L Is For Leaky Gut

L - LEAKY GUTEver have days where you look in the mirror and wonder what the heck happened?

Perhaps your skin looks sallow, or blemished – and everything about you seems tired and listless.

Not to mention a new wrinkle or two!

You just.feel.OLD.

If you’re like most people, you’ve likely accepted these annoying physical changes as simply what happens as you get older.

But what if it that wasn’t the truth?

What if – your complexion, your energy, and so many aspects of your health all comes down to the health of your gut?

As in: L is for Leaky Gut!

This is #12 in my series of educational videosA Gluten Primer – Everything You Wanted to Know From A – Z”! – and as with everything in this tutorial, the conversation always comes back to gluten.

Why? Because Leaky Gut plays a KEY role in the onset of Autoimmune Disease, inflammation, and the overall health of your immune system.

Do you see how neatly it all ties together?

The Window Screen In Your Gut – A Gluten Analogy

Bread CrustDoes this sound familiar?

You’ve recently eliminated several foods from your diet – things like gluten, dairy or even eggs – because you know you’re sensitive to them.

And you’re eating other foods instead.

Maybe you’re even eating a lot of these other foods – they’re ‘safe’ after all.

And the next thing you know, you’ve become sensitive to THOSE foods.

What the heck is going on?

Is this just a part of getting older? Or is there a better explanation?

Let me share with you my favorite analogy.

If you think of your average window screen, its job is to keep bugs and gnats out of your home – letting in only the good stuff. (The ‘good stuff’ being fresh air!)

However, what happens when there are holes in that window screen?

Next thing you know, a mosquito or two will be buzzing about your head or maybe even a larger insect.

Now compare this to what might be going on in your digestive tract.

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Is Your Immune System Attacking You?

Thyroid Word CloudDo you have days when your body seems like a bit of a drama queen?

Perhaps you were sick with the flu, you’ve been fighting a migraine, or you’re feeling sore and achy all over for no particular reason. Other days, it might seem that you’re no longer able to tolerate the foods you used to eat with abandon – you’re dealing with a major case of indigestion and you’re carrying around an extra twenty pounds (that you can’t seem to lose, no matter what you eat).

Does any of this sound familiar?

I call these on-going annoyances “mimics, marauders and masqueraders” – because that’s basically what they are – but what I’d really like you to take away from this, is that it’s an important part of your immune system and how it functions.

The good news is that your immune system is beautifully designed to deal with these pranksters at a moment’s notice, and it’s exactly that on your behalf so 24/7 – even though it might seem at times that your body is working against you.

Sometimes your immune system DOES get confused. However, even though you might think it’s making a mistake, the reality is that it’s simply doing what it’s designed to do – protect you. Consider too, that 70% of your immune system is in your gutBut because it’s inside, and you can’t see it, and you can’t necessarily feel it – you’re not at all aware that anything is wrong.

The symptoms are often subtle.

What’s really happening, though, is that some of these invaders are actually very clever,  mimicking or masquerading as something other than what they really are.

Let me explain.

 

Cross-Reactivity

As you may already know, gluten is a family of proteins found in wheat and is therefore present in any foods that are made from wheat – although it can sometimes appear in other guises, as well.

[Read more…]

Autoimmune Disease & You

ImpressionDid you know that Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition?

Did you also know that autoimmune diseases are on the rise?

In fact, statistically, if you’ve already been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, your chance of acquiring two or three more is extremely high.

Kind of sobering, isn’t it?

By its very definition, autoimmune disease means that your body – specifically your immune system – is attacking YOU.

It isn’t something that’s supposed to happen.

(And doesn’t, as long as your immune system is functioning properly).

But right now, we’re actually in the midst of an autoimmune epidemic – that’s how common autoimmune diseases have become.

Yet, here’s something else that might surprise you:

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Is Removing Gluten Always The Answer?

Celiac Disease concept. Book with stethoscope and pills.Should you remove gluten from your diet? (I get asked this question a lot).

The short answer is “It depends”.

What do I mean by this? In a nutshell, it depends on what’s going on in your body.

It depends on the signs and symptoms you’re experiencing.

And it also depends on your test results!

Of course, if your tests come back negative, then you’re in the clear – at least for the time being – more on that later.

But it’s super important that you get the RIGHT tests!

You don’t want to stop there, either.

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The Environment & Your Symptoms – Is There A Mismatch?

The Nursery toy, gas mask, old watch on white background.10,000 years.

Does that seem like an eternity to you? If so, you’re not alone.

Yet, 10,000 years is the number most often quoted by doctors, scientists and other experts, when explaining why grains – especially wheat – are a relatively new addition to the human diet.

You might be thinking, “How can that be? Haven’t humans been eating grains for most of their existence?”

How can something so abundant, and so integral to your diet, be harmful?

It’s what we call an ‘evolutionary mismatch’.

In other words, much of our modern lifestyle is based on products and foodstuffs that the human body isn’t designed to digest or otherwise process.

This includes chemicals and a host of other modern ‘conveniences’ that, in the long run, do us more harm than good – even though societies have seemingly thrived on grains for thousands of years.

That said, there’s a lot of talk in the media these days about threats to the environment, and whether the EPA will survive our current political climate.

Without getting overly dramatic – or political – about this state of affairs, here are some simple steps you can take to protect your health.

Starting today!

 

Knowledge is Power

What if government oversight of the environment and our food supply were to disappear overnight? What then?

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Introducing: A Gluten Primer – Everything You Wanted to Know From A-Z!

Do You Have Street Smarts?

Always Seek Knowledge AcronymWhen it comes to managing your special diet – do you have “Street Smarts”?

You might be wondering what I mean by this.

While not always easy to come by, Street Smarts means knowing how to handle just about any situation that comes along – especially when you find yourself tempted to stray.

It means knowing that when you’re harried and frustrated by circumstances beyond your control – or, well meaning folks who don’t seem to understand or care – you’re able to make an informed choice because you understand the long-term damage that can result from that one exposure, however small.

My newly released video series A Gluten Primer – Everything You Wanted to Know From A-Z explains well, literally everything – in a collection of 26-videos plus a 2-hour tutorial.

In a nutshell, though, here’s what it ultimately comes down to:

 

Knowing what foods are safe to eat

It all starts here.

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Are You Losing Your Mind?

AlzheimerDo you ever have days where you’re feeling super forgetful?

Like not remembering the name of your favorite book, or movie, or that ‘thingy’ you’ve been meaning to buy for weeks – what was that called again?

Maybe you’ve realized that the lines have blurred over the sequence leading up to an event that – even though it happened years ago, used to be so clear in your mind.

A ‘Brian Williams’ moment, if you will.

Then again, maybe you’re thinking one thing, but the words don’t come out quite right.

What the heck is that all about?

Are you losing your mind?

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Mimics, Marauders & Masqueraders

Comedy and tragedyEver feel like there’s a lot of drama happening in your body?

I call these mimics, marauders and masqueraders. They’re present 24/7. The good news is that your immune system is beautifully designed to deal with these pranksters at a moment’s notice, through the.

However, sometimes your immune system gets confused. You might think it’s making a mistake, but the reality is that it’s simply doing what it’s designed to do – protect you. What’s really happening here is that some of these invaders are actually very clever,  mimicking or masquerading as something other than what they really are.

Let me explain.

 

Cross-Reactivity

As you may already know, gluten is a family of proteins found in wheat and is therefore present in any foods that are made from wheat – although it can sometimes appear in other guises, as well.

[Read more…]