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This 6 week course will provide education to help you figure out your digestive system profile, re-establish the connection between your brain and belly, re-learn how to eat and how to choose foods that are right for your digestive type so that you can be free from bad breath, gas, bloating, stomach pain, diarrhea or constipation. After you master the basics you will then learn how to detoxify your liver, balance your pH, restore your electrolyte balance, clear your home from products that are toxic to you and your digestive system. Then you'll move on to advanced topics from digestive function testing, to killing of non-beneficial microbes and the connection between hormones and gut function. This course is complete with lecture videos, pdfs, menu planning tips, meal planning videos, progress checklists and quizzes to make sure you are on the right track for success.
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|Section 1: Get to Know Your Gut|
The goal of this course is to provide education to help you figure out your digestive system profile, re-establish the connection between your brain and belly, re-learn how to eat and how to choose foods that are right for your digestive type. After you master the basics you will then learn how to detoxify your liver, balance your pH, restore your electrolyte balance, clear your home from products that are toxic to you and your digestive system.
|Quiz 1||3 questions|
This quiz will get you started on learning more about to connect with your digestive system and pay more attention to it's signals.
Getting Started - Read This First!Preview
In this section you will be introduced to your digestive system and all
Ok it's cheesy but I want you to start to open the communication lines between yourself and your digestive system. Listening and learning your digestive system's signals is critical. In this section I introduce you to your belly and start the communication process. We will re-visit it again at the end of the course as this section is vital to maintaining a healthy belly.
Eating is an art and most of us have forgotten how to truly eat. In this section I describe how to slow down and focus on eating.
|Section 2: How to Eat to Heal the Gut|
Ever heard that saying "you are what you eat"? I like to think of it as "you reflect what you eat". If you fuel your body poorly it won't perform optimally. Fuel it high quality food and you'll get optimal performance.
The best way to embark on cleaning up your digestive system is to write down what you are eating for a week. Survey your food, timing of the food, cravings, moods, bowel movements (yes I said it and how they look too), also note how you feel eating certain foods. Note how you feel each morning upon waking and when you go to bed. Try out the basic food journal I've created to help you or use an app like My Fitness Pal. My printable pdf includes 9 full days of journal space to become more familiar with what you are eating and how it affects your belly. This is the first of a few exercises to get know your digestive system better as you will be working to think about how foods affect your digestive system and your mind as you work through this course.
It's time to write down what you are eating to become more familiar with your digestive system and how it tolerates certain foods.
#1 Watch the video on how to fill out the food journal - make sure you note the following:
- time of meals
- what you ate and portions
- what your digestive system is up to and bowel movements - timing and what they look like
- moods in relation to foods - before and after
The journals are key for knowing what's going on with your digestive system and tracking progress.
#2 Start working on planning your meals based on the components of a balanced meal. Being prepared and having a game plan keeps you from diverting to toxic foods.
#3 Rotating foods helps prevent food boredom and prevents food sensitivities from developing.
#4 Read though the information on the toxic items in your home and start kicking those out of your life!
The first step in healing up your digestive system is clearing out all the foods that cause irritation. Read the clean eating resource guide and follow the guidelines for a month. There's also a 5 week menu plan complete with shopping lists to aid you in planning out your meals should you need some ideas. Then, after one month, if you are feeling better you can add in foods one at a time to see how your digestive system reacts.
In the meantime check out the Fresh Food Mindset video, a DIY
Sometimes it's worth it to avoid the most irritating foods out there to see if your digestion improves. In this video I discuss the foods that are the most common digestive irritants. It's always a good idea to avoid these foods for at least 2 weeks, with a month being ideal then slowly add them back in to see how you respond.
We all have different reasons for why things went haywire with our digestive system. Figuring out your individual gut profile is key to understanding how to manage and repair it's malfunctions. Below is a list of the types of gut profiles. See which one you fit into and we'll use it to help you fix your gut.
Stressed Out Profile:
You've been under a lot of stress for the last few months, years or even a decade. You're digestive system responds to stressors such as traveling or rushing to get to work by becoming constipated. Sometimes you do not go for days at a time. The stools may be hard to pass, dry, small and look like small rocks in the toilet. You're set off easy, irritable, angry, frustrated, depressed and moody a lot of the time. You become bloated and gassy shortly after eating, you may over eat often and may have burping and heart burn as well. Coffee might be a staple in your life to ensure you have a morning bowel movement.
