Glutathione is made of amino acid precursors which are absorbed in the gut and rely on healthy stomach production of hydrochloric acid or HCL. When there is poor digestion you will begin to suffer from malabsorption of vital minerals that your body needs as acid buffer for the acid produced by normal bodily functions which result is acid from chemical reactions that are happening to keep your body functioning and healthy. When we run acid we will begin to rob vitamins out of our bones and tissues making them weak. We also will begin to produce ammonia thick is very toxic. Ammonia will be made by the body to buffer against acid as it is very alkaline. This ammonia is seriously toxic to your cells especially the brain. Glutathione is the primary way your body neutralizes ammonia and carries it out of the body. Poor digestion will result is low Glutathione production and poor digestion will also increase the need for more Glutathione in 2 major ways. First the ammonia and second the toxaemias that result from poor gut flora. This is why this secret is so important. Lets dive deeper into digestion then.
In 1933, Dr. Anthony Bassler wrote after a 25 year study of over 5,000 cases, “Every physician should realise that the intestinal toxaemias are the most important primary and contributing causes of many disorders and diseases of the human body”
The Digestive System
The Western Diet has the major food groups, but is lacking in vitality and freshness, low in fibre and too high in refined starches, the wrong fats and oils, and the wrong proteins. Industrial food production has led to low levels of vitamins and minerals and high amounts of preservatives, hormones and other additives.
If there are insufficient micronutrients, digestion, detoxification and all the normal healthy body processes can be disabled. Frank deficiency is surprisingly common in the West. Relative deficiency will lead to poor functioning. For instance, digestive enzyme production is reduced if B vitamins are deficient.
Rancid or fried food gives oxidising free radicals. High fat diets from animal fats and some processed oils and margarines have been found to increase the inflammation in colon diseases. Excessive sugar, salt, protein, or highly processed food may overwhelm the digestive process, leaving part-digested food in the intestines. Oestrogens fed to cattle to increase their weight cause many problems, including yeast overgrowth in the intestines. A high protein diet can result in highly toxic products including ammonia, phenols and hydrogen sulphide.
Consistently over-prescribed and wrongly prescribed in the last few decades, commonly used antibiotics do not work any more on resistant strains of bacteria. 13,300 patients died in US hospitals from drug-resistant infection in one year according to Time Magazine (March 28 1994). Half the annual production of antibiotics is fed to cattle, poultry and pigs as a prophylactic and to increase bulk. Resistant bacteria developed in the animals are a source of dangerous infection to humans. Antibiotics devastate the intestinal mucosa – no beneficial flora or protective mucus covering is left. Delicate mucosal cells are exposed to the intestinal contents, and parasites unaffected by antibiotics are free to invade.
Chronic stress not only reduces digestive enzymes and increases gut alkalinity, it also slows down protein replacement, leading to ulcers and leaky gut. Stress reduces mucus secretions and cuts down the immune system activity, leading to more inflammation, and attacks on the mucosa. Stress increases pathogenic organisms in the gut. The Cytochrome P450 system is used to make stress hormones and to detoxify poisons in the liver. So stress may reduce exactly the same nutritional factors as are needed for detoxification.
NSAIDs have been shown to increase inflammation, bleeding and protein loss in the digestive tract, increasing gut permeability. Steroid drugs have similar effects to continual stress. Barbiturates may reduce the activity of the whole digestive system. Many medical drugs have moderate or severe effects on the digestive system, quite apart from their other toxic effects.
Stomach acid enables protein-digesting enzymes to work, it enables us to take in minerals from food and is a barrier to micro-organisms. Poor digestion of protein leads to part-digested food in the gut. Pathogenic organisms are attracted, and can produce highly toxic putrefaction. Oversized molecules may also be absorbed and provoke immune system reactions, or food allergy.
Allergy and Food Intolerance
When allergy is strong and immediate, it is IgE which sets up unmistakable, immediate widespread reactions. Most people recognise these reactions at an early age. IgE has a long ‘memory’. Gluten is a common allergen, directly related to inflammations of the intestinal tract. Lactose intolerance sets up allergic reactions associated with inflammatory bowel diseases.
