Tag Archives: crohn’s disease

Introduction

Could the Bacteria in Your Gut be the Key to Your Anemia?An essential part to healthy living and Paleo is making sure that you are getting the right amount of key nutrients. One such element is iron.1 Maintaining a proper balance of iron in the body is crucial to ensure the body can make red blood cells.1 Red blood cells act as oxygen carriers taking oxygen from the lungs to your body’s tissues. In cases where a shortage of iron exists, an anemia occurs. Extreme fatigue due to decreased ATP energy production from the insufficient amount of red blood cells,2 is a key symptom. Ward anemia away by including Paleo friendly food options rich in iron, such as meat, poultry, fish, spinach, and almonds.1

Healthy people naturally lose about 0.5 to 2 mg of iron daily.2 So how does the body regulate iron? Hepcidin, a hormone produced in the liver, serves as the main regulator of iron homeostasis.3 When a person consumes food rich in iron, it enters the body via the intestine. When there is iron supply depletion, the body has a symbiotic mechanism, through the release of hepcidin, which encourages iron absorption.3 The same is also seen with infections or inflammation in the body. On the other hand when iron concentration increases, the liver releases hepcidin, which inhibits absorption.3

The Research Study

Earlier research studies focused upon the mechanism of uptake through the intestinal epithelial cells. Recent research from France shows that the actual intestinal microbiota, the bacteria within the gut, may play a more meaningful role in the process.4

In a controlled study, researchers removed the intestinal microbiota from mice. In another group, the mice were later colonized with a controlled microbiota. In the germ free group, the mice had low iron supplies whereas the mice with microbiota present in the intestine exhibited high levels of iron supply, with the presence of ferritin, the iron storage protein and increased levels of ferroportin, the iron transporter protein, which distributes iron in the body.

Researches also saw that certain commensal organisms (Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron VPI-5482 and Faecalibacterium prausnitzii A2-165) and a probiotic strain (Streptococcus thermophilus LMD-9) resulted in an increase of 12-fold induction of ferritin in the colon.

Based on these results, the researchers concluded that microbiota in the intestine leads to transformation of the intestinal cells. This encourages them to allocate iron around the body and store it.

Paleo, Anemia, and Crohn’s Disease: What’s the Connection?

The study’s findings seem to suggest that the microbiota serves as part of the regulatory control process. This guides our understanding of certain iron overload diseases in addition to the iron levels in people diagnosed with gastrointestinal conditions such as inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

It is also important to connect these findings with those from a study published in Nature5 where researchers studied fecal samples from the Matses in the Amazon, one of the last hunter-gatherers communities in the world. Their samples were compared to those of a group of residents from Oklahoma, and showed the Matses’ microbiota was much more diverse. Notably present was a strain of bacteria known as Treponema which is not normally seen in civilized western populations. This bacteria is also found in other Paleolithic communities such as the Hadzas in Tanzania. Researchers further stated that this high level of microbial diversity appears to have real benefit to host populations.

Summary

Anemia is a prevalent problem seen in individuals diagnosed with Crohn’s disease due to excess gastrointestinal blood loss.6 The antibiotics that are often prescribed to combat symptoms remove microbes and impact the gut flora.6One can speculate that this could further cause iron deficiency and anemia, given the results of the earlier study on the role of microbial flora in supporting the uptake of iron. Because microbiota diversity may play a role in preventing conditions like Crohn’s diseases, what do you have to lose? Keep your gut in check by following a risk free Paleo diet – you only have your health to gain.

References

1. University of Illinois At Urbana Champaign. (2010). Dietary Sources of Iron. Retrieved Sep 29, 2015, from McKinley Health Center: //www.mckinley.illinois.edu/handouts/dietary_sources_iron.html

2. Sharp, P., & Srai, S. (2007). Molecular mechanisms involved in intestinal iron absorption. World Journal of Gastroenterology, 13(35), 4716-4724. Retrieved Sep 29, 2015, from //www.wjgnet.com/1007-9327/13/4716.pdf

3. Nemeth, E., & Ganz, T. (2006, Aug). Regulation of Iron Metabolism by Hepcidin. Annual Review of Nutrition, 26, 323-342. doi:10.1146/annurev.nutr.26.061505.111303

