Power of probiotics

Your gut and mind are connected believe it or not. I feel many people don’t associate the two as being one really. Over the years and through extreme periods of stress. I have found that is when my colon has been at its worst.

First example being nursing school. I’m greatful for the education, but at the time it was hell. I recall getting my first ticket when I was driving in Georgia where I went to college. It was like imediately when I saw the blue lights flashing behind me my stomach didn’t have to ask if it should hurt, it just imediately did. This is an example of how stress can manifest in bowel disorders unconsciously. Even though we aren’t linking the issues or thoughts that run through our minds all day everyday to the kind of bowel patterns we have. I promise you. There is a connection.

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I have been battling this disease I will call it since I was 19 years old. Today I was scrolling through the news feed on Facebook  and saw someone  trying to make money by sucking people into believing they have the cure for irritable bowel disorders by paying money to buy their whatever. It mentioned a bacterial overgrowth which perhaps is a factor. However, I have to track it back again to what we are putting in our colons everyday. How did the bacterial overgrowth happen???? Not by eating fresh fruits and vegetables I bet. People are failing to see that the fast food that you eat quickly because your in a hurry, it doesn’t leave you quickly. It manifests causing bloating, flatulance, diarrhea, constipation, headaches, and even nausea. Why?  The foods that are being cooked in these fast food restaurants are are cooked in highly saturated fats because it is cheaper. They are full of chemicals which our bodies are not equipped to handle. When the stomach and gut can’t easily digest something such as dairy, it produces more and more mucous to try to neutralize the acid these foods are causing. As a nurse I wouldn’t be afraid to say 75 percent of people are on or have taken some form of  antacid or proton pump inhibitors for their reflux by the age 40. Many people take these meds for so many years; they mask other symptoms of more serious problems such as stomach cancers, esophageal cancer, and pancreatic cancers. Doctors don’t seem to hesitate to prescribe Prevacid or protonix for someone when they mention recurrent reflux or heartburn. I just encourage people to start educating yourself about what your eating and how it is affecting your digestion. The foods we eat affect our skin and hair as well. I have noticed that when my daughter eats lunch at school she gets acne on her forehead. If I am a “good mom” ha and fix her lunch for a week or so the acne improves. I see a correlation there and I know what is being fed to the children in schools is not healthy. The poor children certainly can’t drink adequate amounts of water because god forbid they have to use the restroom! There is a plethora of information online and of course that does not mean it is all true or valid. I believe you have to find what works for you and sometimes what others are doing will resonate with you and you will find positive change in incorporating some of their daily food habits.

I feel that probiotics are absolutely essential for anyone who has bowel issues. I know that our food is deficient in necessary probiotics and nutrients today. If you think about the average fast food diet it is fiberless.  Fiber is the key to a colons success. First you have to be able to clean out the mucous and debris essentially that is not needed. If you are never eating foods that contain cellulose or fiber how can you do that? When you drink a lot of milk or other forms of dairy , it is contributing to the mucous production and not in the cleansing that is necessary to have a happy colon. For a time I used probiotics on and off and my colon was on and off, but I find when I take a probiotic daily or even twice a day depending on the strength there is a distinct difference in regularity there. I talk to some people that say they take probiotics, but if they are eating processed foods, grease; high fat diets it’s like swimming upstream for the probiotic. It has to fight even harder to make any notable difference in the gut. It’s like if you clean all your drawers out you are organized! You know where all your socks are and perhaps your favorite shirt. When everything is a mess good luck finding what you need. Same thing with our body it’s always craving balance and when it’s out of balance it will manifest in our moods, bowel habits, and diseases. Some people have wiped out their immune systems which I feel originate as well in the gut by taking a lot of antibiotics over the course of their lives. Antibiotics serve a great purpose, but when your taking them all the time your murdering your colons normal flora and if you are not replenishing it with pre-biotics or probiotics you are going to find yourself in trouble. I see people like this, it is a vicious cycle. They are constantly sick and have no idea why. Markus Rothkranz talks about prebiotics in a video on You Tube. Check it out, I found it to be very informative.

The thing about probiotics is they are everywhere now. You can buy them online, at drug stores, Whole Foods, and other grocery stores. I try to buy ones that are refrigerated with the hope they still have active live cultures in them. Also some may disagree, but sauerkraut has worked amazingly for me. I don’t mean the kind you buy in the can. I mean raw sauerkraut. This is the brand I use and I love it. I eat it cold on my salad with avocado and its really good. This is just another way to introduce probiotics to the gut.

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Also I may have mentioned in another blog that coconut kefir is awesome!! I feel so good when I eat it. No dairy or processed sugars like we see in yogurt. Here is a picture of the brand I have been using.

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I purchase it from Whole Foods.  It’s full of live cultures that will make your gut happy!! Just a few things to try.

One more thing, please check out Anthony William, the Medical Medium. His book and now second book  have so much information about various health disorders and the foods that we can choose to eat to help heal our bodies. I find bananas are awesome for colitis. I eat at least two everyday in my smoothies.  I’m always happy to answer any questions in regards to Ulcerative Colitis.  I feel our diet has contributed greatly to the demise of our gut health and thats why when I see people pushing “magic new medicines” to “heal” these disorders. I know that no medicine alone is going to do that.  Until we start putting living foods in the gut it will continue to fight for life itself. IMG_0633

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Alone in the parallel reality that I lead I am often lost wondering. Im wondering what happened to the life we all once knew, the life that was simple and full of nature. Things in nature unfold so naturally and beautifully just as each of our lives should. There is no resistance for a flower to bloom or the sun to rise each day. Unfortunately man has made earth almost unbearable in my opinion especially for those who can see beyond the vail and who can feel beyond the falseness here. 