More subtle allergy, called ‘food intolerance’, is mediated by IgG and is more difficult to detect, since the reaction may be delayed for hours, and is cumulative – the more you eat, the more you react – and its memory may be a few months. The immune B-cells are forced to produce large amounts of IgG, and immunity is compromised. Frequent ear infections in children, and immune reactions like fevers and inflammations are common. Inflammation damages the gut wall, and sends a message to the stomach to stop producing acid and enzymes.
Putrefaction, or decomposition of proteins by anaerobic microbes leads to toxicity and inflammation. Faeces are smelly with abnormal colours or consistency, and with constipation or diarrhoea. Even with one or more bowel movements a day there may be constipation when sticky faeces adhere to the walls of the intestine. Inflammation in the appendix area can result in total inhibition of peristalsis. Putrefaction produces highly toxic chemicals causing a complex of symptoms and disease.
Candida and other Parasites
Candida albicans can change its form from a relatively benign yeast into fungal forms with filaments that penetrate and irritate the membranes, giving thrush, allergies, inflammation and a host of disabling symptoms. It has recently been reported to live in the tissues of duodenal ulcers. Candida produces alcohol and acetaldehyde which can displace B vitamins and produce shakiness, depression, exhaustion, and deterioration of all the cells of the body.
There are many more parasites and pathogens, like the amoeba Entamoeba histolytica, protozoan Giardia lamblia, nematodes, worms and others that find a home in the intestines. They attack cells directly and their waste products are also highly toxic. Giardia can produce serious ME -like symptoms. It reduces the immune complex Immunoglobulin A (IgA) which is the body’s first line of defence. The protozoan Endolimax nana is associated with reactive arthritis. It is ingested as a cyst and resides in the colon.
Putrefactive bacteria and dangerous micro-organisms may take control because of any combination of factors – antibiotics, stress, drugs, poor diet, poor digestion and so on. The result is a completely toxic environment, dysbiosis. It has been observed that in older people, beneficial bifidobacteria decrease, and toxic clostridia, enterobacteria and enterococci increase. This change goes along with a decrease in stomach acid.
Leaky gut (intestinal permeability)
The healthy mucosa acts as a physical barrier to harsh solids, bacteria and toxins. It holds secretory IgA and IgM, lysozyme enzyme that can lyse and destroy gram negative bacteria, and lactoferrin, an iron binding protein which deprives iron-thirsty organisms of iron. But it is damaged by the attack of corrosive toxins and oxidising chemicals. Fungal filaments and other parasites dislodge the cells and expose the underlying blood and lymph vessels. Sticky, putrefying intestinal contents can physically pull off protective mucus and many of the cells are exposed and die. The immune system initiates an inflammatory cascade, opening up the blood vessels and bringing more immune cells to the fight. Blood and lymph are exposed to the contents of the intestine, and toxins leak into the body.
Leaky gut syndrome is associated with coeliac disease, Crohn’s disease, colitis and irritable bowel syndrome. Synott’s work in the 1930s showed that in insane patients at the New Jersey Sate Hospital there were large areas of destruction of intestinal mucosa, plus atrophy of the intestinal smooth muscle. This was significantly more than in the general population. Leaky gut opens the door to all kinds of disease.
Intoxication and the low functioning liver
Toxins leaking through the gut are carried to the liver, where Glutathione system oxidises and breaks down toxins and neutralise the corrosive effect of oxidation. Liver enzymes are dependent on many nutrients and may simply be unable to deal with a large influx of poisons from the gut. Toxins from putrefaction can be deadly. For example:
An increased concentration of ammonia causes severe neurological symptoms resembling “hepatic coma, such as mental disturbances, characteristic tremor, and altered EEG pattern. . . (Ammonia) may even be involved with the malignant transformation of cells. . .” Phenol (carbolic acid) is both “a local corrosive and systemic poison” which can cause the death of the gastrointestinal mucosa, and cells of the liver and kidney. Hydrogen sulphide (bad egg smell) is “as toxic as cyanide and interferes with the Glutathione system” as reported in the Lancet.
