WHAT CAUSES INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE?
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a chronic condition that causes inflammation of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The cause of IBD is thought to be impairment in the way your immune system handles intestinal bacteria. This improper immune system response leads to an inflammatory condition that can result in an autoimmune disorder. If you have an autoimmune disorder it means your immune system is attacking and destroying healthy body tissue.
Symptoms of IBD
Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are collectively known as inflammatory bowel diseases and are characterized by symptoms such as:
- Abdominal cramps and severe pain
- Frequent diarrhea
- Rectal bleeding
- Weight loss and fatigue
- Nausea and fever
- Other symptoms might include disorders of your eyes, liver, gallbladder, muscles and joints, kidneys and skin
The Vitamin D Deficiency Factor
Sufficient levels of Vitamin D may help your body produce over 200 anti microbial peptides that help fight infection. There are many experts who believe inflammatory bowel disease has an infectious trigger. These 200 anti microbial peptides have different biological activities in addition to killing pathogens and as yet it's not clear which combination makes vitamin D so essential.
“The existence and importance of this part of our immune response makes it clear that humans and other primates need to maintain sufficient levels of vitamin D,” said Adrian Gombart, an associate professor of biochemistry and a principal investigator with the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University.
The Milk Connection
Studies are pointing to pasteurized milk as one of the culprits in Crohn’s disease. An interesting fact about pasteurized milk is that although the disease causing bacteria are killed during pasteurization so they can’t multiply the dead bacteria are left in the milk. The current thinking is that the dead bacteria can serve as a stimulus to your immune system causing autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s disease. Research found that the mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis (MAP) was present in about 92 percent of patients with Crohn’s disease compared to 26 percent of patients in a control group. And that MAP is still present in about two percent of milk even after commercial pasteurization.
Other Potential Causes of IBD
- When antibiotics are taken for various purposes your protective, healthy bacteria are eliminated and yeast growth goes unchecked. The resulting effects can be very similar to those of IBD
- Some scientists have directly implicated yeast and fungal toxins (mycotoxins) as the cause of Crohn’s disease. Former World Health Organization expert Dr. A.V. Costantini found that people with Crohn’s often have aflatoxin, a mycotoxin made by Aspergillus molds, in their blood. The disease activity in patients with Crohn’s was lower while they followed a yeast-free diet specifically avoiding baker’s and brewer’s yeasts
Most conventional treatments focus on relieving your symptoms with anti-inflammatory drugs or surgically removing the affected part of your intestines. Instead of such a drastic approach try these first:
- Eliminate grains from your diet. There is fairly strong Paleolithic evidence that many thousands of years ago most humans did not consume many grains. They were hunter-gatherers who subsisted mostly on vegetables and meats – meaning over 99 percent of our genetic make-up was in place well before we started consuming grains
- Avoid starch and sugar-rich foods as well
- Take healthy doses of probiotics and eat fermented foods such as natto, kefir, sauerkraut and kimchi
- Add coconut oil to your diet. The anti-inflammatory and healing effects of coconut oil have been shown to play a role in soothing inflammation and healing injury in the digestive tract. Coconut oil also has antimicrobial properties that promote intestinal health by killing troublesome microorganisms that may cause chronic inflammation
- Blueberries are rich in polyphenols which have both antimicrobial and antioxidant effects. When combined with probiotics the combo not only reduces inflammation-inducing bacteria but also increases the amount of healthy good bacteria. A simple way to get the benefits of both would be to blend organic blueberries with raw kefir to make a probiotic-rich smoothie
- Fish oil is another absolutely essential element of preventing and controlling inflammatory bowel disease. Krill oil is a good choice
Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis are found in men and women in equal numbers and seem to have a genetic component. About twenty percent of IBD sufferers also have a relative – usually a parent or sibling – with some form of inflammatory bowel disease. If it runs in your family begin now to prevent this disease from happening to you. And if you already have symptoms instead of looking for relief in prescription medications try these authentic solutions instead. They will not only address your bowel disease but also help you regain your health.