Digestive Health Series Part 4: Stomach Acid, Food Reactions and Dysbiosis

Hello again everyone: Here is more on what can happen with low stomach acid: Because stomach acid is the first step of digestion, low acid levels can result in undigested food that will leave the stomach and pass into the intestines where they will ferment and rot. Proteins will putrefy, carbs will ferment and fats will go rancid. This can lead to irritation and inflammation of the intestinal lining and increase the normal permeability of the gut lining and create what is known as ‘leaky gut’. A ‘leaky gut’ is a hyper-permeable gut. This is important because 70 to 75% of our immune system lines the intestines, and when a hyper-permeable gut allows entry of undigested food particles as well as bacteria or whatever came along with the food we ate, it can result in an immune activation that can be seen with food sensitivities, intolerances or allergies. These reactions are all ... Read more

Digestive Health Series Part 3: Stomach Acid Home Remedy

What You Can Try At Home: Since there is no blood test that is specific for this problem, doctors recommend that you simply try an HCL supplement (which is stomach acid) with your food. If you feel better, then low acid is the diagnosis. Since zinc is needed to make stomach acid, then a zinc supplement (zinc carnosine is best..15 to 20 mg.) taken with the HCL at meals for several months can help your body start producing acid again (stop the zinc after several months as it can result in a copper deficiency). Low acid makes it difficult to absorb zinc, and low zinc results in low stomach acid, which means you can’t absorb the zinc…so part of getting your stomach back to normal requires zinc with the HCL for a while. For most of us, this is what will help but: However, this home test requires several caveats: 1. Have an antacid on hand to take if needed when you try the HCL ... Read more

Digestive Health Series Part 2: Stomach Acid

Hello again everyone: As we continue this series, we will answer several questions: what does stomach acid do for us; what are the signs or symptoms that it may be low; what causes low stomach acid. What does stomach acid do for us? Adequate stomach acid is essential for multiple functions: digestion of protein; absorption of minerals and especially iron, zinc and magnesium; absorption of vitamins, especially B-12; a first layer of defense against infection as the acid kills pathogens; assists in breaking down food to small particles which lowers the risk of food allergies (also known as loss of oral tolerance). When stomach acid is low, it can cause the lower esophageal sphincter muscle to relax and allow acid to go into the esophagus and cause heartburn and/or reflux. Also, when acid is low, food will literally rot…and this can happen incredibly fast. Proteins will putrefy, ... Read more

High Or Low Stomach Acid Can Have Identical Symptoms

Hello everyone: Our stomach normally makes a very strong acid called Hydrochloric Acid, and the acidity is measured in what is called pH. A pH of 1 to 7 is considered acidic, and above 7 is considered alkaline. Our stomach normally has a pH of under 3.o. It turns out that too much or too little acid can have similar symptoms: bloating, burping, nausea, gas, indigestion, reflux, discomfort, foul smelling stools, loose stools or constipation and more. Over the next several newsletters, we will run down the causes and solutions, but first some definitions: Hypochlorhydria: means low stomach acid, with a pH above 3. Achlorhydria: means a nearly total absence of acid, with a pH above 5. Too little acid means an alkaline stomach, and that can burn as much as too little acid. Our stomach is meant to be very, very acidic, and when it becomes too alkaline it can burn as bad as too ... Read more

Body On Fire = Brain Fog

Hello again everyone: As you know, I talk about inflammation quite a lot. The reason is that inflammation can cause, aggravate or perpetuate ANY illness, disease or condition. However, it used to be thought that inflammation in the body did not bother the brain because of the blood-brain barrier. Until pretty recently, neuroscientists thought that the brain was ‘privileged’ and not susceptible to negative influences from bodily problems. Well…it turns out that inflammation from chronic illness drives brain degeneration strongly. People with chronic conditions, metabolic disorders (such as being overweight, having blood sugar instability, normal aging, sleep deprivation, stress, not exercising etc.), infections (Lyme, Mono, Herpes, Shingles, etc., and this includes chronic background viral and any other pathogen burden), allergies, gut disturbances, autoimmune conditions, chemical ... Read more