Toxins in the blood are normally eliminated though kidneys, colon, bile duct, lungs, mucus membranes and sweat glands, but may be overwhelmed. The skin may develop rashes, eczema or psoriasis, boils or acne. The lungs and all mucous membranes will be choked with copious, thick or infected mucus. Urine may smell strongly and bladder infections are likely. Diarrhoea may increase to a dangerous degree. The body will look off-colour, feel feverish, with aches and pains, and have all the symptoms of disease, without being able to point to a single causative factor. When elimination is really overwhelmed it shuts down, and the body dumps the toxicity in the weaker, less aware parts.
Disease results from the enormous variety of toxins and incompletely metabolised biochemicals saturating the tissues. When the body is toxic and stops eliminating, it is in serious trouble. The nervous system is very vulnerable. Eleven independent laboratories found at least five times more skatole from putrefaction in the urine of schizophrenics than in normal subjects. The stressed immune system may go haywire producing autoimmune diseases. The weakest organs and systems fail and ME or MS and the whole host of degenerative diseases develop. In cancer, a diseased organ or tissue sealed off in a tumour could be a last-ditch way of the body trying to cope with the effects of toxicity. There are hundreds of diseases that have been directly related to low Glutathione levels.
Reversing the Toxic Spiral
All water is not the same. The best reverse osmosis filters take out a majority of the pollutants as does distilling. Boiled or distilled water has a low surface tension, which carries toxins to be eliminated. A high mineral content is not useful as the surface tension is high.
Clearing Nutrients and Herbs for kidneys, lungs and skin
The first and most important supplement is Glutathione. Also Vitamin C is a detoxifier and transporter. Niacin causes a beneficial flushing of blood. Dandelion is a tonic and stimulant for the kidneys, and heals ulceration and inflammations in the urinary system. Ginger stimulates blood circulation and sweating, is anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. Burdock root increases urination and disperses congestion in the lungs. Sarsaparilla is diuretic, eliminates uric acid and chlorides, and increases sweating.
Detoxification and Healing the Liver
Milk Thistle contains some of the most potent liver-protecting substances known, some more strongly antioxidant than vitamin E. Some are anti-inflammatory and able to block the formation of leukotrienes which can damage the liver. Some stimulate protein synthesis, making new liver cells. Milk thistle protects against liver damage caused by carbon tetrachloride, and even the deathcap mushroom. In humans, studies have shown very positive effects on liver diseases including chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis.
Burdock root, a primary liver cleanser, also used for boils, septic states, fever and inflammations. Dandelion rootstimulates liver repair and renewal, increases bile and is laxative. Psoriasis sufferers have high levels of circulating endotoxins. When given endotoxin-binding saponins from Sarsaparilla, 62% were improved and 18% were completely cleared of psoriasis. Yellow dock increases bile, reduces inflammation and is a mucus, blood & liver cleanser, clearing liver congestion.
Diet is known to affect the efficiency of liver enzymes.
Nutrients for Cytochrome P450
Vitamin A, B2, B3, B6, B12, Folate
Branched-chain amino acids
Nutrients for Conjugation
Glutathione, L-cysteine, N-acetyl cysteine
C with bioflavonoids, fruit, berries
good protein digestion
Probiotic formulae with fructo- oligosaccharides
multivitamin, B Complex
good protein digestion
The best antioxidant formulations should contain:
Vitamin A, Beta Carotene, C, E, B2
Selenium, Zinc, Copper, Manganese,
Glutathione, L-cysteine, N-acetyl cysteine
Anthocyanidins, Pycnogenol, Sylimarin (Milk Thistle)
Curcumins (turmeric) and/or Thiols (Garlic)
Curcumins and Boswellia are also excellent anti-inflammatories
COLON CLEANSING AND HEALING LEAKY GUT
Linseed, or flax, a bulking fibre, contains antispasmodic glycosides, preventing muscle spasms. It is high in essential fatty acids, and uniquely high in linolenic acid (omega 3), the biochemical precursor to the body’s anti-inflammatory prostaglandins. So it calms the irritation of IBS, colitis and leaky gut. The omega oils are also essential for all cell membranes, particularly the mucosa.
