declines with age.
- “…more than 30% of all people over age sixty have inadequate levels of hydrochloric acid in their stomachs.”
It can be viewed as the dagger that disrupts your digestion or it can be viewed as the gatekeeper to the very important inner environment. To view it as the latter, take a step back, only a few words, until you reach the word dagger again. You may view hydrochloric acid as that dagger that will bully your digestive tract each and every time you sit to have a bite or indulge in a particular liquid. You may be oblivious, and for that, let me make it all too obvious: you are that dagger, and no, you are not HCl…unless your parents named you Henrietta Clarence. If everyone were to mess with fire, cities would burn. When everyone messes with their diet, environment, and every other tangible lifestyle factor, we call that disease…and in this case, that disease is irritable bowel syndrome.
SMALL INTESTINE, BIG ABSORBER
Thirty minutes of travel, “…depending on the composition of the meal.”
- Main digestive organ
- Chemical breakdown of food is completed.
- Most nutrients absorbed into bloodstream.
- Gets digestive juices from:
- Pancreas—carbohydrates, fats, and proteins
- Liver—filters toxins, stores nutrients, makes cholesterol, and bile for digestion.
- Gallbladder—stores and concentrates bile.
COLON & ANUS
Colon, AKA the Large Intestine:
- Removes waste you cannot digest—2 quarts each day.
- Shed digestive lining cells
- Travel Time: 12 Hours
- Absorbs nearly all the water.
- Bacteria in the colon is harmless, if it is kept there…—but it can ferment with certain foods.
- Sulfur-based preservatives—bread, beer, potato chips, etc…
CAUSE & SYMPTOMS
IBS was at one time solely attributed to stress, but studies have indicated that those 40 million affected each year—women 2x more often—share physiological and psychological triggers. The common symptoms of IBS include:
- Abdominal cramping
- Mucus with stool
- Alteration between constipation and diarrhea
ACID BASE BALANCE
Richard makes note that a pH of 7.0—on a scale from 0-14— is neutral and that anything below this level is acidic, whereas anything above is alkalinic. As a former nursing student, we primarily focused on the slightly alkalinic 7.35-7.45 range that was regimented into our minds over the years. Other areas were noted, but our focus was primarily in recognizing the global significance of being within these safety parameters. Richard mentions the varying pH levels within our bodies:
- Blood & Tissues—slightly alkaline
- Urine—neutral/slightly acidic
“When the body is too acidic, every cell in the body is affected.” To combat these risky levels of acid, alkaline minerals are drawn to neutralize it:
- “…acidic diet can lead to nutrient deficiencies.”
“The body has compensating mechanisms to keep the pH at a steady level, but these systems can be overstressed when a person consumes a highly acidic diet—which is the typical American diet—on an ongoing basis.”
MEDICATIONS & SUPPLEMENTS
“I do not recommend the use of these medications in the treatment of IBS.”
- Many people sensitive to psyllium—a common ingredient in fiber supplements.
- Smooth Muscle Relaxants
“Some people want to take a pill and feel better so that they can go back to their old ways of eating.” As advertised on tv, these pills exist only because they produce profit. Tempting you to eat your favorite foods and to forget about their past offenses, these pills offer a middle ground where you can have both the inflammation and the dessert. I cannot help but chuckle when an ad pops up and a middle-aged man sits down to a sloppy joe or maybe some tacos, but before introducing these foods to his salivary glands more intimately, he pops a pill. There is no difference between this man and the metaphorical man who likes to get stabbed with rusty knives in the dark alleys of the night. Both have strange health deterring addictions, but there are currently no pills to push the gushing of a rusty knife out of sight and out of mind…unless you are tripping on something else of course.
FOOD SENSITIVITIES & ALLERGIES
“I have also had patients who thought they were allergic to a certain type of fruit or vegetable, only to learn from the blood test that they did not respond to the produce itself but rather to a pesticide residue left on the produce.”
- 10% are immediate reactions.
- 90% are delayed reactions—4-48 hours after.
