This was a conversation on the gut bacteria vs gut barrier and some tips to restore and maintain a healthy gut.
Here's the transcript for your convienence, with minor adjustments, the video was edited for more effective flow:
Dale Intro: Today we’re here with Collin Ruiz to learn about the gut, restoring and maintaining a healthy gut.
Me, Thank you, I'm very passionate about helping people overcome health issues with food! I earned a Masters in Science degree in human nutrition and I'm here today to talk about your gut.
Did you know that problems in our gut or the GI tract can cause more than just stomach pain, gas, bloating or diarrhea? Unhealthy gut can be the root cause of many chronic health problems, obesity, skin issues – like eczema, chronic fatigue, autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and Hashimotos – a disease of the thyroid gland, fibromyalgia, anxiety, and depression
Dale - Wow, A healthy gut really does promote vibrate physical AND mental wellbeing!
I can see why my gut health is very important to my wellbeing in general so it’s not just about getting enough protein and vegetables in my diet?. When you are talking about keeping my gut healthy, are you talking about my stomach or intestines?
Me – Good question;
A description of the gut, just another word for the gastrointestinal tract, is the long tube that starts at the mouth and ends at the anus. The mouth, the stomach, small intestine and large intestine are all components of the gut.
There are two closely related variables that determine our gut health: “gut flora”, and the gut barrier. Let’s discuss each of these in turn.
Dale – my “gut flora” are the "healthy bacteria?
Me – What is so amazing is that the human gut contains 10 times more bacteria than all the human cells in the entire body, with over 400 known diverse bacterial species. and that’s the way our bodies like it!
Unfortunately there are several features of our modern lifestyle that directly contribute to unhealthy gut flora:
Dale – let me guess…. Sugar?
Me – Well yes foods that are high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and processed foods do harm the gut flora.
The thing is that there are a lot of non-food items also, things like antibiotics and other medications like Ibufprofen - drugs that are used to control pain and inflammation. Even birth control and chronic stress!
However, antibiotics are particularly harmful to the gut flora.
Dale – Ok, there are a number of things that can harm my gut flora, what about the gut barrier?
Me – Have you ever considered the fact that the contents of the gut are technically outside the body? The gut is a hollow tube that passes through us. Anything that goes in the mouth and isn’t digested will pass right out the other end. This is, in fact, one of the most important functions of the gut barrier: to prevent foreign substances from entering the body.
When the intestinal barrier becomes permeable – substances move into the body, through the barrier, this is where the term “leaky gut syndrome” comes from. If left un-repaired can lead to the more severe health issues like inflammatory bowel disease-IBS, and the other issues I talked about previously as well as migraine headaches, muscle pain and chronic fatigue.
Dale – whoa, and do the same things, like antibiotics that harm my gut flora cause leaky gut?
Me – Basically yes,
Leaky gut and bad gut flora are common because of the modern lifestyle – stress, high amounts of sugar, alcohol, and the gut barrier especially can be harmed by many conventional foods, meat, dairy and GMO foods. If you have a bad gut flora, you probably have leaky gut, and vice versa. And when your gut flora and gut barrier are impaired, you will be inflamed. Period. So what can we do about it?
Dale – Yes, what is my first step in restoring and maintaining a healthy gut?
Me – First, remove foods and factors that damage the gut and then replace with healing foods, avoiding antibiotics and yes too much alcolhol and sugar.
Then to restore the gut flora by taking probiotics in supplement form. Real foods – food that requires very little processing before you eat it. Fermented foods are also great for the gut,
And an easy, tasty Ayurvedic remedy to restore the gut barrier: Well, a couple hours after your last meal of the day, take a tablespoon of organic raisins mixed with a tablespoon of organic raw sesame seeds. Chew the mixture very well before swallowing and do this on a daily basis. That's it.