Learning about Health – Day 25

Countryside near the TVA site of the Douglas dam, Tenn. (LOC)
A Simpler Time.

If you are new to this site and wondering what this is about, I’ve given myself a 100-day health challenge. I’m using Dr. Junger’s book, Clean – Remove Restore Rejuvenate to guide me through his three-week detoxification program.

I write what I learn from each chapter as I go through Dr. Junger’s book. Hopefully, it will help me to stay committed to completing the detoxification plan. If this sounds like something that interests you, I highly recommend purchasing Dr. Junger’s book (just so you know, I don’t receive a commission should you decide to purchase).

The title for chapter six is, “The Common Root of Dysfunction: Digging for Answers.” Sounds like we’re getting somewhere.

“When the leaves of a plant start looking sick, wise gardeners will dig out the root to take a look.”

Dr. Junger writes that healthy leaves come from healthy nutrient rich soil. By studying other traditions of healing he learned the concept that health and disease start in the intestines.”

Dr. Junger compares the human gastrointestinal system to that of plant roots. The intestines absorb nutrients from our food that function as building blocks that make our bodies.  He states that every single organ or function in the body has a direct link to the intestines.”

Up to eighty percent of our immune system is found in the intestines.

In this chapter, Dr. Junger discusses the four major constituents of the gut system.

The first is the intestinal flora. A healthy intestine contains about two pounds of helpful bacteria.”

The system malfunctions  when nutrient depletion results from inadequate intestinal flora. The helpful bacteria protect us from infections and disease-causing bacteria. Beneficial flora, neutralizes toxins before they get into the bloodstream and keep the bowels regularly moving toxins out of the body.

Modern living creates an imbalance in the gut with things like toxic chemicals, medications, especially antibiotics, alcohol, caffeine and stress.

Yeast is one organism that over-grows when intestinal flora is out of balance. Yeast thrives on sweet foods and dairy products and makes us bloated and gassy by irritating the intestinal lining.

Restoring the intestinal flora is part of the Clean program.

The second major constituent is the intestinal wall. The intestinal lining acts as a barrier to unwanted substances from getting inside and to bacteria, toxins and undigested food from getting out into the bloodstream.

When the intestinal wall cells are smooth, this is known as a healthy intestine. Sometimes cracks occur due to lower healthy bacteria levels caused by inflammation, food sensitivity, excessive alcohol, coffee, preservatives, certain types of medications, and other irritants.

When cracks occur the intestines become permeable. This condition is called Leaky Gut Syndrome.

The third major constituent is the gut-associated lymphatic tissue (GALT). The GALT is the system that mounts the attack against toxic bacteria and chemicals in food and when undigested pieces cross the intestinal-wall barrier, the immune system goes full force.

Dr. Junger states, “Simply from exposure to the standard American diet, our GALT tends to live in a high state of alert, constantly initiating immune responses.”

“Healthy intestinal flora is key to healthy immunity, including ordinary defense against all kinds of colds and bugs.”

The fourth major constituent is nerve cells. Around the intestines and GALT are almost as many nerves cells as in the brain. You know those “gut instincts” you have. The ones that are usually right, but pushed aside when your brain knows better.

It’s because of these nerve cells that the intestines can control their own functions independent of the brain. Apparently, the intestinal nerve cells communicate just like brain neurons — with neurotransmitters.

In fact, Dr. Junger discovered that 80 to 90 percent of the bodies serotonin is made by the intestinal nerve cells. Serotonin is responsible for producing feelings of happiness and well-being.  Isn’t that really interesting?

An equally interesting topic discussed is on gene expression. Things that affect whether a gene is turned on or turned off are; food, emotions, thoughts, accumulated toxins and environmental influences such as heat, light, sound, radiation, etc.

The science of nutrigenomics studies how our food affects gene expression. Researchers at John Hopkins University discovered “sulforaphane” found in the seeds of broccoli, “toned down the expression of certain cancer genes.” Now we know, genes do not equal destiny.

On a personal note, it’s very clear to me where I need to focus my efforts in healing from RA; a healthy intestinal eco-system.

Next post will explore chapter seven, “The Clean Program“.

To read a summary of chapter five, click here.

A journey is always more fun with company and so I thank each and every one from the bottom of my heart for accompanying me on this learning about health experience.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be used to diagnose or treat symptoms or medical conditions. Always consult a qualified medical professional.


Learning about Love: Day 11

Life expressions.

Welcome to another lovely day! My friend mentioned that she did not receive an email notification for yesterday’s post. So — if you missed Day 10 click here to read.

I think I mentioned that I’m reading the book, “Practicing the Sacred Art of Listening – A Guide to Enrich Your Relationships and Kindle Your Spiritual Life”. Kay Lindahl, the author writes;

“Learning to truly listen to one another is the beginning of new understanding and compassion, which deepens and broadens our sense of community.”