- Food additives
- Food coloring
- Heavy metals
Symptoms of Delayed Food Allergies:
- Chronic digestive problems
- Recurrent infections
- Difficulty losing weight
- Severe fatigue after eating
- Holding water—not associated with menstrual cycle
- Dark circles under eyes
- Horizontal crease under lower eyelid
- Frequent stuffy nose/postnasal drip/clearing throat after eating
- Chronic swollen glands
- Anxiety/heart palpitations
- Unexplained skin rashes
- History of gallbladder disease
- History of aches
- History of antibiotic abuse
- Mental fogginess after eating
- Low blood sugar
MOST COMMON FOOD ALLERGIES
- FD&C Yellow no. 5
LEAKY GUT SYNDROME
To a degree, a leaky gut is how your body can become highly sensitive to foods that most can digest normally. Undigested foods can literally slip through these thin and tiny perforations in the digestive tract and be labelled as antigens. The trouble is that when something is labelled an antigen, it becomes an antigen. It is not as if this substance can slip off its Halloween costume and retain its original identity. Its original identity has not changed, only the body’s perception of that original identity has. It no longer needs a Freddy Krueger mask to scare because it is now recognized as the actual Freddy Krueger.
What causes a leaky gut:
- GI infection
- Viral Infection
- Poor nutrition/absorption
“Sometimes the long period of digestive rest will allow you to tolerate it again.” In short, Richard proclaims that eating the same thing everyday can lead to a leaky gut and that resting the gut may be in your best interest—”avoid it for life” if you reintroduce it for a third time and you have another reaction. He also writes that some sensitivities can be eliminated with a healed digestive tract. I feel his information is a tad bit misleading.
For starts, eating the same thing every day is not necessarily bad nor risky. Sure, if you deluge your body with an onslaught of unhealthy foods each and every day, the effects will culminate. However, if you eat truly nutritious foods every day and avoid all the fake stuff, you can be sure that your digestive system will be operating at its optimal level. As for reintroducing foods, I feel Richard is playing to the reader’s dietary addiction rather than to their health. As you begin to eliminate those foods that trigger and offset your bowels, you will be healthier. Richard opens the gate here for reintroduction and I wish to slam it before you even consider that option.
Our body has no absolute or peak levels, it operates on a system of balances. There is no definite pH, number of red blood cells, body temperature, etc…etc…etc… It is a balance, one that can signal us when our threshold has been breached. Too much and too little can trigger some spontaneous vomiting, diarrhea, respirations, etc…etc…etc… Eliminating the triggers brings the body into greater balance, a balance that can better tolerate whatever you choose to throw its way.
Trigger A, B, & C may have synergistically compromised your gut earlier, but after eliminating them, you feel great and ready to take another stab at these triggers. I ask why and truly wonder how you could possibly want to delve back into these triggers. Even if you only reintroduce Trigger B, why would you? Your body can tolerate it now, but toleration is only defined by your body’s ability or inability to churn out symptoms. The damages are smaller, but the damages are damages. If four glasses of milk a day killed you instantly, why would you reintroduce one while being on the verge to introduce even more?
“In my experience, almost all my patients with IBS are milk intolerant.”
“The milk industry has done a marvelous job convincing Americans that milk is a healthy beverage, but it is not. Cow’s milk is the perfect food for calves, but not for human beings. Milk does not, in fact, do a body good, as advertisers claim. Forget your milk mustache.”
- Lactose free—doesn’t help with true sensitivity
- Chronic exposure—more vulnerable to food allergies/IBS symptoms
- Calcium—leafy greens & other plant sources
- “…milk drinkers tend to have more problems with calcium deficiency that people who consume fewer dairy products.”
- 2002 Journal of Clinical Nutrition Study—veggies & fruit had a positive impact on bone health whereas dairy did not.
- Animal proteins—speed elimination of calcium from the body and make it more acidic→calcium can leach from bones, magnesium absorption can become disrupted→osteoporosis
- Milk calcium—we absorb 30%
- Plant calcium—we absorb 40-70%
“…most adults worldwide have some difficulty digesting dairy products”—other than northern Europeans.
