Saturday, 30 March 2013
An ulcer is an inflammatory condition in the lining of the stomach causing pain and burning while the stomach is empty, or while food is being digested. Ulcers have a tendency to bleed. Blood can be observed in the stool as being dark in colour. Ulcers can cause haemorrhaging to such an extent that a person could possibly bleed to death.
Ulcers are caused in many ways, as follows: improper food combining; the overproduction of hydrochloric acid which may erode the stomach lining; the overproduction of the enzyme pepsin; the over-ingestion of alcohol and tobacco products; the taking of aspirin regularly; not chewing food properly thereby preventing saliva to mix with food to aid digestion.
Conventional treatments for ulcers such as drugs, surgery, the provision of antacids do not work because they only address the symptoms and not the underlying cause of the problem. It is therefore best to look at diet, food supplements and what other measures can be taken to treat an ulcer, or to lessen the chances of developing one in the first instance.
Some doctors impose a bland diet on their patients suffering from ulcers which is counterproductive as they still need to get the daily nutrients they require from their food despite this condition. If you suffer from an ulcer, it is best to eat smaller meals at each sitting on a more regular basis than three large meals per day. Six meals per day at 2-3 hour intervals would be ideal. Avoid fasting if you suffer from an ulcer.
As poor food combining can cause an ulcer, avoid combining proteins and starches in the one meal. As food goes through the pyloric valve (the exit from the stomach) it becomes confused if partially digested proteins and carbohydrates are present at the same time. It is therefore not recommended that you eat meat or chicken with potatoes in the same meal, but they can be eaten separately.
The diet should be high in fibre which helps food to travel though the digestive system. Fibre is also necessary to encourage regular bowel movements. A patient with an ulcer should be encouraged to eat cooked vegetables several times a day. Sweet fruits, millet, buckwheat, coconut, almonds, avocado, sprouted grains and seeds are also recommended. Raw vegetables should be discouraged as they are difficult to digest. Both potato juice and cabbage juice are good for people with ulcers as they accelerate the healing process. Drinking distilled water can help reduce pain.
Herbs good for ulcer sufferers, for the reasons stated, are as follows: peppermint oil aids the healing of inflammatory conditions; licorice improves mucous in the digestive tract; cayenne red pepper aids digestion and stimulates blood flow; chickweed helps digest fatty substances and encourages the helpful production of stomach mucous; and golden seal alleviates internal bleeding.
Food supplements can also be used effectively to help with ulcers. Vitamin E, 1,000 IU once daily, slows down inflammatory conditions. Zinc Picolinate, 50mg twice daily, aids the healing of ulcers. Vitamin A in the form of fish liver oil, 25,000 IU once daily, helps repair tissue.
As ulcers arise from the over acidity of the body, the following foods and drinks should be avoided: dairy products, meats, flour products, chocolate, sweets, eggs, gains, fizzy drinks, and citrus fruits. All fried foods should be avoided. The more alkaline the overall food intake is the better.
Some other adjunctive measures you can take if you suffer with ulcers are as follows: if you are a smoker, it is best to give it up because it interferes with the body’s reaction to food; alcohol intake should be limited to two units per day; it is best to either avoid stress altogether, or take positive steps to limit its impact on your life.
Sunday, 10 March 2013
If food enters the body without being properly digested, your immune system will produce antibodies to attack that particular food as if it were a threat to the body, and thereby cause a reaction. Antibodies trigger the release of histamines, which in turn cause gastrointestinal, respiratory and skin problems. Reactions to foods eaten can occur from a few minutes to a few hours after they have been consumed.
The most common food allergies are to eggs, milk, peanuts, wheat, potato, carrots, celery, chocolate, soft drinks, corn flakes, sugar and fish such as cod, trout and plaice. Symptoms of a food allergy can include the following: itching; redness; burning sensations; vomiting accompanied by diarrhoea; respiratory problems such as asthma; sudden drop in blood pressure; and suffocation. About 15% of the public suffer some form of food allergy.
Prescription drugs such as antihistamines, cortisone or decongestants in the treatment of food allergies are ineffective, and all have serious side effects. As an allergy is a digestive problem, it is important that your food is broken down into the smallest particles prior to consumption in order to facilitate proper digestion.
Consuming products containing simple sugars should be avoided if at all possible. Simple sugars cause blood sugar levels to fluctuate rapidly, and cause hyperglycemia temporarily in the body, necessitating the release of insulin to counter this condition. The release of insulin lowers blood sugar levels rapidly resulting in hypoglycemia, which heightens the craving for more sugar. This vicious circle can be the cause of food allergies, resulting from the fermentation of excess sugars in the intestines.
Lots of modern processed foods have additives containing chemicals, while others are made up largely of synthetic substances. A person can easily develop an allergic reaction to these inputs into food. Therefore pay attention to food labelling in order to establish that the packaged food you are purchasing contains mainly natural food. Avoid any synthetic foods.
Eggs can be a problem if they are from hens that have been fed antibiotics and other medications in order to prevent disease. Farmed fish are also fed manufactured substances in order to prevent afflictions, such as lice, they would not normally suffer in the open ocean. It is wise therefore to pay attention to the source of the food you are consuming.
In order to combat food allergies it is therefore best to make whole natural foods a major part of the diet. The majority of the nutrients that you required daily should be obtained from whole grains, leafy green vegetables, eggs from free-range hens, walnuts, black radish, tomatoes, plums, prunes chicken, meat, low-fat yogurt and ocean- fish such as salmon, mackerel and tuna. If you buy processed foods, make sure you are purchasing ones that contain the largest amount of natural foods, and have received the least amount of processing by paying attention to the ingredients list which foods companies are legally obliged to put on packaging.
Manganese can help the body fight food allergies. The main food sources of manganese are whole grains, leafy green vegetables and nuts. It could also be taken as a food supplement requiring up to 10 milligrams per day. Pantothene is a food supplement that stimulates the adrenal glands to produce the body’s own cortisone. You will need to take 500mg. of it twice daily.