Psyllium Husks produce a soft, cooling, lubricating, mucus-clearing gel which absorbs poisons and reduces inflammation. They have a long history of use in dysentery, diarrhoea and constipation, increasing the bacterial mass and normalising intestinal flow.
Slippery Elm protects the intestinal walls from acids and toxins and is used in treatment of ulcers and inflammation, diarrhoea and constipation.
Fennel seed, an excellent infant ‘gripe water’, is calming and warming, relieving cramps, colic and flatulence. The Chinese have used it treat intestinal obstruction. It contains anethole oil, an antiseptic and local anti-inflammatory.
Fenugreek seed makes a soothing, bulky, warming mucilage good for inflamed conditions of the stomach and intestines. It has been used for wounds, boils, sores, fistulas and tumours. It balances appetite, improves assimilation, and corrects blood sugar problems.
L-Glutamine is needed to support the enormous turnover of intestinal cells. Important for healing ulceration, it is now being used from 5 to 40 grams daily to prevent and stimulate healing of leaky gut.
Aloe Vera is an important healer of all skins, but especially the gut mucosa. It is detoxifying, encourages beneficial bacteria, is anti-viral and immune enhancing.
Uncaria tomentosa, Cat’s Claw, is anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-mutagen and a cleanser of the digestive system. It has been used for IBS, Crohn’s disease, diverticulitis, ulcers and many more imbalances.
Glucosamine is needed to make glycoproteins, which form a protective transport medium of a mucous coat in the gut wall. It promotes the growth of Bifidobacteria but blocks the progress of Candida in the mucosa.
Butyric Acid is a short chain fatty acid produced in the intestine by bacteria from fibre. It is needed for the regrowth of the cells of the gut wall and the normal functioning of the mucosa. It has been used as a supplement, but correcting the fibre and bacterial balance would be a more permanent solution.
Probiotics and Ecobiotics
Probiotic, means ‘pro-life’, compared with the antibiotic approach of killing indiscriminately. Ecobiotics means treating the intestinal flora as an ecosystem that needs to be understood and worked with as a complex living whole. Even in healthy people there are hundreds of different species of bacteria, including pathogenic ones, plus yeasts, protozoa and fungi. It is a complex ecology, like a rainforest teeming with life.
The beneficial bacteria manufacture B vitamins – B2, B3, B6, B12, biotin, folic acid and vitamin K, providing some for the body. They make lactase for digesting milk sugar, and can extract calcium from milk. Some help with the digestion of proteins, sugars and even cellulose, producing significant amounts of amino acids, lipids and other basic food molecules. As one probiotic researcher commented “The metabolic activity of the gut bacteria is potentially equal to that of the liver”.
Probiotic bacteria promote acid conditions in the intestines, deterring putrefactive bacteria. They also produce specific agents like hydrogen peroxide, which inhibit and kill pathogenic bacteria, and natural ‘antibiotics’ with names like acidophilin, acidolin, lactobacillin and bifidin. Acidophilin was found to be strongly active against many organisms, but not toxic to Lactobacilli or to human cells. Bifidobacteria normally found in the colon, successfully attack virulent Shigella organisms which can penetrate and damage the intestinal wall causing dysentery. Many diseases, including autoimmune diseases, like ankylosing spodylitis and rheumatoid arthritis, can be improved by probiotics.
Following antibiotics, it is important to take not only a single ‘superstrain’, but the whole range of beneficial bacteria by eating yoghurt and lactic fermented vegetables. The transient species can be very important in maintaining ecobiotic health.