- Almost all babies are born with lactase enzyme, but after 1-2 years, these levels drop off with an inherited predisposition to lactose intolerance.
- 70-80% of African-Americans, Native Americans, Jews, Asians—by adulthood
- Most people write off minor symptoms as being ‘normal’
Six Additional Reasons to Give Up Dairy Products:
- Undigestible proteins
- Putrefy and cause digestive problems
- Encourage the excess production of mucus
- Burdens respiratory, digestive, and immune systems
- Fewer colds & sinus infections when his patients give it up
- Pesticides, antibiotics, hormones, and chemicals in milk
- rBGH—insulin growth factor→Breast/Colon cancer, juvenile diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance
- Higher intake = greater risk
- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition Study (2001)—600mg of calcium vs 100mg of calcium from milk = 32% increased risk.
- Increased risk of hip fracture in women—Harvard University Nurses Health Study
- 78,000 women for 12 years
- Those who consumed the most calcium from dairy had the most broken bones, compared to those who rarely drank milk.
Candidiasis exists harmoniously as part of the natural flora of the digestive tract, in fact, these natural bacteria keep each other in check. But when problems arise and only the symptoms of these problems are treated, yeast infections can grow roots into the intestinal wall and other mucous linings. In doing so, it poisons the bloodstream with mycotoxins—toxins given rise by the fermentation of glucose, proteins, and fats. As it continues to be a menace, our body eventually makes an antibody to the candida. You may not see it yet, glance back a few sentences and let it be re-revealed to you that candida exists naturally, harmoniously, and plays a vital role in digestion.
Some Contributors to Yeast Growth:
- Low gastric juice levels—medications
- Body’s pH becomes to acidic
- “friendly bacteria”→cannot metabolize/control sugar/failure to thrive→yeast feasts on the sugar.
- Low pancreatic enzyme levels
- Incomplete digestion→yeast digests and releases toxins.
- High sugar diet/alcohol intake (broken down into sugar)
- Antibiotics—kill helpful bacteria
- Birth control pills encourage yeast growth
- Hormones raise the amount of sugar in the vagina.
- Pregnancy, menstrual cycle, & menopause too.
- Immunosuppressant drugs—steroids/chemotherapy
CANDIDA & CARBOHYDRATES
- Refined sugar
- Brown sugar
- Corn syrup
- White rice/bread/pasta/flour
…are converted to sugars and fuel a yeast uprising. As the yeast feeds there are rapid shifts in blood sugar levels and the pancreas overreacts by releasing too much insulin. The blood sugar drops and you inevitably crave more food—more fuel for the candida fire—and enter a temporary relief cycle. You eat, but it is never enough. You can splurge, but your condition will only worsen as the relief consistently subsides.
“Instead of turning to medications, you should create an environment that is inhospitable to yeast.”
- “Almost every patient I have ever seen with IBS has had yeast overgrowth as well.”
- “Candidiasis almost never occurs in people with healthy immune systems who eat a diet low in sugar and yeast.”
Richard serves up an excellent analogy to sum up our ineffective approaches in treating candida. Kitchen bugs can be eliminated by spraying pesticides in every nook and cranny and by setting little bug hotels, but this treatment is as effective as our approach in treating any illness with the modern mentality. It is a chronic treatment for an acute problem. Instead of removing the garbage, rotten food, etc…—AKA their food supply and what draws them to your kitchen—we hire a professional and pay them handsomely to nuke our kitchens.
The difference with medical care is the definition of being paid handsomely, but other than that, the approach is as reckless as hiring the exterminator. Temporary relief is achieved. Symptoms are painted over. And you schedule in advance for your next check-up because elimination no longer means to make extinct but to suppress until next month.
FOODS TO AVOID
- Sugar of any kind
- corn syrup, sugar cane, beets, dates, maple syrup, honey, molasses, fructose, dextrose, maltose, lactose, & fruit juices
- Artificial sweeteners
- Brewer’s yeast
- Baker’s yeast
- Fruits/Veggies with any mold
- If severe, avoid all fruit because it is readily converted to simple sugars.
