Gut – Thyroid Connection

Gut-Thyroid Connection The gut-thyroid connection is one of the most important and overlooked aspects of healthy thyroid function. Did you know that many diseases can be traced to a breakdown in the gastrointestinal tract? 70 percent of your immune system resides in this area – your gut, and the GI tract has many important functions for your health including digestion, nutrient absorption, elimination, detoxification, hormone metabolism and energy production. 99% of the neurotransmitters in your body are actually created in the intestine (part of your GI tract), and every brain chemical known as a neurotransmitter is found there. This means the GI tract, or gut, plays a very important role in achieving optimal thyroid health. For proper thyroid function, your body must convert T4 into the more active T3 and 20% of this happens in your intestines. In order for this conversion to happen, healthy colonies of beneficial bacteria must be present in the GI tract. An imbalance in the bacteria ratio (of good vs. bad) in the GI tract (dysbiosis) can lead to low thyroid function. This explains why so many patients with thyroid hormone imbalance also have digestive problems but normal thyroid blood chemistry panels. Why do people get Gut Problems? One of the most important things to look at is how many rounds of antibiotics you have taken in your life. The more antibiotics you have taken, the more likely you are to have abnormal gut bacteria as well as yeast overgrowth and parasites. Antibiotics can cause an imbalance in your gut bacteria for up to 13 months after just a single round of antibiotics. Additionally,...

Fermented Foods Vs Pickling

Hello, This is Rhonda from Pure Simple Self! So some common questions that I seem to get asked often, being a Digestive Wellness Specialist are “Is the sauerkraut I buy in the store good for me?” or “Are these pickled beets healthy?” If the question is in relation to your gut health, or overall health than my first response or question would be First- ”Did you read the ingredients on the labels? and 2nd , – Are you looking for a probiotic or cultured food or just a good source to get your veggies?” Today I would like to explain what are Fermented Foods, and how it is different from Pickled Foods. Lets first start by explaining the Pickling process. Pickling is technically a method of “cooking” or breaking down food, as it is a process that can both preserve food and/or make otherwise “raw” food edible and ready for immediate consumption. This breaking down can occur two different ways: (1) pickles can be fermented, or (2) a quick vinegar or lemon juice massage will also yield the sour, pickled taste you crave. But wait- what about fermenting? Isn’t that the same thing? So here’s the story. All fermented foods are pickled, but not all pickled foods are fermented. Fermented food sits out for a substantial period of time, thereby introducing ambient bacteria that will naturally ferment the food that is undergoing the pickling process. So, the way to make a homemade pickled food into fermented food is to let it sit out for at least 10 days or longer with all the food fully submerged in the liquid...

ADHD – Autism and Gut Health

8 Things that you can Implement to Improve Your ADHD Child’s Gut Health Digestion & Enzymes How they Relate to Autism & ADHD Science is pretty clear. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics agrees: There is a strong connection between brain function, behavior and the digestive system.  Scientists have specifically drawn a connection between gut health and many disorders, including autism and ADHD. We know that the gut – and specifically, the millions upon millions of bacteria within it – interact with the brain in multiple ways, including the immune system and the nervous system. We also know that your gut actually has its own complex network of neurons that is referred to as the Enteric Nervous System (often called our “Second Brain”). {Read more about your Second Brain & ADHD here} When they say “complex” they really mean it! Here are just a few fun facts: There are actually more neurons directly surrounding your child’s gastrointestinal tract than in their entire spinal cord! Ninety percent of your child’s serotonin levels (an essential neurotransmitter) are housed in the gut – not the brain in your head! Those food allergies so many people talk about – you know, gluten, dairy, dyes, artificial sugar, etc.? At the most basic level, allergies generate histamines. Histamines compete with dopamine, another essential neurotransmitter. More histamine means less dopamine and more mental health dysfunction. Many scientists have made the not-so-big leap to claim that food allergies can cause depressive-symptoms, brain fog, anxiety, and general irritability. Ok, now that I have Your Attention HERE are 8 Things that you can Implement to Improve Your ADHD Child’s Gut Health Below I’ve listed eight...