4. Deschemin, J., Noordine, M., Remot, A., Willemetz, A., Afif, C., Canonne-Hergaux, F., . . . Nicolas, G. (2015, Sep 14). The microbiota shifts the iron sensing of intestinal cells. The FASEB Journal. doi:10.1096/fj.15-276840

5. Obregon-Tito, A., Tito, R., Metcalf, J., Sankaranarayanan, K., Clemente, J., Ursell, L., . . . Marin-Reyes, L. (2015, March 25). Subsistence strategies in traditional societies distinguish gut microbiomes. Nature communications. doi:10.1038/ncomms7505

6. National Hematologic Diseases Information Service. (2013, August 26). Anemia of Inflammation and Chronic Disease. Retrieved Sep 30, 2015, from National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

Paleo Diet and Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Are Emulsifiers to Blame?

We are often asked whether a Paleo diet can be a promising agent for the prevention and treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases. Impaired mucosal immunity in the gastrointestinal tract has been shown to lead to this debilitating condition.1 New data suggests that common food additives, called emulsifiers, could be contributing to the development of inflammatory bowel diseases, including colitis, by disturbing the composition of intestinal microbiota.2 This research has the ability to improve the health of 1-2 million people who suffer from ulcerative colitis,3 a major risk factor for colorectal cancer.4  Let’s take a closer look of how this research could impact Paleo dieters.

What role does intestinal microbiota play in reducing inflammatory conditions?

Gut microbiota is considered to be an organ within an organ,5 and provides many important benefits, especially in metabolism and immunity. In healthy individuals, the intestines are protected via multi-layered mucus structures that cover the intestinal surface, to keep a barrier between the epithelial cells that line the intestine and both healthy and pathogenic bacteria.6  Dysfunction of the relationship between the mucosal lining and bacteria results in low-grade inflammation that has been linked to promoting adiposity and contributing to negative metabolic effects,7 which can account for the increase in obesity and metabolic syndrome rates worldwide.8,9

Are emulsifiers sneaking their way into your Paleo Diet?

Emulsifiers are common food additives that impart creaminess, improve texture, extend shelf life, and emulsify oils in many processed foods. Emulsifiers and 1600 other food additives have been considered by the FDA to be “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS). It is alarming that there are this many processed substances are added to foods regularly consumed by Americans, without fully understanding the implications of these additives.10

Current research suggest emulsifiers in particular are in fact causing physical harm.11,12,13 They are often described to be like detergent – where the molecules lead to massive bacterial overgrowth,14 damage the mucosal lining, transport bacteria across epithelial tissue,15 and are cancer promoting.16 Hopefully, this evidence will encourage the FDA to perform further analysis and alter the criteria that has previously been used to evaluate food safety. Until then, further scientific evidence indicates it is best to avoid such processed foods as they contribute to the rise of modern diseases.

Although processed foods are not a part of a true Paleo Diet, many Paleo eaters still incorporate convenience foods containing them into their diet. These foods may include chocolate, mayonnaise, coconut and almond milk products, grain-free baked goods, protein powders, as well as many personal hygiene products like toothpastes and mouthwashes. To minimize the impact on your intestinal health and overall inflammation levels, avoid the following emulsifiers in any product you buy: xanthan gum, guar gum, carrageenan, cellulose gum, polysorbate 80, and (soy) lecithin.

In addition to being void of artificial emulsifiers, the foods eaten by traditional hunter-gathers are typically lower in carbohydrate than modern diets, and have also been linked to lower levels of inflammation of the gastrointestinal microbiota. Following a Paleo diet may lead to a microbiota that is more consistent with our evolutionary ancestors, and less likely to be impacted by the chronic inflammatory conditions linked to modern diets.17

Eat like our ancestors. Eat Paleo.

 

REFERENCES

[1] Middendorp, S., and E. E. S. Nieuwenhuis. “NKT cells in mucosal immunity.”Mucosal immunology 2.5 (2009): 393-402.

[2] Chassaing, Benoit, et al. “Dietary emulsifiers impact the mouse gut microbiota promoting colitis and metabolic syndrome.” Nature 519.7541 (2015): 92-96.

[3] Colitis–Pathophysiology, Ulcerative. “Inflammatory bowel disease part I: ulcerative colitis–pathophysiology and conventional and alternative treatment options.” Alternative medicine review 8.3 (2003): 247-283.

[4] Eaden JA, Abrams KR, Mayberry JF. The risk of colorectal cancer in ulcerative colitis: a meta-analysis.Gut. 2001;48:526–535.