- Fermented beverages & condiments
- Processed & Smoked meats/fish
- Canned, bottled, or frozen fruit & veggie juices
- Dried fruits
- Coffee & Tea
- Caffeine & mold on leaves
- Tends to develop mold
- Alcoholic beverages of any kind
FOODS TO EMPLOY
- Red Meats*
- Non-dairy butters
- Whole grains**
- Fresh fruits
*I could list all the benefits of becoming a vegan, but Richard pokes a nice little hole through meat-eating America—Animal proteins speed elimination of calcium from the body and make it more acidic→calcium can leach from bones, magnesium absorption can become disrupted→osteoporosis. Only minutes after he pokes it, it seems to disappear as the pages turn. It is as if he poked it only through those few pages and as you flipped on and eventually trudged upon his dietary recommendations, that hole was patched with paper. He then upholds a red meat, fish, and poultry diet as a go-to healer. Of all the literature I have read up to this point, not one author has mounted enough courage to unleash red meat as being beneficial to their readers.
I am perplexed, as you should be too. To have sliced and diced through the problems with animal proteins only to become a convert as his writing progressed?
**Refer to the section on whole grains & celiac disease.
HIS MEAL PLAN
Accentuate the Alkaline
Banish bread & other yeast foods
Drop dairy from your diet
- “Strive to consume only whole, unprocessed foods (organic if possible), and prepare them yourself.”
- “Avoid commercially prepared foods, which often contain additives and preservatives.”
- Dietary Reintroduction Phases
- Phase 1 (1-2 weeks)—remove foods
- Phase 2 (3 weeks to 3 months)—rotate and eliminate those that cause reactions
- Phase 3 (lifetime)—maintenance
- “Occasionally you can indulge.”*
- “Our bodies are resilient…”*
- Meat—”high-quality protein, but they tend to be high in fat.”—buy lean.**
- Dairy—Eggs, butter, and goat milk are okay.**
- Fats—not in excess, even the essential fatty acids
*”Occasionally you can indulge.” ”Our bodies are resilient…” The only thing resilient within the confines of Richard’s mind is his willingness to spring back into the war we are seeking to cease. Would you place some trash or rotten foods around the kitchen so that the bugs would come back? Then why would you want to trash your body and indulge in such ignorance.
**”high-quality protein, but they tend to be high in fat.” I do not feel my words need to be as redundant as Richard’s contradictoriness.
OTHER FOOD TIPS
- Chew throughly
- Drink 6-8 glasses of pure water each day
- Limit fluids during meals—dilutes stomach acid
- 3 meals & 3 balanced snacks each day
- Don’t overeat
- Certified organic fruits & vegetables
- Restrict salt intake
- Avoid chemical additives
- Hydrolyzed protein
- Sodium Caseinate
- No alcohol
- Become educated consumers—food labels
Omega-6 & Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
- Found naturally in plants, but also oils & fish.
Saturated/Trans Fatty Acids
- Avoid…found heavily in animal products.
- ↑ Cholesterol
- ↓ HDL
- Interfere with liver detoxification.
- Interfere with the function of essential fatty acids.
- Hydrogenated fats were created to prolong shelf life, avoid these non-spoiling foods.
STRESS & RELAXATION
A 2001 study—Journal of Clinical Psychiatry—at the Medical University of South Carolina found that somewhere between 50-90% of people who seek treatment for IBS also have psychiatric problems…
- Panic Disorders
- Social Phobia
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
I will proceed beyond this next quote, but I feel it does a fine job in outlining both the role of stress and its various triggers in the disease process. “An auto accident is stressful and so is buying a new car.” We often fail to recognize how a stressful day is a promoter of the disease process. We forget to relax and we tread on. I flipped through Richard’s pages of text internally debating his approach and only hoping he would not avoid factoring in stress to the IBS treatment equation.