Top 10 Reasons To Chew Your Food

The most important aspect of nutrition is the one that most of the people do not pay attention to – chewing!  Just because it is so logical to chew food, like breathing, people seem to neglect it. Digestion initially begins in the mouth –  As you start to chew your food, digestive enzymes found in saliva begin to break down, preparing for nutrient absorption.  It’s importantly to chew your food thoroughly to achieve maximum absorption of all your vitamins and minerals. So lets do the count down for the top 10 reasons for chewing your food Reason 10 – Helps the lining of your throat and Esophagus When you eat fast and you swallow large mouthfuls you can get reflux which can damage the lining of the throat and esophagus. Did you know that around 44% of Americans experience reflux or heartburn at least once a month, 20% have it every week and 7% suffer from it daily? Now you know why. 9.  Connect with others and Receive Primary Foods When you sit down with someone and eat your meal in peace, chewing every bit of your food, you actually have time to enjoy your friend’s company. You have time to enjoy a conversation, look at them in the eye, connect with them and enrich your relationship. This is Primary Food and most of the time is far more important than nutrition. 8. Helps you Stay Active Most of the people binge on coffee, energy drinks, and sweet things because they feel powerless throughout the day. I hear people all the time complaining of having no energy. How can you change all this? By chewing your food properly! When digestion takes place how it was meant to be, your...

Are you in Chronic Pan?  Chronic Fatigue??  Do you Suffer From Fibromyalgia??

 Fibromyagia What is Fibromyagia? Fibromyalgia is one of the most common chronic pain conditions, affecting more than 5 million people in the US. Yet, fibromyalgia can be difficult and, at times, a frustrating journey to diagnosis and to treat. Fibromyalgia pain is different than pain you may experience from a headache or sprained ankle. Fibromyalgia is a specific kind of pain that’s chronic, widespread, and often accompanied by tenderness. “Chronic” means that the pain lasts a long time—at least 3 months or longer. Many people experience fibromyalgia pain for years before being diagnosed. “Widespread” means that it is felt all over, in both the upper and lower parts of the body. However, many people with fibromyalgia feel their pain in specific areas of their body, such as in their shoulder or neck. And “Tenderness” means that even a small amount of pressure can cause a lot of pain. To most physicians the pain of Fibromyalgia Syndrome is a mystery. Its unrelenting and debilitating pain is often relegated to being of psychosomatic origin due to the fact that it does not decrease with the use of NSAID’s, opiates or psychotropics. In the present mindset of medicine if these medications do not relieve the pain then it must be all in the patients mind! Let’s use a simple example we’ve all experienced. When you were a child you likely at some time put rubber bands or string around your wrist and cut the blood supply off to your hand. At first the hand went numb. Then while turning an interesting shade of blue or purple, it began to throb. The more...

The Secret to Losing Weight

THE SECRET TO LOSING WEIGHT OK so the Holidays are behind us and it is time to get our health back on track by eating right and to lose the extra pounds we may have put on. So where do you start?  Join a new health club, take up Yoga, eat more salads, and drink protein smoothies??All of these are an excellent way to start, however I want to take this time to focus on our approach to your diet.  Drinking more water and making cleaner food choices is going to help make you feel better but sometimes the weight takes a little longer to come off than we would like it to, especially as we get older. The food we eat is our fuel for energy, it is quite simple.  However if the food we eat is not digested properly and the nutrition is not being absorbed than we run into problems of feeling sluggish, tired, even hungry.  Enzymes help with this. Enzymes Role in Weight Loss Enzymes are essential for supporting healthy weight loss. Lipase is an enzyme that is abundant in foods that are raw and since very few of us have a diet rich in raw foods we lack sufficient amounts to burn normal amounts of fat in our diets. When we eat diets rich in fat we really suffer as our body cannot burn this extra fat nor turn it to energy. When you have enough Lipase your body is able to break down and dissolve the fat stored throughout the body. Without this vital enzyme fat accumulates and is stored in your arteries, organs,...