Lindahl goes on to say that by truly listening to another we are loving them and that the other feels loved by the presence we bring to their dialogue.

This truth was further validated last evening when I listened to an Eckhart Tolle talk with a friend.

Tolle was speaking on bringing present moment awareness into everyday activities like working, preparing food, driving, shopping etc. etc.

He basically said that when you give your undivided attention to someone, they feel special; loved.

What do you think? Do you feel loved or special when someone deeply listens to you? Can you tell when someone isn’t listening to you? How does it make you feel?

Practice for the week:  Bring present moment awareness into daily activities by; focus awareness to the breath, feel the aliveness of the inner body, become aware of sense perceptions.  Repeat often during the day. Post sticky notes as reminders. Good Luck Friends.

I’ll let you know how I do with this.

Once again, thank you so much for accompanying me on this journey. I really appreciate the support and wonderful comments. 🙂 Wishing everyone a really awesome day.

If you are new to this blog and wonder what this is all about, I’ve given myself a 100 day “Learning about Love” challenge. So — for the next 100 days, it’s all about love. My good friend calls it a “love makeover” (hehehe).

I created a Facebook page for The Meaning for my Life to build a community where like-minded individuals can share the meaning for their life as well as items of inspiration to help keep us focused on Love, Life and Presence. Just give us a ‘Like’ and your in (hehe). The Like button is in the right sidebar under ‘My Story’ pages.

Learning about Love: Day 7

Peace And Love

“Who, being loved, is poor?” — Oscar Wilde

Today, I’d like to explore the word ‘reverence’.

According to The Free Dictionary.com, ‘reverence’ is a feeling of profound awe and respect and often love; veneration. It’s also an act of showing respect, especially a bow or curtsy.

I’m reading a book titled “A Tree Full of Angels – Seeing the Holy in the Ordinary” written by author and Benedictine Sister, Macrina Wiederkehr.

Macrina writes;

“Today I carried all the images of life that I could hold in my mind’s eye:  trees and flowers, bees, mourning doves and turtles, geese and eagles, deer and rabbits, lions and tigers and bears, men and women, children and angels and of course, God, the Life of all life. Such beautiful memories of life filled my soul. Moments from the past visited the empty places in my heart and renewed my reverence for life.”

As a child, Macrina  experienced a profound reverence for life. She recalls saving the turtles that crossed the road from untimely death by placing them safely across the road.

I think each of us is born with a reverence for life and that most of us are educated away from the feelings of awe and deep respect as we grow up.

Like Macrina, I’m renewing my reverence for life. And…it seems synchronicity would have to agree.

When I was writing this post, I checked my  Facebook account to catch up on recent activity. A friend had shared a link to a TED talk given by Nobel Peace Price recipient Alexander Tsiaras.

Apparently, Tsiaras used the technology he and a fellow inventor created to capture the development of a human life form from conception to birth.

It’s truly amazing and only 9 minutes long.

Suggestions for contemplation: What does reverence for life mean to you? Does society foster reverence for life?

If you are new to this blog and wonder what this is all about, I’ve given myself a 100 day “Learning about Love” challenge. So — for the next 100 days, it’s all about love. My good friend calls it a “love makeover” (hehehe).

Thank you to all who accompany me on this journey. I really appreciate the support and wonderful comments. 🙂

Wishing one and all a reverent day.

I’m All Pooped Out!

While it is true that I’m experiencing more frequent elimination due to the antibiotics the doc prescribed, it wasn’t the instigation for my choice of title. No, that would be rude.

When I say, “I’m all pooped out,” I mean I’m tired. Exhausted. Drained. I think I remember my dad used that expression. I hope he meant he was tired.

It’s tax season here in Canada, eh? And although I wouldn’t call myself a hard-core tax preparer, I have been helping-out (somewhat) more than usual in between RA flare-ups and other health diagnoses.

So, what I’m really trying to say, is that I’ve spent more time away from my computer during the last month and a half and haven’t been able to keep up with the blog-neighbors and Facebook friends, for that matter.

This means, I’m lagging behind on all the news and I’m not sure where to start to get caught up being that tax time is gearing up for the final eight days starting on Monday and I’m still not feeling up to the challenge.

I did, however, take some time to kick-back, read Anita’s Moorjani’s book, Dying to be ME and write a review this weekend. I posted it on my other WordPress blog, Miracle Mama. If you have time, you may want to check it out. It’s sooo inspiring!

In the meanwhile, I hope everyone is well and I look forward to catching up soon.

Thanks for visiting and feel free to catch me up on what I’ve missed.