“70% have enough bowel symptoms to be diagnosed with IBS.” This little statistic which could have been easily breezed over because it was just ten-stringed words amongst thousands, has stuck with me. I was compelled to know more because I was shocked when I learned that fibromyalgia patients suffer from digestive disturbances too. These few words glistened at the time and still remind me of how important the relationship between health and stress really are. Learn more about our fight or flight adaptive mechanism and how fibromyalgia patients have become maladaptive.
Fight, Flight, Freeze—AKA the stress response and or choice, triggers the hypothalamus (brain):
- ↑ Heart Rate & Blood Pressure
- Breathe Faster
- Muscles Tense
- Metabolism in High Gear
- Hearing Improves
- Pupils Dilate
- Digestive System
- Mouth dries
- Stomach churns & feel the need to clear bowels.
- Affects stomach acid content—oxygen is diverted away from the stomach during stress.
- Hormones—adrenaline, epinephrine, & cortisol
- Prepare for danger, but also interfere with digestion, reproduction, growth, and tissue repair.
- Ongoing stress leads to adrenal fatigue & no more hormones → IgA → leaky gut → IBS
- “Not surprisingly, during periods of stress, the body often becomes deficient in many key nutrients.”
The chronicity of stress is a bewildering impediment to maintaining a healthy body. You can eat the right stuff or you can eat the wrong stuff, but if you feel stressed, your body shuts sectors down, not as an act of aggression, but purely as a coping mechanism. We are prepared for acute attacks and will likely never be prepared to adapt to a war-like scenario.
*I am greatly intrigued by how such a little adaptation can be so counter-productive to overall health. I have to step back for moment and remember that these mechanisms allow us to adapt and survive. The operators—chemical mediators such as hormones, etc…—behind the fight, flight, or freeze response have no idea that societal norms necessitate such an attack. Milkshake, burger and fries, another cup of coffee, more meat, and a dash of another stressful day at work is the American way.
You may not slot yourself into all of those categorical norms, but that is just a short list. Broaden your health knowledge and you will begin to the see that the war you thought only existed on CNN exists at home too, and you are the perpetrator of your own territory. When oxygen is diverted away from the stomach during stress, food is left undigested and metabolic wastes build up because the stomach cannot produce enough enzymes. The acidic waste follows gravity and some rippling peristaltic waves into the thin-walled—thin for absorptive purposes—small intestine. Lacking a protective alkalinic lining like that of the stomach, the small intestine inflames and healthy bacteria cannot survive.
TYPES OF STRESS
- “Deep breathing helps relax the body and quiet the mind.”
- We breathe poorly when under stress.
- Transcendental Meditation
- Breathing & Heart Rate ↓
- Oxygen consumption ↓ by 20%
- Blood lactate ↓
- Brain waves—greater alpha wave activity
- Progressive Relaxation
“Regular exercise can relieve your IBS symptoms and improve your digestive health.”
- “…just half an hour of moderate exercise such as aerobic walking four or five times a week may be all it takes to make you feel better.”
- Journal of Gastroenterology Nursing Study—IBS women found to be “significantly” less active than control group.
- “…make you look years younger than your chronological age.”
- “The average American loses 10 to 20 percent of muscle strength between the ages of twenty and fifty and another 25 to 30 percent between fifty and seventy.”
- Strength training helps stave it off.
- Strengthens defense against disease.
- Cardiovascular disease
- Urinary tract infections
- Low back pain
- Lymphatic flow—delivers immune cells & eliminates toxins
- Immune System
- Mental alertness/Reaction time
- Muscle strength
- Sexual drive
- Short-term memory
Studies show that heart attack sufferers, with exercise, can reduce their risk of a second attack by as much as 20-25%, but…
- “You don’t have to spend hours in the gym to enjoy these benefits.”
- “…but don’t try to make up for lost time by increasing the intensity of your workout.”
…take it easy and do not exceed your limits. For some odd reason we seek an exercise regiment that has become a generalized struggle. A grunted run or an aching bench press…is it worth it?