Lactobacillus salivarius is perhaps the most exciting friendly bacterium, since it digests protein, clearing up potential allergens, intestinal toxicity and inhibiting pathogens. Endotoxins, released from the cell walls of certain pathogenic bacteria are thought to play a major role in gout, arthritis and psoriasis. Salivarius will digest and remove endotoxins from the gut.
Fructo-oligosaccharides are chains of sugar-type molecules found in fruit, vegetables and grains. They are resistant to human digestive enzymes, but are food for Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria. Alone, they can increase the beneficial flora in the intestine.
Clearing Candida, Fungi and Other Parasites
Grapefruit Seed Extract deals effectively with all kinds of infection and putrefaction. Dr. Leo Galland, the expert on natural treatment of intestinal diseases, said, “What’s in there that makes it work really isn’t known. Whatever it does, it does it without debilitating side effects (and) has the advantage of being very safe”. Of 297 cases of Candidiasis he treated with grapefruit seed extract, only two achieved less than excellent results. Studies have shown it to be effective against many virulent disease-causing bacteria, many fungi, most protozoa, and a number of viruses, including Herpes simplex, measles and an influenza virus. Amazingly, there is little activity against the beneficial inhabitants of the colon, and none against Bifidobacteria.
Atopic eczema patients, all with intermittent diarrhoea, constipation, flatulence, bloating and abdominal discomfort were treated with dilute grapefruit seed extract. A similar pattern of reduced pathogenic bacteria, yeasts and fungi was achieved as in a parallel group of patients treated with antibiotics and anti-fungal medicines, except that there were no side effects, and no loss of beneficial bacteria with the grapefruit seed extract.
Artemisia traditionally used in malaria, lymphocytic meningitis, hepatitis, and nephritis, is strongly anti-fungal, effective against Giardia lamblia, and putrefactive bacteria.
Pulsatilla Chinensis is effective against Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas, Giardia, Entamoeba, Trichomonas, several fungal infections and Candida. In China it is used against amoebic dysentery, both acute and chronic.
Barberry’s main active ingredient, berberine is used in even severe cases of dysentery, including infection by Cholera, Entamoeba, Giardia, Shigella, Salmonella, Candida and Klebsiella. It has been used in India and China for 3000 years and confirmed in recent experiments. It stimulates the immune system by increasing blood supply to the spleen and activating macrophages to consume parasites.
Prunus Mume is antibiotic and anti-fungal, and has been used in treating infections that follow prolonged antibiotic therapy. It is a traditional remedy for expelling roundworm, hookworm and other parasites.
Ginger has a reported 70% cure rate of bacillary dysentery within seven days. It is anti-inflammatory and antiseptic.
Zanthoxylum eliminates roundworm and pinworm, relieves abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhoea.
Rhizoma Coptidis, from the Chinese tradition, contains berberine. It also reduces inflammation and is used in treatment of inflamed colon, dysentery and anal fissures.
Calcium Magnesium Caprylate is known to be an efficient way of killing fungal Candida, while not inhibiting bacteria.
Pau D’Arco is a South America tree bark, long used to fight infections and strengthen immunity. It has a strong anti-fungal and anti-Candida effect.
Thyme, Rosemary and Lemon Balm (Melissa officinale) are three common herbs which have proven Candida-killing ingredients and a history of use in soothing and disinfecting the digestive system.
Garlic is highly antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti parasite, garlic encourages the growth of Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacteria.
Vitamin C supports the immune system and is active against viruses and bacteria. Acting along with bioflavonoids and anthocyanidins, it increases the strength of the collagen connective tissue of the gut lining.
Clearing Allergy and Fasting
The first objective in clearing allergy is to identify the allergens in food. The immediate and strong IgE reactions are easily spotted and tested, but the delayed reactions of IgG to food in the gut or in blood are notoriously difficult, and require an ELISA test of many foods across all four IgGs. The laboratory must prove that it is better than 95% reliable, or reproducible, and any practitioner should not base an allergy programme on less reliable data. The results of simply cutting out the indicated foods and instituting a rotation diet are usually dramatic and promote deep reversals of symptoms and disease states. Healing leaky gut and toxicity is so much easier when the pressure is off the immune system.