You're stressed and you get instant diarrhea. Emotional distress causes pain and loose stools. A lot of foods seem to irritate your digestive system. You have pain with bowel movements as well as with movements associated with digestion. You have to know where bathrooms are at all times as your digestive system is unpredictable. If you have a bad gut day you are fatigued. You avoid social situations to not have to deal with digestive issues. Your digestive system is very noisy and embarrassing. Your skin may be dry and itchy, especially when pollen counts are high and in the winter.
You struggle to get up in the morning and continue to be tired all day or you have fluctuations in energy with some serious drops during the day. Eating makes you sleepy. You feel bloated quickly after eating and you may have heart burn. You may struggle with looser stools or constipation. You get catch colds easily. Your nails may be cracking and peeling easy, your skin is dull with wrinkles and you are losing muscle tone. You may be depressed, worrying a lot, fearful or apathetic. You may feel cold internally and you may have swelling in your lower legs or ankles. You may have noticed that you are becoming more and more intolerant of certain foods. You have gas and bloating that comes on later in the day that makes you wish you were on your couch with your sweat pants on.
You struggle to wade through a brain fog in the morning and it lifts a bit but continues throughout the day. You crave sweets, fruit and carbs and it is hard to say no to these gems despite the bloat and/or gas that results from consuming these foods. You might have difficulty losing weight and your tongue is coated with a thick white coating when you wake up in the morning before your brush it. You are prone to fungal infections such as athlete's foot, skin yeast infections and ladies may have vaginal yeast infections frequently or as soon as they take an antibiotic. You may have nasal congestion and chronic sinus infections. You may have headaches, extreme fatigue and suffer from chronic joint and muscle pain. You might also have acne, psoriasis, eczema or dry skin.
You eat whatever food is available no matter the ingredients and do not consume a lot of fresh fruits and veggies. You run on coffee, fast food, soda and sweets by day and drink alcohol at night. You take a variety of medications depending on what ails you combined with those you have been prescribed to take on a regular basis. You have tums on standby and laxatives for when things get really bad. You might fluctuate between constipation and diarrhea, gas and bloating are normal as is burping. You work in a stressful environment and may have eczema, psoriasis or acne that's increasing as time goes on.
Ever since Mom stopped feeding us we have been on our own to figure out how many times to chew and how to eat. We've likely learned bad habits from family members, friends or our lifestyle has messed with our ability to slow down to eat, rest and digest. This video describes the steps critical to teaching yourself how to eat. Try this out before each meal and keep it up. Remember it takes 21 days to create a habit!
INTRODUCTION TO MEAL PLANNING
1) What kinds of foods do you like?What types of ethnic foods do you like, what do you feel like? Italian, Greek, Mexican, Indian, Asian, Thai, American
2) Look at cookbooks, websites and check out your personal collection of recipes – find recipes that you like…store them either online or on your computer in files such as veggies, meat, fish, poultry, grains; if they are a mix of grains and veggies file under a specific category; salads; desserts under their own…then break it down into breakfast, lunch, brunch and dinner options; if there are veggie sides that you think pair well with certain meat dishes then put those together in a file named “meals”
3) Each meal should have:
If the recipe is lacking one of the above components – make adjustments
If the recipe calls for breading add in raw almond, pistachio, pecan, cashew or hazelnut flour vs regular flour or bread crumbs; ground flax, chia, sesame or sunflower seeds are other options
Always consider adding in more veggies to recipes
Use seed and nut flours to make bread and crackers
4) Remember that you could have breakfast foods for dinner and dinner for breakfast – mix it up keep it fresh!
5) Consider making folders that include seasonal meals – summer, fall, winter, spring meals – check out this website for lists of foods in your area - http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/seasonalcooking/farmtotable/seasonalingredientmap, eatwild.com
6) Consider making folders that include weather meals – cold day, rainy day, sizzling hot day meals – ex: cold day stews, rainy day soups, hot day salads or grilled meals
7) Get out a calendar or make one on the computer
8) Decide what type of meal planning game plan you want 5-6 small meals or 3 larger meals with 2 snacks then pick a breakfast time and then plan for a meal or snack every 3-4 hours ending meals 3-4 hours before you plan to go to bed
9) Look at the weather for the week – is it going to be rainy, hot, cold, snowy?Then start filling in meals that sound good (don’t forget if you have family members or company coming over take into consideration or involve them in the meal preference planning) – make sure that you have your recipes labeled well so that you can find them easily to make your shopping list
10) See what is on sale at your local grocery store and tailor meals to sales; typically foods that are in season are cheaper – refer to the website above in #5.Substitute in veggies that are on sale for those in original recipes or use recipes with the veggies or fruits that are on sale.Also look at what coupons that you have at home as well.