“You cannot get all the nutrients you need from the foods you eat”—”…modern-day intensive farming methods and depleted soils.” Seriously Richard!? Did we thrive on the pill when the pill did not exist? Are we the only creatures roaming this planet? Other than domesticated animals or hormonally surging farm animals, who else has had years pilfered by a pill?…we have…
- “Taking too many supplements too quickly can have undesirable side effects…”
RELATED DISEASES & DISORDERS
“…celiac disease is considered the most under diagnosed common disease today, affecting as many as 1 out of every 130 people in the United States.”
- 2003 Study of 4000 people with no genetic risk factors nor symptoms of celiac disease—1 out of every 133
- Greater incidence with familial links.
- 1 in 56 with IBS have celiac disease too.
“Many people have a genetic susceptibility to celiac disease, but the disease lies dormant until a triggering event occurs…”
It is the gluten or gluten-like protein found in these ‘foods’ that triggers a reaction and inflames the villi within the small intestine. Nutrients are poorly absorbed in a snowball like effect as the body undergoes a continual dietary attack. For treatment, Richard recommends avoidance—”cannot cheat”— so that the small intestine can heal. Full recovery can extend from 3-6 months or, a rarity, to as long as 18-24 months.
The symptoms of IBS mimic those of celiac disease, but I do not feel that is extraordinary. An attack on the digestive tract will stimulate the body to throw up its arms and proceed hastily with battle. The consequences will be similar, as will the rewards of avoidance. “Irritable bowel syndrome is an exasperating condition, but not a medically dangerous one.” I am not sure how Richard was trying to approach his audience with this one. If in comparing it to a traumatic bodily manifestation such as a cerebral aneurysm, yes, IBS does not warrant similar medical treatment.
As for severity though, IBS hidden within the duration of a life should not require a speculative safety net. It is not safe to harbor IBS for one day let alone a lifetime.
INGREDIENTS THAT MAY ORIGINATE FROM GLUTEN
- Unidentified starch
- Modified food starch
- Hydrolyzed vegetable/plant protein
- Texturized vegetable protein
- Malt/natural flavorings
- Brown rice syrup
- Soy sauce
- Caramel flavor
- Alcohol based extracts
- Distilled vinegar
- Salad dressings
- Other condiments
- Drug binders
- Postage stamp glue
LINK TO DERMATITIS HERPETIFORMIS
- Blistering itchy patches of skin on pressure points (elbows, knees, etc…).
“Oncologists believe that most people have dormant genes that can produce cancer cells, and that these genes do not cause problems until they’re activated by an outside agent, such as an infection, tobacco, pollutants, or some sort of irritant to the body.”
Diverticula are a weakening of the smooth wall that causes small pockets to form within the colon.
- “By age forty-five, about 40 percent of Americans have diverticula and this percentage increases with age.”
I will refer back to this quote when I wrap up IBS in my conclusion.
1 in 10 Americans, regularly or daily…and the factors:
- Immediate family member with GERD
- Being pregnant
- Peptic ulcer
- Pepsin breaks down protein—NSAIDs, smoking, alcohol, & H. pylori
- Delayed stomach emptying
- Connective tissue disorders
- Many medications
“By age forty-five, about 40 percent of Americans have diverticula and this percentage increases with age.” Coupled with the scandalous under diagnosing of digestive problems, especially celiac disease, these statistical numbers do not detract from one another, they complement one another. It is no complement to be buried by the disease process and then by some shoveled dirt upon your dimensionally appropriated box at an age when you
could should still be thriving.
Are we unconvinced by these statistics because ’40%’ seems cute, little, and cheek-pinch worthy? Are we unconvinced because we are one hidden and protected amongst a population of millions, and billions globally? As these statistical anomalies restructure themselves in time into average lifespans, are we unconvinced because we now find it equally comforting to be identified as part of the statistical many…millions…billions?
Do you have IBS or any digestive problems?
What treatments have you tried? Did they actually treat the problem effectively?
What lifestyle changes have you incorporated into your treatment regiment?