How To Get Over Your Gut Issues - Part 2

This blog post is a sequel to the How to get over your gut issues.

As I write this I have been on my treatment program for nearly four months. It has not been an easy time but I have persevered. I am glad to report an improvement in my condition. An improvement that seems to be holding. Previously, any attempt I made was soon nullified and the frustration with the situation escalated in ample proportion, yet this time it seems to be going in the right direction. I am not counting my chickens yet, but I am carefully optimistic.

My treatment program started in early March. I got all of my test results and consulted a nutritionist who is experienced in dealing with people with issues similar to mine. She was very positive from the start and insisted that all would be ok. She explained that the damage to my gut over the years has led to near complete non-absorption of nutrients and a severely escalated protective response. This over exaggeration of the protective response was what was causing a lot of my symptoms.

My test results indicated, as mentioned before, that I had very bad gut flora. The friendly, happy-to-help, beneficial bacteria were non-existent and instead I had a horde of raging abusive bacteria, hell bent on destroying their surroundings. Thrown in the mix were Candida yeast and some unpleasant waterborne parasites. The test results also indicated how to get rid of them. Various herbs (in my case Garlic, Oregano, and UVA Ursi) were highlighted to kill the bad bacteria and the Candida. The parasites required some homeopathic remedies to eject them from the gut wall, and some support for my drainage pathways and liver to help clear them out of the system completely. To repopulate the good bacteria I was prescribed a high quality probiotic. Along with this I had to make the environment hostile for the invaders and friendly for the healing process to take place. This meant getting serious with the food. No more half baked efforts to try and make a difference. This time I was determined to do absolutely everything in my power to get myself sorted.

My eating habits were not horrible before. In general terms and based on western standards I was eating very healthy. Yet, it was slowly ruining me. I guess my Ironman Triathlon hobby was not helping me, as I on some days I required a better part of 5000 Calories just to break even. To cut it short, all the nasties in my gut were thriving on sugar. For those who are not familiar with this, sugar is anything with an “-ose” at the end (glucose, fructose, lactose, galactose, sucrose) and pretty much all processed food comes with a goodly helping of the stuff. See, sugar tastes nice. Simple as that. Hence the food manufacturers put it into everything to sell more products. For me this proved to be a bit of a nightmare. I had to ignore about 95% available in the super markets. Including the fruits, dairy products, all grain products, any fermented foods, as well as anything with artificial bulkers and chemicals in them as well as alcohol. How was I supposed to find 5000 Calories per day??? Specifically for my Ironman Triathlon training I was unable to use any of the commercially available shakes or energy drinks or even the gels to fuel me.

Based on the blood test results I was also required to take a few supplements. These included Vitamin B2, Zinc, Omega-6 fatty acids and CoEnzyme Q-10. These were found to be sorely needed by the system and all of them have an important role in the cell energy production and/or healing process.

Sounds pretty grim at the moment, doesn’t it?

Well, let me tell you how the last four months have played out and then you make a judgement. At first I was a bit shocked. The first foray into the supermarket went in a bit of a dazed blur. I think I came home with about five items. I was simply unable to even comprehend how I might pull through. This forced me to get more creative. I started looking outside of the list of restrictions, and into the list of non-excluded possibilities. Hence, fish, meat, poultry, all manner of vegetables, nuts and seeds, and corn were on the allowed list. I became much more innovative in the kitchen and started making stuff from scratch and amending recipes found on the internet or in cookery books to suit my requirements. I am now eating a diet much more varied and diverse than ever in my life and I am looking forward to learning new things and trying out new recipes. I have been able to get out of the western ‘sandwich and everything with chips’ food culture.

So far I have been very good with it. I have managed to stick to the guidelines almost completely, apart from a few occasions in restaurants where I simply had to choose the least of damaging option. I must confess, I sometimes feel down about it. I cannot have the yummy desserts nor am I allowed to unwind with a glass of nice red. For the most part, however, I don’t even miss the things I used to eat as a normal part of my diet. Hopefully I will be able to tolerate red wine, chocolate and nice cheese at some point in the not too distant future.

The results so far have been encouraging. I feel generally better. I feel more balanced in terms of my energy levels. I don’t get tummy pain or cramps. My bloating has virtually disappeared (it returns to a degree if I have been naughty). I find that my head is clearer than it ever used to be. My recovery from training and racing seems to be quicker than before, thanks to being “Fat-Adapted”.

I tested myself recently with some naughty stuff. I confess, I had some ice cream, chocolate and a couple of biscuits, simply to see what would happen. It took a couple of days for any of the symptoms to manifest, but that was enough to convince me to stop further experimenting and to go back to being good again. I know I am not yet healed. My guts still have a way to go, but I am hopeful and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Based on my experience – would I recommend it? YES! It has been very educational and despite the tough days it has been rewarding. I am now much more in control of myself than I was only a few months ago. For those of you who are suffering, please, do yourselves a favour and get on the road to recovery now. You will thank yourself for it.

I will update again in due course.

Yours in Health,


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