11) Once you have filled in the calendar then take out a piece of paper or make a list on your computer of all of the ingredients needed for the recipes you have chosen (some websites such as allrecipes.com let you store recipes on their site and generate shopping lists for you)
12) Once you have your shopping list check in your pantry to see what you have already or use the menu-planner app to keep track of your pantry
13) Try out the following websites and mobile apps to help you plan
14) Don’t forget to allow for leftovers from
Here are some recipes to gets you started in this course that are very simple. The meals are easy to prepare and are whole foods based meals. Remember that these recipes are a guideline and you may need more food or feel like less food than this plan offers and that is ok. If you do not typically eat snacks that is ok they are here for those folks that are eating junk foods and need the snacks to help stabilize their blood sugar till they can transition to a more stable way of eating. If you are not able to cook well now's a good time to try it out! Say you travel too much to prepare meals, that's fine use the "Fresh Food Mindset" and "Dining Out" guides in this course to help you choose better options when out and about. Keep in mind that the meal plan can be modified based on your gut profile. Using a menu plan to get you started helps in the transition of forming healthy gut habits.
Use the following adjustments to help you obtain optimal results in this course.
Overpopulated Gut, Toxic Gut, & Stressed Gut Profiles- follow the recipes as they are written
Sensitive & Fatigued Gut Profiles - omit all nightshades (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, eggplant) and substitute with tomato for butternut squash, cherries sub in nicely too or add in blanched, steamed or roasted veggies for your meals or snacks with tomatoes or peppers. Roasted beets, zucchini, parsnips, squash, bok choy and asparagus are nice options. Avoid high histamine foods as well - olives (olive oil is ok), avocado, almonds, cashews, sausages, bacon, shellfish. See the handout for histamines in module 5 - Fine Tune.
We live in a fast paced environment that moves a lot faster than our
|Quiz 2||4 questions|
This quiz tests your knowledge of what's happening in your digestive system.
|Section 3: System Clean Up|
It's not enough to eat clean these days as we also have toxic hormone
It's time to clear the slate. It's best to start with the liver because if it's cleared out then the rest of the detoxing will be a breeze. Get started incorporating the items on the liver foods and tonics list plus consider trying out the detox plan too. Poisoned profile folks, the 14 day detox plan is key for you to get optimal results. When clearing out one must balance the hydration and electrolytes. Electrolytes - sodium, potassium, chloride and magnesium are key for proper nervous system function and gut signalling.
How exactly do these things balance the pH? Well ...think of it this
All too often we consume way too much refined sugar and high fructose corn syrup which are toxic to our bodies. Having a little sweetener in your life is not a crime it's just key to make sure that you keep the amount in check.
Another great way to clean out the system is to balance the pH as consuming fatty junk foods and too many meats makes us acidic. Being acidic leads to aches, pains and total body inflammation. By consuming alkaline foods you will help to de-inflame your body and reduce aches and pains.
Once you have the liver clearing out toxins, you're consuming electrolytes daily and properly hydrating it's time to sweep the gut lining clean. Kill off those bugs and kick them out. Don't start it before the liver foods are on board for at least a week. Then start in on the bug kill.
Here's the game plan:
1) Liver clear out - 2 weeks straight of daily liver foods and tonics then 4 days a week
2) Electrolytes and Hydration - keep up with it daily
3) Keep the sweeteners in check
4) Daily alkalinizing foods
5) After one week of clearing out the liver start on the bug kill if you desire
If you are in the overpopulated gut profile department you would have started killing off the bugs by week 2 no matter what.
To get the most out of your digestive system your detoxification system must also be running optimally. I recommend focusing on getting in key liver clearing foods and herbs while you are eating clean. That way your body can effectively manage the toxins produced when you have the "die off" effect of the yeast and non-beneficial bacteria.
2-3 cups of any of the following a day minimum – even better if one cup at each meal:
Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprouts, bok choy, kohlrabi; carrots, beets, Artichoke, celery, unpeeled cucumber, winter squash, pumpkin, pumpkin seeds, dark leafy greens (spinach, kale, chard, collard greens and watercress); lotus root, burdock root
LOTUS/BURDOCK ROOT SAUTE – SUNDAY NIGHT MEAL to get the liver set for the week!
1 tbsp of olive or sesame oil
2 cups of sliced peeled lotus root (Asian markets)
1 cup of peeled and diced burdock root (Asian markets)
2 cups nappa cabbage or bok choy
1 tbsp tamari (gluten free) soy sauce (or coconut aminos)
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp raw honey
½ tsp salt
¼ cup black sesame seeds
Add oil to a pan and warm for 5 minutes on medium heat.Add lotus, burdock and cabbage.When the vegetables have softened (15 minutes or so) add tamari, vinegar honey, salt and pepper.Mix well.Try the flavor – add additional of the above soy sauce, honey or salt and pepper to taste.Top with black sesame seeds and serve.
