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The Gut & Immune System Connection

Updated: Jun 19, 2019

It is believed that 80% or more of our immune strength lives in and comes from our digestive tract - the gut, the intestines, and the colon. That means that our digestive health is directly related to immune health. In a day and age with so many illnesses, viruses, toxins, and pathogens, it seems wise to have a good fortress of defense against potential illness causing invaders. It then also seems wise to have a strong and healthy digestive system to help keep our immune strength at its peak.

Some basic tips for healthy digestion

*Eat freshly made meals, made with organic whole food ingredients *Avoid eating processed foods, junk foods, refined sugars/oil/and flours, and non-organic foods *Eat plenty of probiotic-rich foods, such as raw sauerkraut, kim chee, rejeuvelac, kefir, etc. *Avoid eating foods that are cold or frozen *Avoid drinking cold or sweet fluids with meals *Chew your food thoroughly *Eat in moderation - avoid overeating *Practice skipping a meal from time to time *Practice a one day fast once a week *Drink a cup of hot water an hour before and after each meal *Reduce salt intake *Practice proper food combining *Give thanks for your food

The pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides used in conventional agriculture are known to destroy your good gut bacteria. Be sure to choose organically grown foods to ensure a healthy gut.

The Importance of Probiotics

This good bacteria or healthy flora, helps keep your digestive system healthy and strong - and in turn - your immune system healthy and strong.This is why choosing organic foods is so important. Antibiotics also destroy the good gut bacteria. Eating plenty of probiotic-rich foods will help re-establish this healthy bacteria and get you back on the road to wellness.

Overcooked, old, stale, high sugar, refined, chemically altered, and highly processed foods are nothing but poison to the body. These foods are typically tainted with many toxic residues and lacking life force. If you want good health avoid such "foods" at all costs! Alcohol, refined sugar, refined flours, and diets high in processed meats, dairy, peanuts, grains and gluten tend to create a lot of mucus in the body. This mucus slows down digestion and impairs absorption of nutrients. For your best health avoid these products. Too many nuts, nut butters,and starches can also create mucus - use these foods in moderation. Nuts should be soaked and sprouted before eating. Cold foods and drinks put out your digestive "fire". You want a strong digestive fire to have a healthy digestion. Avoid cold and frozen drinks and foods - saving ice cream or frozen or iced drinks for a special occasional treat.

Supercharge your health with a cleanse

A structured cleanse program, such as my Full Body Cleanse, is an excellent way to improve overhealth and especially digestion. By cleansing out toxins, congested energy, mucus, and more, you can quickly make improvements to your digestion, and in turn supercharge your immune system. I like to follow my cleanses with a 3-7 day fresh-pressed juice fast, and a 3 day water fast for even better results.

Fasting gives your digestive system a break. It allows time for healing and rejuvenation. It is good to go "empty" once in a while. Many health professionals recommend a 24-36 hour fast once a week for ultimate health. Longer juice fasts can also be a great way to get plenty of nutrients, gently detoxify the body, while allowing digestion to rest some.

The power of herbs

There are many herbs and supplements that can assist in digestion. Papain found in papaya, and bromelain found in pineapple are two great digestive enzymes that can assist in better digestion of certain foods. Ginger is an excellent herb for digestion - try eating a small bit of pickled ginger or small sips of warm ginger tea with meals. Black pepper and turmeric can help break down fats, stimulate the liver, and aid in digestion. Many carminative herbs assist in digestion - fennel, cardamom, anise, nutmeg, and cinnamon are some. A couple tablespoons of raw apple cider or lemon juice in hot water before a meal can stimulate the digestive forces. Most culinary herbs and spices have some positive effect of digestive health when used properly.

Nourish your digestion and you will build a healthy immune system. With a healthy immune system you will be less likely to fall ill or develop disease.

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