This chapter has a few specific applications:
1. for those who have reached that certain crest between self-loathing and self esteem where they can no longer endure the condition of their body and are prepared to do whatever it takes to reverse the tide
2. for those who have begun a nutrition or supplement program with no results, or else may have reached a plateau in their progress.
3. for those with long term allergies which years of shots and pills have not cured
4. for those who suspect that they’re not eliminating normally
5. for those who have been diagnosed with one of the following dead-end labels:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Leaky Gut Syndrome
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
This is not a discussion for the improvement of the above conditions. We’re talking about resolution: the return to normal operation of the systems. If 1-4 above apply to you, and you grasp the principles cited in the medical sources at the end of this chapter, your problems may well be over.
Many doctors have noted the pivotal importance of the colon in the body’s health, from the ancients to the moderns. Physicians from ancient Rome and Greece felt that “death begins in the colon.” (Hippocrates) These healers regarded the colon as a life-center of the body – one of its most important organs.
The colon’s importance seems often to be glossed over and patronized by today’s mainstream approach, in which the colon is thought of simply as the body’s sewer, without regard for its many critical, dynamic biologic functions. Consequently, rates of death from colon cancer are at an all time high in our country’s history. Colon cancer is now the #3 cancer in the U.S.
The above list of “diseases” are experienced today in epidemic proportions, and with standard treatment are almost never cured.
The irony is that to return to a normal state is simplicity itself. The biggest obstacle seems to be finding that out.
Let’s begin with some
The digestive tract can be thought of as a long tube from one end to the other. Food goes in one end; waste exits the other. The tube is divided into sections we know:
The large intestine is also called the colon.
That’s the whole tube, top to bottom. It’s important to remember one odd fact: the inside of the tube is still considered the outside of the body. No misprint. The food sitting there in your intestines is still outside the body. Reason: it hasn’t been absorbed into the bloodstream yet.
Let’s follow a grape through the tube.
You pop the grape into your mouth. Chewing releases the grape’s enzymes, which are going to help break it down into its component parts.
You swallow the chewed grape. It goes down the esophagus and ends up in the stomach. There the grape gets churned around some more, and has some of the body’s digestive juices break it down further. After about an hour of this, the stomach spits the chewed grape particles into the next section of the tube, the small intestine.
The small intestine is about 22′ long. After more enzymes are added, this is when the grape particles first get inside the body. Happens like this: the inside of the small intestine is lined with a velvety layer of tiny fingerlike projections called microvilli. It’s kinda like a microscopic version of one of those pieces of mattress foam rubber with the bumps on it. The microvilli increase the absorptive surface area of the colon to the size of a football field. Absorption of the nutrients contained in the grape particles happens through the microvilli. The nutrients are passing from the inside of the small intestine through the intestine wall, into the bloodstream.
After several hours of giving the small intestine enough chance to absorb all nutrients, the undigested waste, whatever’s left over of the grape that wasn’t absorbed, gets moved along and propelled into the final section of the tube: the colon.
The colon is a muscular tube about six feet long. All along the walls are infoldings called haustrae, which mark off sections of the colon.
By the end of adolescence, the passage through the colon should be about two inches in diameter. Adolescents should have little trouble eliminating, because the process of undigested layers of waste sticking to the lining of the colon wall is not that advanced. With an unrestricted diet high in rancid fats and excess protein, the inside passageway gradually becomes smaller and smaller, requiring more force to push everything through. Straining at stool is an obvious sign of a blocked colon and is not normal.
Elimination should be effortless, no matter what the person’s age. Producing rabbit pellets with great effort is a sign of serious obstruction, as well as a toxifying lifestyle. Adolescents who are educated to eat lots of raw live foods may never experience the buildup of sludge layers at all.
Here we see the distinction between average and normal:
The average American teenager has a bad diet and little dietary advice, eating about 125 grams of protein a day with about 25 grams being sufficient. The normal American teenager – about as rare as finding an honest man in Congress – likely has been shown what to eat for optimum health, and knows the indigestibility of and absence of nutrients in most foods available in the cafeteria.
There are three primary reasons for rotting food persisting in the digestive tract:
1. We kill our friendly bacteria
2. Acidification of the body decreases enzyme production
3. Mucoid plaque in the intestinal lining halts peristalsis
Let’s do them one at a time.
