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The Best Years in Life

Natural Options for Inflammatory Bowel Disease

by Luella May

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) refers to a group of disorders in which the intestines become inflamed. Two of the most serious types of IBD are ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Ulcerative colitis is limited to the colon or large intestine whereas Crohn's disease can involve any part of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the anus. Whichever form of IBD one may have, nature offers remedies which can be safer and more effective than mainstream medications.

 

IBD has no known cause. Yet, an interesting fact is that it appears to be mostly prevalent in western societies. This could pose the question as to whether the Standard American Diet (SAD) plays a role in acquiring this disease.

More severe form of IBD can have symptoms that can include rectal bleeding, anemia, fatigue, loss of appetite, loss of nutrients and body fluids, weight loss, and joint pain.  Allopathic medicine usually treats this disease with immunosuppressive drugs. Although the individual may experience short term symptom relief, these types of medications can lead to a worsening of overall health due to numerous, and sometimes dangerous, side effects.

When addressing IBD naturally, probiotics should be first on the list for anyone suffering from IBD. Probiotics help to control the number of harmful bacteria in the stomach, enabling the friendly bacteria to thrive. Probiotics also help to reduce inflammation and improve the protective mucus lining in the stomach.

There have been reports of Crohn's and other inflammatory bowel diseases being remedied successfully with a combination of colloidal silver, plant derived minerals, supplemental oxygen and probiotics.  This combo works best when the probiotics are taken at different times than the colloidal silver to help re-establish good intestinal bacteria).

One very effective supplement in treating ulcerative colitis is Bromelain. Bromelain reduces inflammation, speeds healing and reduces the incidence and severity of colitis.

Omega 3s are also another effective anti-inflammatory. Studies have shown that omega 3s may alleviate symptoms and help to prevent a recurrence of this disease.

People with IBD are at a greater risk for getting colon cancer. Many people with either IBD or colon cancer have been found to be deficient in folic acid.  Studies have found that supplementing with folic acid significantly decreases the risk of cancer for people with IBD.  Some medications may cause a drop in folate levels.

Aloe vera gel has an anti-inflammatory effect. A study in Alimentary Pharmacology and Theraputics (2004; 19:739-47) reported that aloe vera gel relieves ulcerative colitis symptoms.

The herb boswellia has been found to block chemical actions involved in inflammation. Further, boswellia does not cause stomach irritation as do some prescription medications used in treating this condition.

Diet plays a very important role in preventing, treating, and controlling IBD. Careful attention should be given to foods rich in vitamin C. It has been found that vitamin C has a protective effect and results in a lower risk of IBD. We are all familiar with fruits that contain vitamin C. However, there are less obvious foods that also contain vitamin C which include strawberries, papayas, mangoes, kiwi, parsley, red, yellow and orange bell peppers, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes.

Avoiding allergenic foods, such as wheat, dairy products and corn has been shown to control the disease in some people. Sugar, sweets, carbohydrates, and alcohol have been associated with IBD. These foods actually cause the disease to progress and may cause a relapse when in remission.

Lastly, stress adversely affects the digestive process, worsening the symptoms of IBD. Stress reduction techniques such as relaxation exercises and meditation should be included while focusing on treating this disease.

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/ibd-crohns-disease/inflammatory-bowel-syndrome
https://health.google.com/health/ref/Ulcerative+colitis
http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/ulcerative-colitis-000166.htm
http://bastyrcenter.org/content/view/694

    

Your hosts Tony Isaacs and Luella May

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