low stomach acid

Crohn’s Disease

Digestive health issues are a huge epidemic in our society and one of the of most alarming digestive diseases is Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease is growing at a fast rate and unfortunately, modern medicine does not and will not have the answer or cure. Why are many people suffering from Crohn’s disease?

Crohn’s disease is classified as an Irritable Bowel Disease and it is a chronic inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract. Crohn’s disease is also classified as an autoimmune disorder where the body attacks itself. It mainly occurs in the last part of the small intestine, called the ileum and the beginning of the large colon. However, Crohn’s disease can occur anywhere along the entire gastrointestinal tract, from the mouth to the anus and it can affect the entire thickness of the bowel wall. 

Some of the most common symptoms of Crohn’s disease include the following: persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, an urgent need to move bowels, abdominal cramps and pain, a sensation of incomplete evacuation and constipation. Other symptoms can include fever, loss of appetite, weight loss, fatigue, night sweats and a loss of normal menstrual cycles. 

The main cause of Crohn’s disease is a poor diet made possible from our modern society with the large processed food companies, fast food restaurants, agricultural chemical products in the form of pesticides and the ever increasing genetical modified organisms (GMOs) in the food supply. All of these modern applications to our food supply wreck havoc on our entire digestive and immune systems by greatly weakening the body’s ability to generate proper levels of stomach acid (hydrochloric acid), the body’s ability to absorb nutrients within the small intestine and the body’s ability to keep the proper balance of bacteria, mainly in the large intestine, but throughout the entire body. When these functions of the body are weakened or destroyed, disease sets in and one of these diseases is Crohn’s disease. Simply put, Crohn’s disease is the inability of the digestive system to digest, absorb and assimilate the nutrients necessary for a healthy body and mind. This sets the stage for the body to start attacking itself because the body sees the undigested food in the blood steam as a foreign invader. Couple the undigested food with the chemicals from food and body care products and the stage for general war against the body is set. 

The best way to mitigate or cure Crohn’s disease is a complete lifestyle change, beginning with healthy food. The most healing diet includes the following foods: grass fed beef, pastured chicken, wild fish, pastured eggs, oysters, avocados, coconut oil, olive oil, cod liver oil, bone broth from pastured animals, raw pastured butter, raw cow or goat milk, raw cow or goat yogurt and kefir, homemade vegetable juice, steamed vegetables, raw apple cider vinegar, raw honey and perhaps, some fruit here and there. All of these foods need to be hormone free and organic. Each person with Crohn’s disease will be at a different stage in their dealing with this disease and the above listed foods will vary from person to person. Some folks will be able to eat some fruit and cooked vegetables and some will not. Some folks will be able to digest raw milk and some will not. Some folks will have to eat a completely raw primal diet to ensure the best path to healing. Grains, beans, pasteurized dairy, nuts, seeds, added sweeteners, starches and raw vegetables need to be avoided to ensure the best healing of the digestive system. Avoid all processed foods, fast foods, GMO foods and pesticide laden foods. 

Certain supplements will be helpful and these supplements will vary from person to person. These supplements include the following: HCL with pepsin capsules, digestive bitters, digestive enzymes, probiotics, raw cod liver oil, whole foods based vitamin C, whole foods based zinc, other whole foods based vitamins and minerals, adaptogenic herbs, terramin clay and other supplements. 

Besides a radical change in diet, other lifestyle changes include the following: using very little body care products and these body care products need to be organic, getting outside as much as possible and soaking up the sunlight, following circadian rhythm, doing some Earthing (putting your bare feet on the Earth), engaging in moving your body, deep breathing, emotional expression and healing, reducing stress levels, spending time with loved ones, and standing up for yourself. Of course, there are other healthy lifestyle changes to incorporate into your life and it will vary from person to person.

Crohn’s disease is a challenging and sometimes, a major life altering disease. If we are going to see any reduction in Crohn’s disease with the hopes of curing it, we start with what we eat and we eat foods that have healing energy and properties; and from there, we start to radical change the way we live on every level of life: physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. 

Digestive Bitters

One of the most important health protocols you can do for yourself is to consume digestive bitters on a regular basis.  You may be wondering, what the heck are digestive bitters? Digestive bitters are herbs that are consumed as a tea or as a liquid tincture before eating a meal. These herbs are very bitter. Their bitterness when tasted, stimulates the body to get ready for the coming meal. When a bitter substance is recognized by bitter receptors on the tongue, a chain of neural and endocrine events begins, labeled as the “bitter reflex.” Mediated by the release of the gastric hormone gastrin, this reflex results in an overall stimulation of digestive function, which over time strengthens the structure and function of all digestive organs (liver, stomach, gallbladder, pancreas, etc.). These digestive bitters stimulate the gastric juices or as I like to say, the gastric fire, to be prepared to break down the impending meal. The main gastric juice involved in this process is hydrochloric acid which is released by the parietal cells in the stomach, which is regulated by gastrin, a hormone, which is secreted by the G cells.

The job of the stomach is to break down the food that is consumed, mainly the protein, into a chyme ball or acidic soup so that the protein and to a certain extent, the fat and carbohydrates, will be able to be absorbed, assimilated and utilized by the small intestine and large intestine through a complex and elaborate system that involves the pancreas, liver and gallbladder and many enzymes and trillions of bacteria.

If stomach acid (hydrochloric acid) is not strong enough then all the other mechanisms and duties performed by the pancreas, liver, small intestine, etc., will be diminished and many problems, minor and major, can arise, with the main problem being malnourishment.

Millions of people suffer from low stomach acid and the results are: indigestion, constipation, heart burn, gas, burping, acid reflux and a host of other problems. Besides a big change if diet, digestive bitters will be a huge help. The best way to take digestive bitters is in the tincture form. Take 40-60 drops of the tincture in a little glass of water or hold a little bit of water in your mouth and squirt the drops into your mouth and swallow. Do this 10-15 minutes before the meal and do this before every meal.

The following is a list of some of the various digestive bitters: Angelica, Dandelion, Goldenseal, Horehound, Wormwood, Peppermint, Orange Peel, Yellow Dock, Fennel, Ginger, Cardamom and Gentian.

Digestive bitters were a big part of many cultures and are still a big part in cultures around the world. It’s time to bring this health remedy back to our culture.

My favorite digestive bitters are from the following herbal companies: Gaia Herbs, Herb Pharm, and Urban Moonshine.

Low Stomach Acid

Do you suffer from gas (flatulence), bloating, heart burn, acid reflux, or that rock in the stomach feeling? Your stomach is not producing enough acid.One of the most under-diagnosed and misdiagnosed health conditions is low stomach acid, medically referred to as hypochlorhydria.  Low stomach acid can cause a host of health problems such as: malnutrition, bacteria infections, auto-immune disease, skin rashes, arthritis, mild depression and anxiety and overall digestive problems. Low stomach acid is caused, mainly, from unhealthy eating and stress. The over prescribed medical protocol of using antacids is not the answer. In fact, antacids make the matter worse. More information in the video.