1. FRIENDLY BACTERIA
Wrongly described as the body’s sewer, the colon is actually buzzing with life activity. Millions of friendly bacteria are hard at work in the colon. Their job is the final stage of digestion, leaving only what is absolutely of no use to the body to be eliminated. The friendly bacteria, weighing as much as three pounds in the normal colon, more than 400 species, also function to keep bad bacteria in check. (Shahani) It seems that most bacteria in the world and in the body are actually beneficial to our health. Bacteria are the janitors of the world, disposing of decaying and diseased cells. Think of a beach with no bacteria. What would happen to all those dead fish that wash up there? Wouldn’t be much of a Club Med spot, that’s certain.
How do the friendly bacteria, called probiotics, keep the bad bacteria in check? Well, think of a crowded theatre. You walk in, and there’s no place to sit; all the seats are taken. So you can’t stay. Same thing with bacteria. There’s only a certain number of “seats” in the colon. If they’re all taken by friendly bacteria, then there’s no chance for the bad bacteria to set up shop and start to duplicate themselves. According to most researchers, like Simon Martin, normal probiotics should be more numerous than the cells of the intestinal lining itself.
Here’s why probiotics are so important. Normal people generally have some cancer cells, Candida yeast, E. coli, staphylococcus, strep, and any number of other potentially bad organisms you can think of in their tract most of the time. But they don’t get any disease. Researchers know, for example, that 50% of men over age 75 actually have prostate cancer, found on autopsy, but only 2% die from it. Why? The body encapsulated the cancer: limited and controlled its growth, walled it off. The discoverer of the HIV virus himself, Dr. Luc Montagnier, said that HIV alone cannot cause AIDS. (The Coming Plague) Depressed immune environment is also necessary. Same with Candida or most other bacteria; normally they’ll be held in check by sufficient friendly bacteria. E. coli is actually a probiotic when held in check by normal friendly flora. It’s only when the friendly probiotic bacteria get killed off that the potentially bad organisms get a chance to get a foothold and take over. The bad bugs are then called opportunists.
So probiotics (friendly bacteria) are extremely important. The whole key is balance. Problem is, our friendly bacteria are constantly being killed off. How? Same culprits as cited in the ALLERGIES chapter:
antibiotics we take
antibiotics given to the animals whose meat we eat
antacids, like Zantac, Tagamet, Prilosec, etc.
NSAIDs, like Advil, Tylenol, Excedrin, Motrin, etc.
other prescription and over the counter medications
Without friendly probiotics, the final stage of digestion can’t take place in the colon. Debris rots in there. Opportunistic bacteria and Candida albicans start taking over. Bernard Jensen, on the relation between the bad bacteria and the undigested food:
“…bacteria and viruses, which are cell scavengers, are not there for lack of something better to do. They’re there because there is malnourished, enzyme-depleted, diseased, and necrotic tissue. Functioning as nature’s biological sanitation department, they must break down and eliminate the sick tissue to prevent further poisoning of the body. If you stop their action, you allow continuous poisoning by the decaying tissue.”
– Empty Harvest p 113
Jensen makes a point here that should not be missed. He’s talking about rotting food in the colon as well as diseased living cells of the colon itself, both attracting bacteria. It’s an identical situation in the two separate instances:
* Undigested food in the colon
* Bacterial infection in a diseased organ of the body (the colon)
In neither case are the bacteria causing illness. They are trying to prevent illness by breaking down the dying tissue. Whether it’s rotting yogurt in a blocked colon, a dead coyote in the forest, or infected liver cells in the body of an alcoholic, bacteria are just doing what they do best: cleaning up. When the bacteria are “diagnosed” as the cause of the illness, rather than a sign of the illness, the medical approach is to try and kill them. But that’s like killing the garbagemen. The garbage remains. Understanding such a simple concept is pivotal in arriving at a holistic outlook toward health.
Chronically undigested food is often present in quantities too great for any bacteria to scavenge. The debris then becomes plastered onto the inside lining of the colon, eventually making it smooth and shiny, like the inside of a new shotgun barrel. When this happens, absorption is blocked. (Rogers)
2. ACIDIFICATION OF THE BODY
This is a bit technical, so don’t feel bad about skipping it. It involves pH. That means acid/base balance. You know, like soap is basic or alkaline, and oranges are acidic. Now in the body certain places only operate correctly if they’re at exactly the right pH. The stomach lining for example has to be alkaline in order to counteract the acidic digestive enzymes. Otherwise we’d constantly be burning holes in the stomach lining. All phases of digestion are totally dependent upon a delicate acid/base balance.
