Despite there not being many conversations about it, IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) is a severe condition and an umbrella term for an inflamed digestive tract. IBD refers to two kinds of inflammation:

Ulcerative Colitis: If you have inflammation and ulcers in your colon and possibly your rectum, you’re dealing with Ulcerative Colitis.
Crohn’s disease: Crohn’s disease refers to a severe inflammation of your digestive tract and it can spread to other tissues too.

Why is it crucial to deal with IBD as soon as it happens?   The problem is that the infamous Bowel Disease is a type of auto-immune disease.  As the condition worsens, the body’s immune system begins to attack itself.  IBD generally isn’t a fatal medical problem, but it does need medical supervision and natural therapies because it may create life-threatening situations.

What action can you take: The cause behind the bowel disease “isn’t known” BUT THERE ARE PROVEN LINKS TO ANTIBIOTIC USE, HIGH GRAIN-CARBOHYDRATE DIETS, INDUSTRIAL EMULSIFIERS IN PROCESSED FOODS, GUT INFECTIONS AND NUTRIENT DEFICIENCIES (ESPECIALLY VITAMIN D, RETINOL, ZINC AND B VITAMINS SUCH AS B5 AND FOLATE). We do know the factors that aggravate it.  Processed diet, low fibre diets, poorly-managed stress, a family history of IBD, sedentary life, smoking, whether you live in an industrialized country or not – all these factors and more contribute to your likelihood of getting IBD.

Here are a couple of things you should keep in mind:

Micro-nutrients: Make sure your intake of micronutrients meets the optimum (not the minimum) requirement.  This varies from person to person depending on your genetics and life stressors.  A healthy intake of nutrients like Zinc, Folate, and Vitamin D can have a lasting impact on your body, protecting you from any chances of having IBD.  Even if you do contract IBD, the presence of the three nutrients can help your body heal much faster.  Zinc helps heal the tissues in the gut, Vitamin D significantly reduces the chances of getting IBD (is essential for day to day gut repair) and Folate helps maintain or repair the digestive tract and intestines.

Anti-inflammatory foods: The whole point of bowel disease is that it inflames the bowel and this inflammation spreads to other tissues. Regularly eating anti-inflammatory foods or adding bioavailable forms of vitamins and minerals as part of your diet can really help. SUPPLEMENTAL OMEGA 3 IS OFTEN VERY HELPFUL IN ULCERATIVE COLITIS BUT NOT IN CROHN’S, WHERE IT’S BETTER TO JUST EAT FISH RATHER THAN SUPPLEMENTING.  Omega 3 oils help fight inflammation, but you’ll also need the right vitamins and minerals required by the body to make use of the Omega 3 oils.

Stress: Stress is a major factor in causing or aggravating IBD.  Stress can cause your body to use up most of the anti-inflammatory nutrients from foods you’ve consumed. That’s how the body reacts to stress. Of course, you should maintain a healthy diet and take measures to lower stress. But if you know you’re more stressed than usual, MAKE SURE TO GET A NATURAL WHOLE FOOD DIET RICH IN DIFFERENT COLOURS OF VEGETABLES, HERBS AND SPICES, OMEGA 3 OILS FROM FOOD, ADEQUATE PROTEIN AND CUT BACK ON THE NUTRIENT ROBBERS LIKE REFINED FOODS, INDUSTRIAL EMULSIFIERS, ALCOHOL AND STIMULANTS.  AND GET LOTS OF WATER.

Want more information about how nutritional and lifestyle change could help you heal your bowel?
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