[5] O’Hara, Ann M., and Fergus Shanahan. “The gut flora as a forgotten organ.”EMBO reports 7.7 (2006): 688-693.

[6] Johansson, M. E. et al. The inner of the two Muc2 mucin-dependent mucus layers in colon is devoid of bacteria. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 105, 15064–15069 (2008)

[7] Bäckhed, Fredrik, et al. “The gut microbiota as an environmental factor that regulates fat storage.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 101.44 (2004): 15718-15723.

[8] Furet, Jean-Pierre, et al. “Differential Adaptation of Human Gut Microbiota to Bariatric Surgery–Induced Weight Loss Links With Metabolic and Low-Grade Inflammation Markers.” Diabetes 59.12 (2010): 3049-3057.

[9] Alberti, K. G. M. M., et al. “Harmonizing the Metabolic Syndrome A Joint Interim Statement of the International Diabetes Federation Task Force on Epidemiology and Prevention; National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; American Heart Association; World Heart Federation; International Atherosclerosis Society; and International Association for the Study of Obesity.” Circulation 120.16 (2009): 1640-1645.

[10] Winter, Ruth. A consumer’s dictionary of food additives: Descriptions in plain English of more than 12,000 ingredients both harmful and desirable found in foods. Crown Archetype, 2009.

[11] Chassaing, Benoit, et al. “Dietary emulsifiers impact the mouse gut microbiota promoting colitis and metabolic syndrome.” Nature 519.7541 (2015): 92-96.

[12] Tobacman, Joanne K. “Review of harmful gastrointestinal effects of carrageenan in animal experiments.” Environmental health perspectives 109.10 (2001): 983.

[13] Watt, J., and R. Marcus. “Harmful effects of carrageenan fed to animals.”Cancer detection and prevention 4.1-4 (1980): 129-134.

[14] Swidsinski, Alexander, et al. “Bacterial overgrowth and inflammation of small intestine after carboxymethylcellulose ingestion in genetically susceptible mice.”Inflammatory bowel diseases 15.3 (2009): 359-364.

[15] Roberts, C. L. et al. Translocation of Crohn’s disease Escherichia coli across M-cells: contrasting effects of soluble plant fibres and emulsifiers. Gut 59, 1331–1339 (2010)

[16] Tobacman, Joanne K. “Review of harmful gastrointestinal effects of carrageenan in animal experiments.” Environmental health perspectives 109.10 (2001): 983.

[17] Spreadbury, Ian. “Comparison with ancestral diets suggests dense acellular carbohydrates promote an inflammatory microbiota, and may be the primary dietary cause of leptin resistance and obesity.” Diabetes, metabolic syndrome and obesity: targets and therapy 5 (2012): 175.

Probiotics, Paleo, and Gut Health | The Paleo Diet

The gastrointestinal tract is home to some 500 different species of microorganisms. Collectively known as the gut microbiome, these microorganisms confer an array of benefits, including assisting with digestion, warding off pathogenic bacteria, training the immune system to respond only to pathogens, and synthesizing various vitamins.

The Paleo lifestyle promotes a healthy gut microbiome, but certain medical conditions warrant additional support, including natural probiotic supplements and cultured foods. The Paleo diet eliminates some cultured foods, like fermented dairy and salt-brine-pickled vegetables, but not all of them. So how can natural probiotics and cultured foods fit into a Paleo lifestyle? Which foods and supplements are most appropriate?

It is unusual to need additional support when following a Paleo regime and consuming lots of veggies, as they are the biggest fiber source. Conditions that might warrant natural probiotic supplementation according to the Cleveland Clinic include:

The strongest evidence for probiotic efficacy is for treating diarrhea, particularly among children. At least four large meta-analyses have been published regarding probiotic treatments for children suffering acute, infectious diarrhea. Despite differing probiotics being tested, different doses, and different lengths of treatments, each study shows that probiotics, along with standard rehydration therapy, decrease diarrhea symptoms.1

Regarding irritable bowel disease (IBD), the evidence for probiotic efficacy is less conclusive, but is nevertheless promising. A 2013 review published in Current Opinions in Gastroenterology determined that probiotics demonstrate considerable potential for treating IBD, but better-designed, longer-term studies are necessary.2 Furthermore, IBD probiotic treatments appear to be strain specific. In other words, certain strains are likely to be effective for certain conditions, but ineffective for others. Of the various IBD conditions, pouchitis and ulcerative colitis have thus far shown the best potential with respect to probiotic treatments, whereas the current evidence for Crohn’s disease is less promising.

