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Apr 252011
 

Maybe you’re experiencing some gut dysbiosis symptoms.  Maybe you feel fine but are interested in a holistic guide to digestive wellness.  Either way,  there are many steps one can take to build a healthy foundation.  After all,  a healthy digestive system is the foundation for all healing.

Gut Dysbiosis

In case you haven’t noticed yet,  I use the term “gut dysbiosis” and “intestinal dysbiosis” to describe this condition,  both are correct.  Terminology aside,  the important thing is to understand what dysbiosis is,  what causes it,  and what we can do about it.  In some other posts I’ve discussed definitions,  causes,  diet,  and many other things as well.  But here I will focus a bit more on herbs and supplements that can naturally help alleviate this condition.

Probiotics

If you’re tired of hearing me talk about probiotics,  then I apologize,  but these little miracle bugs can’t be overlooked.  More and more science is coming out every day on the many benefits of probiotics.

In short,  for many reasons,  including poor diet and antibiotic use,  we lose many of these healthful organisms.  They perform many different functions,  including aiding in nutrient assimilation,  regulating immune function,  and simply taking up space so that harmful organisms can’t get a hold.  But I can’t wait to see what they find out next.

In my opinion,  everybody should take a daily probiotic supplement.  Even if you don’t have gut dysbiosis,  it’s a good thing to add more of these beneficial bugs.  you should also continue to eat live culture dairy products such as yogurt.

It is best to use a high quality probiotic supplement with many different strains of live bugs.  Different strains are currently being researched for different conditions.  But we don’t have to wait for all of the final results,  we can enjoy them now.

High quality probiotic supplements are also shielded from stomach acid to release in the intestinal tract.  This is important because probiotics from food sources are almost completely killed off by stomach acid.  I generally recommend that people follow manufactures’ instructions.  But if you have a severe case of gut dysbiosis,  it’s generally ok to take more than the listed amount.

Soluble Fiber

Soluble fiber does more than just promote regularity and lower cholesterol.  It is a food source for the probiotics to multiply naturally.  Glucomannan is one that has been gaining in popularity lately and is better tolerated than psyllium.  Soluble fiber also has the benefit of slowing blood sugar spikes and contributing to a sense of fullness.

Other Herbs

The reason I gave probiotics and soluble fiber their own categories is that they are essential for digestive health as a whole.  The term “gut dysbiosis” refers to an imbalance.  This imbalance could be bacterial or fungal.  The herbs mentioned below do have antibacterial properties,  but their primary use is to suppress candida overgrowth.

  • Oil of Oregano-This is not the oregano from your kitchen spice rack.  Please be aware the essential oils of this herb are extremely aromatic.
  • Olive Leaf Extract-We all know that olives are healthy,  but the anti-fungal nature of the olive leaf is amazing.
  • Garlic-Garlic has been used medicinally for centuries.  It is anti-yeast,  lowers cholesterol,  and is also very good for the heart.
  • Caprylic Acid-This essential fatty acid targets yeast while leaving lactobacillus unharmed.  It is available at many health food stores.
  • Raw,  Unpasteurized,  Unfiltered,  Apple Cider Vinegar (With Mother)-Apple cider vinegar has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for heartburn.  Make sure to get the kind with the “mother” included.  This is the source for the beneficial bacteria.  It is available at most health food stores.

You may be wondering which of these different supplements you should take.  The probiotics and soluble fiber are 2 that should be taken daily.  The rest can be taken as part of an herb rotation program.  Pick any 2,  and take for a period of time.  This could range from 1 to 6 months.  After that period,  choose 2 more and repeat.  You may find one that works for you particularly well.

The important thing is to take action,  nobody can do it for you.  If you’re in bad shape,  it is possible to get well.  Maybe you have mild symptoms and you just want to feel better.  But the best approach is prevention.