The problem is, most foods in the Standard American Diet – Big Mac, fries, coke, pizza, etc. are acid-forming. That means they lower the pH of the body: too acid. The balance is disrupted: many enzymes can’t operate. Digestion is inhibited: food sits there and rots.
A sixteen ounce bottle of Coke has a pH around 2. Very acidic. To bring the pH back up to our normal 7.3, we would have to dilute the Coke with about ten gallons of water. But we don’t usually drink ten gallons of water after every Coke. So how does it work?
The blood must maintain a pH between 7.3 and 7.45. (Guyton). If not, we die. With all the acid foods we keep eating, the body tries desperately to keep its pH within the range. The first things it tries are buffering with bicarbonates in the blood and lungs. (Guyton, p 392) Next, the body begins to sweep the extra acids into the tissues, especially muscles and joints. That’s what lactic acid buildup comes from. If that’s still not enough, as a final effort to keep from acidifying, the body will actually precipitate acids out of solution, in the form of solid crystals and salts. This is the exact mechanism of gallstones, kidneys stones, uric acid crystals, plaque, and cholesterol crystals. A built-in protection for self preservation. We think of these stones as major medical problems, but in reality it’s just a sign that the body’s systems are functioning as they should. Otherwise we’d be dead of acidosis.
So what happens to the colon from an over-acid diet? In a word, enzymes. Or rather, lack of enzymes. Enzymes are necessary to break down and digest food. If the environment is too acid, the enzymes in the stomach and small intestine don’t work very well. By the time it gets to the colon, everything that was supposed to be digested should have already had it happen. But it hasn’t. So the undigested food gets dumped into the colon. There are no digestive enzymes in the colon. So the food just sits there and rots.
Now, minerals can only be absorbed at a certain pH. And minerals are a necessary component of enzyme formation. So it’s a vicious circle: acidification of the body causes decreased minerals, which cause decreased enzyme production, which causes the food to rot in the tract. Which further blocks absorption of water, nutrients, and minerals. Downward spiral.
Absorption. Another critical job of the colon is electrolyte reabsorption and water reclamation back into the bloodstream, so we’re not constantly losing them. Electrolytes are important minerals, like sodium and potassium which conduct electrical charge through the body. They are necessary for normal cell function. The idea is for the body to maintain as much water, sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium as possible, for maximum conservation. Remember, we’re almost 70% water. The colon is the logical place for this reabsorption to happen since it’s the last portion of the tube.
In the sick human, the colon is blocked. Water and electrolytes don’t get reabsorbed. Where do they go? Out. The body loses water, general dehydration, cell death, premature aging, kidney destruction, spilling of electrolytes, blood thickening, the whole enchilada of downward health then follows. Blocked absorption alone is enough to slowly kill you.
3. MUCOID PLAQUE HALTS PERISTALSIS
Mucoid plaque is a term used by many holistic doctors and researchers to describe the uniform rubbery layers of mucous and rotting food which compact themselves year after year along the entire length of the digestive tract. (Anderson)
Peristalsis is the normal rhythmic muscular action of the intestine to push food down and outward, out of the body.
Mucoid plaque is formed as the intestine keeps producing mucous as a normal response to an irritant: undigested food. Food is not supposed to just sit there and rot. We’re only supposed to store three meals (Jensen.) But most Americans store nine, twelve, or even more meals before one comes out. This increased transit time is irritating to the intestinal lining. Mucous is not powerful enough to move the toxic, enzymeless sludge of Taco Supremes and Curlie Fried Onion Rings with ketchup. But the body keeps on valiantly trying, and more and more mucous is constantly being produced. Eventually the mucous becomes matrixed with the most indigestible elements, like trans fatty acids from the Barbecue and Sour Cream chips. And it goes on day after day, week after week, month after month, etc. And the layers get thicker and harder and the colon grows in diameter. And we absorb less and less nutrients and we lose more and more water and minerals.
Want to discover your own transit time? Try this simple test: eat something you usually don’t eat that will be easily identifiable when it comes out. Frozen corn, peanuts, and pistachios are some good examples. Simply note the time from when you eat the markers to the time when you see them leaving. That’s your transit time, at least of the matter that is not cemented to the colon walls.
The intestinal walls contain long muscles whose job it is to keep things moving along. These muscles gradually become overstretched and weakened by the pressure of too much waste pushing against them, expanding outward, like blowing up a long thin balloon. Thus peristalsis – the normal wavelike muscular motion of the colon – is further inhibited and blockage is again promoted.