The global probiotics market is expected to reach $42 billion by 2016.3 But not all probiotics are created equal. Some have been shown to be ineffective or even counterproductive.4 Viable natural probiotics should demonstrate the ability to survive transit through the gastrointestinal tract, to colonize the intestines, and should have a long shelf life.

Gut microbiome research is still in its early stages, but as the Human Gut Microbiome project and other research initiatives advance, clearer answers will surely emerge. For now, natural probiotics can effectively treat or ameliorate certain conditions.

If you are making the transition to a Paleo Diet and would like additional gut health support, supplements which improve intestinal integrity and which may reduce intestinal permeability include probiotics, prebiotics, Vitamin D3, fish oil (EPA and DHA), and Zinc.5 Dr. Cordain recommends supplementing with probiotics between 6-9 billion bacteria/day during one month, then cut down to 4-5 billion. You may also consider 4-6 grams prebiotics a day during one month (if you do not improve with 4 grams increase up to 6 grams). Then cut down to 2 grams a day.6 Speak with your qualified health practitioner to determine whether or not probiotics are appropriate for you.

For those who prefer food to supplements, try coconut yogurt, which is becoming increasingly popular. Look for products devoid of added stabilizers or sweeteners. Alternatively, you can easily make your own. Just blend 16 ounces of coconut “meat” (from young coconuts) with about 1 cup of fresh coconut water. Add the contents of two natural probiotic capsules and mix well. Allow the mixture to rest, covered by a kitchen towel or cheesecloth, for 8 to 16 hours (the fermentation goes quicker in warmer environments). Alternatively, a tablespoon of coconut oil a day is not only a good source of Medium Chain Fatty Acids, but added support for your gut.7

Christopher James Clark, B.B.A.
@nutrigrail
Nutritional Grail
www.ChristopherJamesClark.com

Christopher James Clark | The Paleo Diet TeamChristopher James Clark, B.B.A. is an award-winning writer, consultant, and chef with specialized knowledge in nutritional science and healing cuisine. He has a Business Administration degree from the University of Michigan and formerly worked as a revenue management analyst for a Fortune 100 company. For the past decade-plus, he has been designing menus, recipes, and food concepts for restaurants and spas, coaching private clients, teaching cooking workshops worldwide, and managing the kitchen for a renowned Greek yoga resort. Clark is the author of the critically acclaimed, award-winning book, Nutritional Grail.

 

REFERENCES

[1] Pham, M, Lemberg, DA, and Day, AS. (2008). Probiotics: sorting the evidence from the myths. Medical Journal of Australia, 188(5). Retrieved from https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2008/188/5/probiotics-sorting-evidence-myths

[2] Whelan, K and Quigley, EMM. (2013). Probiotics in the Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Current Opinions in Gastroenterology, 29(2). Retrieved from //www.medscape.com/viewarticle/779778

[3] Berkley Wellness. (March 2014). Probiotic Pros and Cons. Berkley, University of California. Retrieved from //www.berkeleywellness.com/supplements/other-supplements/article/probiotics-pros-and-cons

[4] Gibson, GR and Fuller, R. (2000). Aspects of in vitro and in vivo research approaches directed toward identifying probiotics and prebiotics for human use. Journal of Nutrition, 130(2S Supplement). Retrieved from //www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10721913

[5] Cordain, Loren, PhD. “Hidradenitis Suppurativa, Autoimmune Disease, and The Paleo Diet.” The Paleo Diet. The Paleo Diet, LLC, 30 Sept. 2013. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.

[6] Cordain, Loren, PhD. “Eating Paleo But Still Constipated | The Paleo Diet | Dr. Cordain.” The Paleo Diet. The Paleo Diet, LLC, 01 Dec. 2009. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.

[7] Ibid.

The Verdict on Canned Fish | The Paleo DietThe Verdict on Canned Fish Excerpt

Fish and seafood, in general, closely resemble the nutritional characteristics of humanity’s original staple food (lean game meat). These are quite high in protein, low in total fat and typically contain high levels of omega 3 fats. Given these characteristics, you should not be surprised to find that regular fish and seafood consumption is one of the best strategies you can take to improve your health.