Fasting rests the digestive processes, and has been the central therapeutic method in Naturopathy. Fasting will change the body’s biochemistry and encourage more detoxification. The best kind of fast for detoxification is one which retains fibre, vitamins and minerals and cuts out concentrated fats and oils, proteins, starches and sugars, the salt and all flavourings and sauces. A raw or steamed vegetable diet is ideal, with fruit, and as much water or herb tea as required. The distress of healing crises can be avoided by understanding the gradual and thorough approach to healing.
Concentrated protein and starch combining is not recommended for a cleansing diet and neither is concentrated protein with fruit. Vegetable protein is generally not concentrated and may be already naturally combined with proteins, oils, sugars and fibre. For those who are less sensitive, layering the meal works – eating protein first and then starch.
Digestion takes place through the action of enzymes from saliva, stomach, pancreas and small intestine secretions. The breakdown process produces smaller molecules, like amino acids, fatty acids and sugars, which are absorbed mainly through the gut wall into blood and lymph for delivery to all the cells of the body. Improvement in digestion comes from better food, a calm and well-chewed meal. But a direct approach is to add a supplemental digestive aid containing digestive enzymes and plant substances known to stimulate and support the body’s own production of enzymes:
Betaine HCI is a source of stomach acid needed for digestion of protein and absorption of minerals.
Protease is a group of enzymes for digestion of protein into peptides, ready for splitting into amino acids.
Lactase is the enzyme for digestion of milk sugar, lactose.
Lipase helps in the breakdown of fats.
Amylase helps in the breakdown of starches and sugars.
Cellulase helps in the breakdown of cellulose fibre.
Papain is a natural extract of the papaya fruit which digests proteins and starches. It needs less acid than our own stomach enzymes and is soothing to the stomach.
Bromelain from pineapple has been used successfully to reduce the effects of food allergy and intolerance.
American Ginseng tones the stomach, pancreas and intestine. It stimulates enzyme production and normalises appetite.
Fenugreek supports the pancreas, controls appetite and balances the blood sugar cycle.
Gentian root is an anti-inflammatory and bitter digestive stimulant for bile, improving the digestion of fats and oils.
There is not one drug that the body is deficient of. Imagine an aspirin deficiency or an antibiotic deficiency. Allopathic drugs are foreign to human biochemistry. There are ways to rebalance using herbs, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and food.
Stress must be reduced by lifestyle changes. A daily formula for stress should include raising vitamin C by several grams, a high B Complex with extra B5, extra Magnesium, Zinc and Calcium. ‘Adaptogenic’ herbs such as Ginseng and Astragalus increase endurance and vitality and reduce the negative effects of stress.
Optimum Nutrition – a few reminders
– Fresh vegetables and fruit for vitality, nutrients and fibre.
– Avoid processed food.
– Concentrated protein can make powerful toxins.
– Grains and pulses are good sources of low concentration protein.
– Starchy are a far better energy source than sugary food. (Avoid added sugar.)
– Avoid fried food or cooking with lard, polyunsaturated oil or margarine.
– Olive oil is stable and is best for cooking.
– Alcohol, coffee and tea are best avoided during cleansing.
– Cow’s milk contains growth promoters, hormones, antibiotics and other toxins.
– Water, fruit and vegetable juices, herb teas and grain coffees are the best drinks during cleansing.
– A complete range of micronutrients is needed to complete the healthy cycle.
The result of reversing the toxic spiral is to move towards health. Health is not simply the absence of disease, it is a process with stages and levels. When a whole territory of disease and health is mapped, the potential for healing is enormously increased.
If Healing is Possible Consider in to be Within Your Reach,
John Lieurance, DC, ND
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