I’ve seen many people heal their gut in exceptional circumstances by making some basic changes. These were not complicated changes that required lots of money.
There are many reasons why you could have a digestive problem. Different types of digestive issues present themselves at different ages. If you want to repair the gut, you must understand the importance of the way you think and the way you live. Lifestyle often gets missed when it comes to addressing digestive problems. Many practitioners look at digestion as purely a mechanical process that requires medication if it isn’t working correctly.
But, here’s the thing: Most people can entirely repair their digestive tract without any kind of medication whatsoever. The digestive system is a beautiful system that works remarkably well, particularly if the mind is relaxed. If you start to develop fear and anxiety about your health, the symptoms escalate. People may start taking a daily drug that reinforces the idea that they have a problem. The first problem then leads to a second and third problem. Before you know it, they are very sick.
Many people that I have seen who are sick with digestive problems started with something straightforward. The problem became more complex as more and more medications were added to their treatment regime.
My recommendation is to not take that path because it can be challenging to reverse the problems, particularly in older people.
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I would urge you to look at your relationships, your occupation, and your overall stress levels. You want to try and identify the “cause and effect” that has resulted in your digestive problems. If you do that, you’ll save yourself a lot of misery down the road. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t take the time to think about the circumstances surrounding the beginning of their gut problems.
The key steps you need to take to prevent or heal digestive problems are:
1. Assess cause and effect: Think carefully about what was going on in your life when your gastrointestinal symptoms began. Then address the cause(s) you identified. Often the symptoms resolve when the original cause has been addressed.
2. Make lifestyle changes as required: If it’s been too long to get a true sense of cause and effect, ask yourself if there are any medications you can stop. Are there any lifestyle changes you can make? Start to lead a less stressful life by taking things off your plate. Make changes to your lifestyle as required to
ensure your gut problems don’t continue indefinitely. You’ll be surprised at how your health changes when you address the stress in your life.
How you think with your primary brain affects how you think with your secondary brain, which is your gut. In turn, when your digestive system isn’t working well, it’s going to affect your primary brain. It’s a two-way street.
I can guarantee that if you have been sick over the long term, there is some problem that needs to be solved that is not food-related or health-related.
3. Be honest with yourself: Are you drinking too much alcohol? Are you eating crappy food? Are you treating yourself or others disrespectfully, but pretending everything is fine? You need to be honest about the habits that are contributing to your health problems.
4. Balance in life: Do you have enough downtime or relaxation time? Are you getting enough sleep? Sleep is one of the most important factors when it comes to recovering from a digestive problem, an emotional problem, or a physical problem. Sleep often helps to repair any kind of problem.
People these days want to get things done fast. They approach sleep the same way. They want to get sleep done quickly and get back to their mobile phones. That’s not the way true rest works. It’s not about being on the “cutting edge” of sleep. It’s about living a more leisurely life that includes adequate amounts of restorative sleep.
Being relaxed stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which is an anti-stress system. We call it the “rest and digest” system. This system is the relaxation and healing mode.
Genuine relaxation does not involve technology like your mobile phone or iPad. The type of relaxing that involves just lying on the bed and breathing is what is going to kick start your body’s healing response.
5. The breathing response: Many people don’t breathe properly. Instead, they have quick and shallow breaths. Along with eating, breathing is one of the most important things to do correctly. Breathing is the most potent stimulator of the parasympathetic nervous system. If you want to boost your body’s healing power, you need to learn how to breathe properly. Very slow, deep nasal breathing is the goal.
Professor Konstantin Buteyko invented a form of breathing that I highly recommend. I’ve seen people go to Buteyko practitioners to address their breathing. Once they learned how to breathe properly, their anxiety improved, they began to sleep better, and weight and appetites improved. All of this stemmed from learning to breathe correctly.