Back to Basics - Gut Health

Back to Basics – Gut Health


From something as simple as occasional constipation or diarrhea, all the way to the most complex neurologic degenerative disorder, the gastrointestinal system is involved.

In the not-too-distant past, there was typically no mention of GI function when talking about Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, or other chronic diseases.


Digestive system health is crucial for the body’s overall well being

Go back to the writings of Hippocrates, who said that all disease begins in the gut, and you can see why functional and integrative medicine practitioners investigate the GI system first.

We take it for granted, but if you could stretch out the small intestines flat, it would take up the surface area of a tennis court!  Clearly it is a very important organ for extracting nutrition from our food.

When the small intestine is damaged or stressed, it doesn’t function appropriately.   Specifically, it lets particles through to the bloodstream which create a constant immune response.   This is known as intestinal permeability, or leaky gut.


Leaky Gut

The causes of leaky gut are many.  Likely everybody has a certain degree of it.   The unhealthier you are, it is probable the gut is leaky in proportion.

“But, Karen, I don’t have any GI complaints, how do you know my ____________ started in my gut?” (Fill in the blank with your chronic disease name.)


Gut Restoration

Most patients who didn’t think they had GI complaints when they started a gut restoration plan discover they actually did when they near successful completion of a well-designed program.  They had lived with their “normal” for so long, they didn’t know it was abnormal.

It is important to consult with a qualified functional or integrative health provider as you embark on a gut restoration program.


Elements of a Successful Restoration Program

I do want to give you an overview of the steps in a successful program so you know what to expect:

            REMOVE – artificial sweeteners, food allergens/sensitivities, processed foods, sugar, bad bacteria

            REPLACE – digestive enzymes, hydrochloric acid, improved diet.

            REINOCULATE – with the right probiotics

            REGENERATE/REPAIR – using natural anti-inflammatories and medical foods designed for very specific purposes

            RETEST – see if what you’re doing is working – data, data, data!

            RETAIN – maintain the progress with a foundational nutrition, supplement, and exercise plan

                    [These steps are adapted from Dr. Rob Silverman.]


The point is, don’t do this on your own. Consult with your healthcare provider, use products that are pharmaceutical-grade, and get the right information based on thorough testing.

At Innovative Healthcare, we will:

  1. Guide you on a journey back to a “Healthy Gut”
  2. Help you use your insurance when possible
  3. Always let you know the costs not covered by insurance

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