WHAT IS AN ELIMINATION DIET?
An elimination diet is where you totally cut out a food or group of foods and then one at a time enter that food back into your diet. Six weeks is a good time to completely avoid a food. This gives your body and immune system a chance to calm down from the anti-inflammatory response to proteins in the food you were eating. People who have leaky gut are prone to eating foods they react to easily. What happens is proteins in the food pass through the ONE CELL THICK gut wall as whole proteins rather than these proteins being FIRST broken down into protein fragments. Your immune system functions in a way that it identifies invaders by looking at a sequence of AMINO ACIDS in a protein molecule. Protein molecules are made up of strings or a sequence of amino acids that are chemically tied together. A sequence of 6 of these amino acids is thought to be the number for your immune system to recognize. An immune response is then created to anything with that same sequence. The immune response causes inflammation. Inflammation is considered to consist of pain, swelling, redness and heat in varying degrees. If a kind of tissue in your body has this same 6 amino acids in its own protein structures, your immune system confuses this part of your body with the amino acid sequence in a protein that passed through your one cell thick gut wall. Then a person has an autoimmune condition. Getting off the offending foods could eliminate the autoimmune condition. Pretty cool!!!
An elimination diet takes foods out of your diet that tend to contain proteins that get through the gut wall into your blood stream and lymphatic system where the immune system is prevalent. Proteins that tend to have toxic effects on humans are often given the name LECTINS.
Dr. Steven R. Gundry, in his bookThe Plant Paradox,points out this reality of lectins and the damage they can do, and he uses an elimination diet to get a person off these foods. The lectin knowledge was mainly gained in the 21st century and it is evolving our understanding of how plants we eat commonly can have a negative effect on our health, and for some major health problems can be relieved and eliminated by avoiding the specific plants or plant groups found in the elimination diet to be "bad" for the individual.
While on the elimination diet it is good to rebuild the gut to minimize or eliminate the leaky gut status. Gundry points out that you need to do both elimination and gut rebuilding. Antibiotics, sugar rich diets, pesticides and biocides, GMOs which contain genetic biocides, and a diet heavy in lectin foods create the problem in the first place. Doing an elimination diet takes significantly more discipline initially than simply taking supplements.
Products we carry that help with gut rebuilding include Okra Pepsin E3, Chlorophyll Complex Perles which is a highly concentrated chlorophyll, Prosynbiotic which is rich in prebiotics and antibiotic resistant probiotics, and Zymex which is a gut detoxifier. Also you want each of the digestive organs to be healthy because, for example, a weak liver does not then digest fats well in the gut and they putrify during the digestive process causing further toxic materials that can be absorded into the body.
Like it or not the body is a holistic system. That means that many things can affect other things in body function. As far as health goes you will probably have to work hard at it if you want that health. This is especially true in the USA where farming and animal husbandry have been perverted to a great extent for the majority of food produced in the USA.
Dr. Gundry further points out that there are foods that have entered the diet of man in the last 10.000 years that have plant lectins (proteins) that our genetic selves have not learned to deal with effectively. Ten thousand years, while it may seem gargantuan, is very short in terms of genetic compatability. To put this another way everything we know about civilization has been under the stress of a diet that has had insidious negative effects on our health. The prevalence of arthritis found in Egyptian mummies is an example of the fact that an ancient wheat called Kamut was a staple of their diet and it contains more than one kind of lectin protein that is detrimental or potentially detrimental to their and our health. So going on an elimination diet from things you have been eating all your life could have far reaching health benefits for you and our culture if enough people follow this approach.
Dr. Mike Spearman