Numerous well-controlled scientific studies have shown time and again that regular fish consumption reduces total and LDL cholesterol (the “bad” cholesterol) and triglycerides while simultaneously increasing HDL cholesterol (the “good” cholesterol). The end result of these beneficial changes in blood chemistry and heart function translates into a reduced risk of heart attack, stroke, type II diabetes and death from all causes combined. By eating fish regularly, you can significantly reduce your risk of dying from the number one killer of all Americans − heart disease.

Canned tuna is by far America’s favorite seafood, but the canning process causes a number of problems – the least of which is a loss of fresh flavor.

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If you have any questions regarding The Insider Vol 4 Issue 9 The Verdict on Canned Fish please email us at info@thepaleodiet.com

Ulcerative Colitis Remission | The Paleo Diet

Born into an Italian-American family, it was inevitable that I fall in love with food. Fresh mozzarella, homemade pasta, and a crusty piece of Italian bread were components of an average meal. But my passion for food was not limited to Italian cuisine. I used to pride myself on my pie eating and Twinkie eating contest wins. Then there was that one week I ate nachos for dinner seven days straight. And I could drink craft beer like a disturbingly large German man.

I never had a weight problem and, in fact, I never had a problem period. I thought I had an iron stomach. That was, until March 2013.

One Saturday evening I decided I needed to go to the ER for dehydration and some other alarming digestive symptoms. A grueling week later and a few tests a 25-year-old should never have to endure, I finally had a colonoscopy. My gastroenterologist diagnosed me with severe Ulcerative Colitis (pancolitis).

As soon as I woke up from anesthesia my doctor informed me I had a lifelong autoimmune disease. My colon was basically attacking itself by creating ulcers and making it impossible for me to function properly. After giving me a diagnosis I asked my doctor a question that would change my life.

“Is there anything I should be eating or avoid eating to help aid this disease?”

His response was that there is no scientific proof which links the two but that he’s had a patient go into remission with the help of the Paleo Diet.

Hospital bracelet still on my wrist and groggy from the anesthesia, my amazingly supportive mother drove me to the grocery store. We bought Paleo food and removed all grains, dairy, gluten, legumes, and sugar from my apartment.

My gastroenterologist now has two patients who have stayed in remission with help from the Paleo Diet.

Since then I have devoted myself to the Paleo lifestyle. Although I work full time, my life is consumed with eating clean and inspiring others through my blog mangiapaleo.com. I even recently started CrossFit to take my health to a whole new level.

HOW PALEO HAS CHANGED ME:

  • My skin developed a glow. It also cleared up my Grannuloma Annulare (an autoimmune skin condition) that I have had on my arm for 14 years.
  • My everlasting lower belly fat disappeared.
  • My nails rarely break and are very strong.
  • My hair got shiner and grew longer.
  • A friend also commented on how white and bright my eyes looked.
  • Paleo also gave me more energy which has brought me to join CrossFit Strongtown.
  • I can think clearly and my mood is almost always positive.
  • Most importantly, my Ulcerative Colitis symptoms were tamed. My flare up went into remission with the help of medication, but stayed in remission because of my Paleo lifestyle.

Paleo keeps my Ulcerative Colitis from restricting my life. My restart button is no longer to run straight to the doctor; it’s to cook some bone broth and troubleshoot my digestion with nutrients and paleo food. Once I figured this out I was able to really change my lifestyle to a more comfortable one.

I hope to inspire others with gastrointestinal issues or Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis. It is my aim to pave the way for others who are struggling with their health. So, I recently started a blog mangiapaleo.com to help spread awareness of Inflammatory Bowel Disease and eating clean.

Laura
@mangiapaleo

Dietary Protocol for Life | The Paleo Diet

Dear Dr. Cordian,

I had all the symptoms of Crohn’s disease and my life had become a living nightmare (an Iridologist confirmed my suspicions.) I was afraid to leave my home and suffered for seven years. I tried everything I came across on the web, and by some miracle, I heard about the Paleo Diet. It saved my health. My symptoms have abated. In addition, my skin no longer breaks out and my fingernails are in much better shape. I am so very grateful. Thank you for sharing this important information with the public. I refused to take any prescription medication for this condition, and I’m so glad I did not. I plan to continue this dietary protocol for the rest of my life. THANK YOU WITH ALL MY HEART!

Janet

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