Some people are skeptical about whether or not their bodies would significantly improve if their guts were healthy. As a physician who has helped an untold number of patients make the journey from disease to health, bestselling author Don Colbert, M.D., can tell you without hesitation that fantastic health benefits are realized when the gut heals itself, in his new book, Dr. Colbert's Healthy Gut Zone .
Colbert helps readers "unlearn" everything medical experts have been teaching about healthy eating for the last three decades and reveals the true path to digestive health through proper diet supported by nutritional supplements. Colbert's book, which was released on Jan. 5, 2021, is available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BAM, Christianbook, Indiebound and Walmart.
"As the foundation to so much, whether good or bad, the gut plays a surprisingly pivotal role in basically every disease known to man," Colbert says. "In short, a healthy gut can usher in health and healing, literally from head to toe."
According to Colbert, one of the most important steps on the journey to gut health is to immediately stop eating, drinking or doing whatever it is that harms your gastrointestinal tract. Only by turning off the things that cause the inflammation and what is referred to as a leaky gut are you able to break your body free from the cycle it is in.
"Remember, the body usually craves the very foods that invite inflammation and disease into the body," Colbert warns. "I recommend that adults should try to avoid alcohol, antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medications, artificial sweeteners, chlorinated water, dairy, excessive meats, gluten, genetically modified foods, high-lectin foods, medications for gastroesophageal reflux disease (known as GERD) and acid-blocking meds, processed foods, saturated fats and sugar.
"This list will probably not cure anything, but it usually does have an immediate or almost-immediate effect on the symptoms that patients have. Adults want to feed only the good bacteria because those are working to make the body healthy. Stopping what feeds the bad bacteria is a perfect first step."
Restoring your gut is not a supplement-heavy endeavor because removing the meds and gut-damaging foods is the key to healing your gut, Colbert writes in Dr. Colbert's Healthy Gut Zone . The gut needs the right nutrients so that it can heal. Some of this will come from a few supplements, but most will be the result of eating foods that have what the gut needs.
"The overall goal is for the gut to regain the proper balance of good bacteria, stamp out the bad microbes, heal the holes in the gut wall and quench inflammation in the gut," Colbert explains. "To achieve this, adults will usually need to include these things in their diets: fiber, polyphenols, prebiotics and probiotics."
Polyphenols are phytonutrients in certain plants that boost the immune system strengthen your entire GI tract and help the brain function properly. Foods and beverages rich in polyphenols include certain olive oils, cocoa powder, dark chocolate, berries, chestnuts, cloves and coffee.
Depending on an individual's symptoms, ailments or disease, Colbert suggests that the following supplements will be of additional and specific value: BPC 157 peptide (a peptide to help restore a leaky gut), colostrum (to repair leaky gut) if not sensitive to dairy, deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) (to repair leaky gut), herbs (slippery elm, marshmallow root and aloe vera to soothe and protect the gut and boost mucus production), hydrolyzed collagen (to help repair leaky gut), L-glutamine (to help repair leaky gut), magnesium (to improve bowel motility), omega-3 (to help quench inflammation and repair the gut), vitamin D3 (to help regulate gut bacteria) and zinc (to improve the barrier function of the gut).
"You will even need to start eating (if you don't eat them already) some foods that are incredibly beneficial to the good bacteria in your gut, such as fermented foods and resistant starches," Colbert writes. "Thankfully, your gut will usually heal itself when you feed it the right foods and remove whatever has been causing problems. The process is amazingly simple."
According to Colbert, the natural foods that are great for a balanced diet include avocadoes, organic oils (such as olive oil), greens, resistant starches and lean, grass-fed, grass-finished meats.
"Your gut wants you to think this way," Colbert advises. "'Feed me foods low in sugars and low in carbs that are also full of fiber, probiotics, prebiotics and polyphenols, and I will be happy. If I am happy, you are healthy. And if you are healthy, you are happy.'" That is the underlying goal when it comes to choosing foods, eating healthfully and nourishing your gut. It should not be too complicated or too difficult. If it is, nobody will do it. Thankfully, the gut is pretty easy to please."
Don Colbert, M.D., was a board-certified family practice doctor for more than 25 years in Orlando, Florida, and most recently in Dallas, Texas. He is also board-certified in antiaging medicine through the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine and has received extensive training in nutritional and preventative medicine. He is the author of three New York Times bestselling books, including Let Food Be Your Medicine, The Seven Pillars of Health and Dr. Colbert's 'I Can Do This' Diet along with bestsellers Toxic Relief, the Bible Cure series, Living in Divine Health and Stress Less. He has sold more than 10 million books and treated more than 50,000 patients in his years of practicing medicine.
Dr. Colbert's Healthy Gut Zone is published by Siloam, an imprint of Charisma House.
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