Mucoid plaque blocks inflow and outflow, resulting in lack of nutrient, water, and electrolyte absorption, as well as retention of toxic putrefaction in balloon-like blocked outpocketings of the intestine. In addition, pathogenic bacteria, parasites, and Candida thrive in the mucoid plaque layer and are actually protected by it from prescription or natural herbal remedies and efforts to remove them. Researchers refer to the mucoid plaque as a “culture medium” for these organisms. (Forstner)
Mucoid plaque is described as a natural response to an unnatural stimulus. It is a necessary protection the body produces to try and shield itself from poisons. Mucoid plaque is a product of the constant production of mucous by the glycocalyx lining cells, brought on by the modern American diet of fake, empty, processed, chemical-laden, hormone-laced, antibiotic-soaked foods. Many doctors have noted that when the plaque can be removed by a cleanse, remission from virtually any disease may result. Simple cause and effect.
Mucoid plaque has been definitely linked to gastric cancer by the simple mutation of the lining cells – metaplasia. (Sipponen, Filipe) No big surprise here – cell damage is caused by inflow/outflow blockage, and after a certain time, mutation occurs. Another mechanism is that the constant secretion of mucous captures the toxins, but since normal transit is blocked, the toxins become locked in one location, often for years, resulting in irritation and eventual cell mutation. The cells steep in their own wastes, month after month.
In a lecture in San Jose California on 26 Sep 98, Dr. Richard Anderson told the story of one of his patients who underwent the cleanse in Hawaii a few years ago. The patient was passing long strands of the rubbery mucoid plaque, some over 20 feet in length! Fascinated, the patient hung the strands over his clothesline in the back yard. He then took a length of the plaque, and packaged it in a box to send to the mainland to prove what happened to him. He mailed the package at the local post office in Hawaii.
A few days later, two serious-looking officials in ATF windbreakers knocked on the patient’s door and asked him if he had sent such and such a package to such and such an address. The patient said yes, and asked what was the problem. They answered that the post office has dogs that sniff out all packages mailed off the island, and that one of them had become very excited about this package. The patient asked what were the dogs trained to detect. Only two things, came the answer: drugs and explosives. Which dog was it? The one for explosives. The patient was incredulous, especially when he recalled that he had worked with munitions some 25 years ago, and his job was to handle explosives! He explained the detox cleanse to the two agents and they were satisfied. This story illustrates the power of a such an intestinal cleanse: the body had retained these strong toxins in the mucoid plaque lining of the colon, stored in a concentration powerful enough to be detected by dogs through the layers of wrapping of a sealed package some 25 years later!
Of course it’s anecdotal, but Anderson has been doing this for 15 years and has cleansed several thousand patients. He has amassed a ton of clinical data, but not through double blind studies. (Only drugs require double blind studies.) The rubbery mucoid plaque layer seals in toxins and prevents absorption of water and nutrients. Toxic sludge promotes proliferation of pathological bacteria and yeasts, like Candida.
Now for the bad news.
There’s another separate demon at work in the blocked colon. His name is
Here’s how he works: The sludge that’s stopping up the works is undigested food. Undigested means rotting: putrefying, fermenting, going rancid. Proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, respectively. Want to see what that looks like? Leave some meat, some french fries, and some bread out on the counter for a week. A blocked colon can be even worse, because of the time frame involved: in many people the sludge sits in the colon for weeks or even longer. The colon walls are normally very well sealed in order to protect the body against reabsorbing the waste that is about to be eliminated. It’s a sophisticated design, set up to allow water and electrolytes back into the body, but no toxic poisons. Stay with me now. In long-term buildup of undigested food in the colon, eventually a situation emerges that doctors call Leaky Gut Syndrome.
Essentially what’s happening is that the sludge has built up so much blockage that the inner membranes of the colon develop leaks. Some of the toxic debris is forced through the walls of the colon, along with the water and electrolytes, back into the bloodstream. Hence, the name autointoxication: you’re poisoning yourself.
Once in the bloodstream, the undigested debris, now a foreign irritant, can take up residence in any organ or tissue it finds room. Chronic inflammation begins, and gradually, degeneration of that organ. Here are some of the diseases that such a sequence can cause:
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Multiple Joint Pain Syndrome
to name just a few. This list is taken from an article by Leo Galland, MD who has done extensive research in this area of hyperpermeability, as illustrated by the list of over 150 references at the end of the article.