1-2 tbsp maximum: lemon or lime juice with rind soaked in water or boiled in a tea
Unrefined sesame, olive (cold expeller pressed oil) or coconut oil – moderate use as a dressing or cooking oil – 2 tbsp a day maximum
Olive/Sunflower oil – medium heat
Sesame oil – medium to high heat
Virgin Coconut Oil – medium to high heat – 1 tbsp maximum a day
Herbs: parsley (1-2 tbsp fresh); cilantro (1-2 tbsp fresh detoxification); mint 1-2 tbsp fresh cooling and detoxifying
Fruit: Berries (1 cup a day), Green Apple, Orange
Seeds/Nuts: Walnuts (10 a day), Black Sesame Seeds (1/4 cup a day), pumpkin seeds ¼ cup a day
Hawaiian Spirulina – 1 tbsp a day (Marlene’s Market – Nutrex Brand is best)
Seaweeds – 1 cup a day (consider seaweed salad from sushi restaurants)
|Quiz 3||3 questions|
This quiz tests your knowledge of what's lurking in your environment ready to mess with your digestion!
|Section 4: Digestive Aids|
Two must have additions to your life if you want to poop like a champ. I break down how much fiber you need and how to get it in effectively. Then I will walk you through a foam rolling protocol as well as other tricks to get the digestive system moving.
Our liver works hard to clear toxins out of the body and produce bile
Hormones play a huge role in digestive function. From estrogen to progesterone and thyroid hormones they all can mess with digestion when out of balance. Listen to the main lecture then explore all the resources below to see if hormonal imbalances may also be affecting your digestion.
To move digested food through the gut we have to have sufficient
Raw coconut water, lemon or lime water, mineral water and filtered water are critical to your digestive system function.
A base hydration of 1/2 your weight in ounces daily is recommended. Increase from there if you are working up a sweat during the day or it's hot out.
Drinking ice water, frozen smoothies and eating raw foods are damaging to the digestive system. Think of it this way...if you put ice on your skin what happens? Well the same ice cold things that numb your skin numb your digestive system and reduce the amount of enzymes and stomach acid that are released in addition to preventing signalling mechanisms from being released. To ensure your digestion is optimal it's recommended that foods and drinks be consumed at room temperature. Foods should be warmed or cooked (sauteed, grilled, stir fried, blanched, or steamed). Keep an eye on the temperatures of your foods and note how they affect your digestion.
Electrolytes are key for gut signaling mechanisms don't forget to
add these in as a part of your daily routine, especially if you are
The key to the healthiest digestion in the universe is having a bullet proof gut lining! This section will help you to keep it strong as preventing a leaky gut prevents chronic sinus conditions, body pain, thyroid and adrenal conditions as well as autoimmune conditions. 70% of your immune system is in your gut and 95% of the serotonin production in the body happens in the gut. The key to the fountain of youth is keeping your gut healthy and this is the place to start.
The most effective way to repair the gut lining is to employ the following supplements.
Collagen Protein – Vital Collagen – 2 scoops a day – links the cells together
L-Glutamine – Pure Encapsulations – 3 grams a day – links the cells together (for vegans and those who are not using collagen due to allergy concerns)
Licorice Root – Puts a band aid over the healing cells – Integrative Therapeutics – Rhizinate Chewables Fructose Free or Douglas Labs Licorice Capsules
Zinc Carnosine – Integrative Therapeutics - if diarrhea is a concern
No gut restoration plan is complete without a good scrubbing of the intestinal lining. In this section I discuss sweeping and scrubbing agents such as nano silver, n-acetyl cysteine and plant enzymes. These items are known to grab up residual items hanging out in the digestive system as well as shred through biofilms, a layer of bacteria stuck to your digestive system lining. Nano silver pokes holes in the thick film that adhere bacteria to the gut wall, while plant enzymes such as glucoamylase and hemicellulase dissolve the adhesive film. N-acetyl cysteine prevents non-beneficial bacteria from forming their adhesive film. Cleaning out the digestive system lining is much like getting weeds out of your lawn. We want to disrupt the microbial population of the gut lining to get out those "weeds" and repopulate with the good stuff. Next step is the "turf builder" the food that allows those beneficial bacteria to thrive!