I have been on this vegan journey I realize for a little while now, like over 3 years. No day is the same and each day I am learning more from other people that are succeeding at it. I still feel that it is a progression and that each person has to progress at their own pace and it has to feel right to them. With that said the deeper I go into the realization that what we are being fed as a society is killing us. I can’t help but want others to awaken to the truth of nature and the truth of things that are much more simple yet healthy. I went this morning and I took my recyclables to the dump near me. With that I see how much plastic I generate and I need to cut back. When I look back though at how I used to just throw every plastic bottle in the regular garbage I understand that I was contributing to the already too much trash problem in the world. I encourage everyone to try to recycle. It is good for the planet and it just makes you feel good knowing that it is going to be re used and not waisted. I purchased some stainless steel straws not too long ago off of Amazon. My daughter and I used them for our smoothies and it is so much better than using 14 or more plastic ones a week.IMG_0317I have been seeing so many people that are coming to the awareness that a plant based diet is honestly the best and most beneficial for our health. On Instagram I follow several people that are making this diet work with children and that inspires me.

Yesterday at work, I was talking to a co worker of mine and we got on the topic of bacon. Everyone at work is like..”Kristen is vegan” it’s almost like “Kristen is an alien” thats how it feels sometimes lol . Anyways he stated that he loves bacon and CAN’T give it up. Which I do feel it is a choice and who am I to tell anyone how to eat. With that said though he in turn said that he would like to own a mini pig for a pet and at that point it just lit a fire in me. He also said “but I would not eat him.” It just brings me to the point that there is such a huge disconnect between what we love and what we put in our mouth. When we think of pigs as just someone else’s animal that is going to be slaughtered and we have no emotional connection to them its “Ok” if they get slaughtered and put on our plate. When we see the pig as something we hold and own and feed, then its “NOT” okay to hurt or kill the pig. It is just interesting to me and I can understand it in some ways because I used to eat the bacon as well and not identify with where it came from or even want to know. It is obviously easier to be in denial than in truth. I know the majority of the world could not even imagine eating their dog or cat right?? but people in China and other places eat those animals and see nothing wrong with it.  It is easier for the alcoholic to take a drink than to resist it. It is easier for the smoker to buy the pack of cigarettes instead of resist it. It is easier for us to pull into the drive through than to cook something healthy at home. How do we as a society get out of this stupor? How do we connect the dots that we are all one.  I read comments on Facebook that people see themselves as significantly higher beings than cows or pigs. The reason for this in my opinion is we have been conditioned to believe that is true by our parents, grandparents and their elders. It is a pattern!!! We are victims of so many unconscious patterns that affect us in everything that we do. The more aware you become of that the harder it seems life is to navigate. It’s like you start feeling very alone. You start feeling like nothing is right and you just want to run away but don’t know where to run. The worst one is that nobody understands you. It is very isolating. I think having a support system is extremely important. I however don’t really have that here except for my daughter and I am greatly blessed that she is so caring toward animals and others. She is supportive of what I want to do and what I eat. I never make her eat anything thats vegan unless she really wants to. I give her the choice. Sometimes she choses the chicken or whatever and that is fine. I feel in time and as she matures she will make her own connections and I’m proud of the ones that she is already making on her own. 

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I just felt compelled to write about this because I have watched Cowspiracy on Netlix recently and some of the other health documentaries. I encourage everyone to watch those documentaries if you have Netflix.

IMG_0476It is one way of bridging the gap by seeing what is happening in the world and just how the food industry is out for the almighty dollar and does not care about us as a whole. Look at how agriculture is killing our rainforest and taking away so much land each year. It is not necessary for our survival which many are now understanding. We don’t need the meat or the dairy to thrive. We need plant protein, nuts, nut milks, seeds, fruits and vegetables. There is enough protein in that to survive. Some lentils and beans are good, quinoa,  avocados are full of healthy fats, not saturated fats that clog up our system. I buy coconuts and yes they are expensive in Tennessee and I probably only buy a couple every month because of that. When I can put them in my diet I do! I recently purchased some coconut Kefir at whole foods. With colitis anytime you can put healthy probiotics in your gut I recommend it. I just feel good when I eat it and no it doesn’t taste awesome to me, but It is awesome for your gut flora. I know I can’t tell other people how to lead their lives but we are failing miserably here and we have to somehow make the changes necessary for our planet to survive for not only us but our children. In one of the documentaries I watched. It said that If all of the trees and resources we have went away we would all die, but if we went away the earth, wildlife, trees, fruits, etc would continue to flourish. That says something doesn’t it. We are slowly killing this earth and it is painful when I see that on every square inch of available land, they are building subdivisions and shopping malls, etc. That has to make people see that someday our wild life is going to not exist. Our rain forests and plants are our oxygen. I don’t know anyone that can live without it.  As I mentioned the denial is just easier. It’s easier to be excited for the new grocery store or mall that is coming instead of think about what is being lost. I just pray for more compassion and empathy on this earth. I want to make a difference in any way that I can and most days I feel like I’m not cutting it. How can we be the change here??

Recycle, Utilize Farmers markets, buy organic when you can, spay and neuter pets, be kind to one another, educate yourself ,make connection and quality time important with your children, listen..…. the list goes on.. what is important to you??

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