It’s funny, when people with average intelligence first hear about Leaky Gut Syndrome, they usually understand it right away because it seems logical. Very often, it is the nutritionists, dieticians, and doctors who seem more apt to question the existence of hyperpermeability, or Leaky Gut Syndrome. Even though there has been years of copious research in the best medical journals thoroughly documenting its characteristics and nature, Leaky Gut Syndrome is not commonly taught as part of the medical curriculum, or the abbreviated curriculum presented to nutritionists and dieticians. Many of these people therefore conclude that since they got their degrees without hearing about hyperpermeability or Leaky Gut Syndrome, it must not exist! Very curious.
Dr. Galland suffers from no such illusion. He traces the physiology of how large molecules of the “toxic/antigenic load” (undigested sludge) work their way through the intestinal walls and are first introduced into the liver before they are available to the bloodstream. Dr. Galland describes the “high cost” of the liver’s detox work: creation of free radicals and other “reactive intermediaries” which themselves may be passed into the bloodstream if the toxic burden becomes too great for the liver’s defenses. Here we see the particulars of autointoxication, not just some New Age literary musings. Dr. Galland points out the wide range of pathological conditions, listed above, which may come about exactly through this mechanism. Very sophisticated markers have been devised which can measure the toxins that “leak” into the body. (S. Martin)
Jensen has an axiom that the disease is named by where the toxins finally settle.
Candida albicans, the opportunistic yeast, can be both a cause and a result of Leaky Gut Syndrome. Once Candida gets a foothold in the gut, it puts down “roots” through the gut wall, causing openings through which large molecules and toxins can leak. Candida cells can themselves be introduced into the bloodstream in this same fashion. (Simon Martin)
Sherry Rogers MD, implicates Leaky Gut Syndrome as a primary cause for autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus. She says such conditions can be the result of the
“formation of auto-antibodies due to leaking of body tissue look-alike antigens…”
Let’s talk propulsion for a minute. Normal elimination involves rhythmic contraction of the muscles in the colon wall, to push the waste outward. Again, this natural, wavelike motion is called peristalsis.
It is normal to eliminate two or more times per day. Transit time: how much time between food in and waste out. Normal transit time is less than 24 hours. This means that only two or three meals should be in transit throughout the digestive tract at a time. Today’s breakfast IN pushes yesterday’s breakfast or lunch OUT. Toxic fecal matter is supposed to totally leave the body in one day, not hang around to toxify. That’s the design. Many people you know have been brought up to think that it is normal to eliminate only once every two or three days. Or even longer. That means they are storing NINE meals or more in the tract at all times. The waste from nine meals or more is always inside them.
Want to track your transit time? Use a marker; corn perhaps. Time it.
The problem is that the longer the food is in the colon, the more it begins to rot and toxify the body. Modern soft foods and empty junk foods have greatly increased transit time, for two reasons:
1. They are indigestible
2. They lack fiber
The colon thus becomes a breeding ground for pathological bacteria whose toxic byproducts further add to the totality of biochemical poisons. All this yuk is then available to be reabsorbed into the bloodstream, because of Leaky Gut Syndrome. From the chapter on Allergies, you’ll remember that means hyperpermeability of the gut wall: stuff gets through into the bloodstream which shouldn’t get through, because of the destruction of the cells of the colon’s lining. Large molecules of rotting fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, which also may drag along with them the toxic wastes of the pathological bacteria that have been breeding in the putrid sludge, all this can leak through into the bloodstream. From there the toxins have access to every cell in the body. Getting the image?
Let’s make it worse. Let’s hypothesize a lot of indigestible chips and margarine into the mix. No enzymes. Less than one glass of water per day. That’s right – we’re making cement here. Solid compacting of unmetabolizable sewage, daily pasted and encrusted in ever-thickening layers along the inside folds, the haustrae, of the colon. Mucoid plaque. Think the inside diameter of that shotgun barrel is getting bigger, or smaller year by year?
SIX FOOT BALLOON
The colon is fabulously extensible: it can expand up to five times its normal size when stuffed. Surgeons report expanded colons up to 12 inches in diameter, with a central opening the size of a pencil! (Tissue Cleansing p. 27) Technicians who measure percent body fat on patients day after day begin to notice an odd fact: many people with almost normal body fat readings have enormous abdomens. Pregnant trucker Santa Clauses with skinny legs. Reason: it’s not fat. It’s a monster colon, packed with sludge to five times of its normal size, expanding outward. (Rich. Anderson) Actually makes sense – if it were otherwise, many people would be dead in their 20s because the colon walls would become so layered with sludge that there would be no passageway left for elimination. The colon would simply close up.