Learn what supplements are key for disrupting the biofilms, how much to take and how to integrate them with the herbal antimicrobial formulas.
Start the biofilm sweep and the bug kill at the same time.
To clean out the bad bugs you have to use herbs that are considered herbal antimicrobials. There are a few products that I highly recommend due to the mix of herbs in the formulas Biocidin, GI MicrobX, Berberines, Oregano and Thyme oil. I also recommend drinking Pau D'Arco tea which is highly recommended to kill yeast overgrowth.
#1) I recommend getting started with a lactobacillus based probiotic as that is the probiotic that is struggles to survive when the gut lining is irritated. If you are struggling with your weight, the Lactobacillus rhamnosus species has been linked to being the best for aiding in weight loss.
#2) Soil Based Bacteria - these are the Bacillus species probiotics with Bacillus subtilis and coagulans as the star players here.
#3) Saccharomyces boulardii - the yeast found on litchi fruit that is used in Asia to cure diarrhea. It has also been found to kill Candida albicans (famous bug that causes systemic yeast infections), increase digestive enzyme effectiveness and resolve acne.
#4) Repeat the Lactobacillus family, take a month off and go to soil based or fermented foods.
It's time now to re-introduce those irritating foods and see how you do. Watch the video and use my guide to help you during the process.
|Quiz 4||5 questions|
Test your knowledge on what digestive issues can be helped with certain digestive aids.
|Section 5: Advanced Considerations for Gut Function|
Sometimes all the changes in the diet and lifestyle do not yield optimal digestion due to other factors that may be interfering with your digestive function. Here's a list of the most common tests out there to determine the source of your digestive issues.
Stool Testing – Take a look at the colon - GI Effects – Genova Diagnostics - gdx.net
Breath Testing – hydrogen and methane to rule out SIBO (small intestine bowel overgrowth) – intestinal evaluation- Commonwealth Labs
NutrEval Testing – Genova (gdx.net) – take a look at metabolism of nutrients and imbalances in the entire body
Food Allergy Testing – Alcat, Genova, Diagnostechs
Hormone Evaluation – Labrix.com or ZRT – saliva testing – rule out stress or a hormone imbalance as the cause of your digestive issues
Neurotransmitters – Labrix.com – urine testing – rule out serotonin or an overactive nervous system causing your issues.
This lecture gives you the protocol and products commonly used to kill non-beneficial bacteria, yeast and parasites that linger in your gut. If you experience extreme gas and bloating so much that by the end of the day you want to run home and put on sweat pants you might have overgrowth of non-beneficial bacteria or yeast in the gut. If you get bloated or have an increase in gas after a carbohydrate rich or sugary meal you may need to knock down some of the bad bugs in the gut. Don't forget to listen to the biofilm sweep lecture below as it outlines the critical components in addition to the bug killing supplements needed to effectively kill non-beneficial gut microbes.
Here we are at the end of the course.
You’ve cleared out your liver and removed toxins from your life, your eating better and wiser plus you’re communicating better with your belly how do you feel?
I bet your digestion has improved and you’re feeling pretty good. If there’s still some occasional digestive distress or if you have brain fog, you’re fatigued, itchy, have body aches and pains those symptoms are signs of a leaky gut with microbial overgrowth and possible hormonal imbalances. I recommend that you go get some testing from the resources I noted to help with your advanced gut condition. Most of the human population has been found to have imbalances of non-beneficial bacteria that have been linked to digestive disorders, overeating, obesity and cancer. In order to prevent severe illness, autoimmune conditions as well as treat them it’s critical to balance the good bacteria that live on your digestive system lining. Those good bacteria are vital for proper digestion of food, absorption of vitamins and minerals and for gut-brain-endocrine signaling processes. I recommend taking the steps to clear out the bad bugs again, replenish the good ones, and re-feeding them while maintaining the gut lining repair. I'm here to help you obtain optimal health so you can continue to live pain free with a sharp mind, strong body in good spirits for years to come! Don't be a stranger stop by my website doctorjkrause.com and check out my blogs to help you further in your gut trouble shooting!
Jannine Krause, ND, is a naturopathic doctor, acupuncturist and foodie with training from Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington. Dr. Krause integrates Traditional Chinese Medicine with functional medicine principles to help people determine the root cause of their problems so that they can regain their health to age gracefully with a strong body, glowing skin and a sharp mind. And she starts sleuthing out health problems by fixing the digestive system first as she believes Hippocrates was right - all disease does start in the gut! Dr. Krause is convinced aging doesn't have to suck and she's on a mission to help people slow down the aging process and prevent age related conditions!