Food For Thought: Save Your Brain With Food

Hello again: Here are two links to papers that reveal that food is essential for brain health, maintenance and the prevention of brain-based disorders. Indeed, the authors state: “Brain diseases, especially during aging, can be due to dietary deficiencies.” This is way too simple and often goes right over our heads. One reason is that it is the long-term consumption of these poor dietary habits that leads to brain malfunction. This means, that the negative effects are unseen until the damage is done many years later. To avoid this catastrophe, it is important to understand that brain health is dependent upon high quality, non-processed, organic foods with as great a variety as possible. Part one: Micronutrients Read more

Save The Ticks!!

Hello everyone: This is basically a public service announcement, as this super nice weather brings us outdoors and into contact with all kinds of bugs, and the ones we most need to be alert to are ticks. If you are ever bitten by a tick, it is important that you save the tick (alive or dead) in a small plastic bag or other sealed container that they cannot escape if still alive. There are several reasons that it is super important to save them: 1.       For identification of the type of tick and if there is any risk of infection. Some sites will test for up to 25 possible tick-born infections, but it depends on the type of tick for which infections they will test for. 2.       To send them in for analysis, i.e., to see if they are carrying infection(s) of any kind so that you know if you need to take quick medical measures with appropriate prescription anti-biotics and other ... Read more

Gratitude and Love: Secrets to a Healthy Life

Hello everyone: On this Memorial Day, we choose to acknowledge and honor our Veterans and to thank them for their sacrifices to ensure our freedom and safety. In addition to being the right thing to do, it also promotes general health in our population. It turns out that gratitude can be cultivated and it will help to undo the negative effects of stress and loneliness. Please recall from earlier articles that both stress and loneliness are direct causes of inflammation, and that inflammation will cause, aggravate or perpetuate virtually all illness. So, by cultivating gratitude, we can feel better mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. Whether it is a prayer of gratitude, or a gratitude journal, or finding a way to be thankful and grateful to someone every day, or to offer a smile to strangers or anyone…virtually any act of gratitude will help us cultivate an aspect of our ... Read more

Exercise and Brain Health: How Much Is Enough?

Hello everyone: Here is some great news about exercise and brain volume. Please recall that any loss of brain volume is NOT a good thing, as it is associated with brain fog, progressing to cognitive impairment progressing to dementia. So some smart folks decided to figure it out for us: https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2730790?guestAccessKey=dbc8a200-1cef-4c35-baef-1f985d6db75c&utm_source=silverchair&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=article_alert-jamanetwork&utm_content=weekly_highlights&utm_term=050419 Importance: Dementia risk may be attenuated by physical activity (PA); however, the specific activity levels optimal for dementia prevention are unclear. Moreover, most older adults are unable to meet the nationally recommended PA guidelines, set at 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous PA per week. Conclusions and Relevance: Every additional hour of ... Read more

Preventing Brain Atrophy In Alzheimer’s: It can be done!!

Hello everyone: This is a pretty astounding paper that reveals how certain B vitamins slowed brain shrinkage and cognitive decline, plus they went even further with great results: https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/110/23/9523.full.pdf “Is it possible to prevent atrophy of key brain regions related to cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease (AD)? One approach is to modify nongenetic risk factors, for instance by lowering elevated plasma homocysteine using B vitamins. In an initial, randomized controlled study on elderly subjects with increased dementia risk (mild cognitive impairment according to 2004 Petersen criteria), we showed that high-dose B-vitamin treatment (folic acid 0.8 mg, vitamin B6 20 mg, vitamin B12 0.5 mg) slowed shrinkage of the whole brain volume over 2 y.” If that was not enough, look what else they did!! “Here, we go further by demonstrating that ... Read more