Doing sit-ups? Trying to flatten that lower abdomen, and you aren’t really overweight? But it won’t get flat, right? It isn’t fat. Most likely it’s rotting food in the colon. How’s the elimination? Transit time?
In his fascinating book, Cleanse and Purify, Dr. Richard Anderson cites his encounter with one medical doctor who did not want to be identified. This doctor, after hearing Anderson’s lecture about mucoid plaque and expanded toxic colons, told the audience:
“I have spent twelve years working in the field of post-mortem diagnosis. I have seen many thousands of dissected cadavers. What Rich is telling you is the absolute truth. Everybody has it in there. We have a way of attaching a hose to the upper intestines and with the aid of powerful chemicals, we literally blow the stuff right out of the intestines. I have seen the heavy ‘beer belly’ and so called fat people lose all that bulk in five minutes. It wasn’t fat. It was the mucoid layer that Rich was talking about. and in that filthy substance we see all sorts of worms, bacteria, fungi, and many unidentifiable things. It is almost unbelievable that people can live with that filth in them. All these people were dead of course, and it wasn’t hard to see why.”
Probably won’t read a story like that in any of the popular press.
The noted surgeon, Dr. Harvey Kellogg, of the Kellogg Sanitarium in Battle Creek Michigan, whose experience was with the colons of living subjects, agreed:
“Of the 22,000 operations that I have personally performed, I have never found a single normal colon. Of the 100,000 that were performed under my jurisdiction, not over 6% were normal.”
Dr. Kellogg estimated that over 90% of the “diseases of civilization” were due to a blocked and non-functioning colon.
– cited in Iridology: the Science and Practice p 408
If “normal” people can have up to 22 lbs of undigested food in the colon, how much can the Beef Barbecue Buddhas be carrying? 50 lbs? 100? The imagination reels.
A little more plumbing, now. The colon begins in the lower right abdomen, goes up toward the head about 8 inches or so and then makes a right angle straight across the upper abdomen over to the left side. Then it angles downward again, and then out. Trace this path with your finger. OK. The section of the colon that traverses straight across from one side to the other is known as the Transverse Colon.
Gastroenterologist researchers now know that in the stuffed and expanded transverse colon, the horizontal section, the extra weight is enough to make it prolapse, or fall down, so that it is lying atop organs that it normally wouldn’t be in contact with, like the bladder, the uterus, the prostate, or the ovaries. Dr. Stephen Chang at the University of California has now shown that combining the effects of Leaky Gut Syndrome with a collapsed colon can actually be the mechanism for toxification, infection, and disease of any organ that is now touching this leaking, sagging toxic tube. (Ross Anderson) Obviously it would be an ineffective waste of drugs to treat these new infections in isolation, as long as the process of autointoxication continues, wouldn’t you say?
Another common condition is
Intestinal reflux, gastric reflux, esophageal reflux – who cares? All the same idea. The pipes are backed up. You start eating and you’re already full. Stomach juices back up and burn the delicate lining of the esophagus. Heartburn. Classic misdiagnosis: hiatal hernia, which is something rare and completely different and unrelated. Reflux is much more common and easily explained, in light of the empty, toxic, indigestible American diet we teach our children. When the overall pressure can be relieved by a colon cleanse, transit returns and reflux is no more. Reflux never was the underlying problem. Like the rest of them, reflux was just a sign of the problem: blocked pipes.
You’re getting a lot of information here, more than most doctors want to think about. The medical attitude toward the colon generally takes the Sewer View. Much simpler to deal with: laxatives which force the most recent contents out by introducing a corrosive irritant drug into the bowels. But the cemented sludge remains. Some 44 million Americans depend on laxatives for elimination. With $23 billion a year in antibiotics (see chapter) being given to American patients, concern for normal flora repopulation doesn’t get much airplay either.
The view of the colon as a living, breathing, active, vital organ is probably not something you’re going to hear about at your next HMO visit. Corrosive laxatives may bring a day or two of relief, but the underlying condition persists. Antibiotics may kill all the bacteria for awhile, but why were the bad bacteria there in the first place? Rotting food. And what about the friendly bacteria also killed off by the antibiotics? Who’s gonna do their job? No one.
Then there’s the standard drugs most internists use. One of the most common is Prilosec. As we saw in the chapter on Enzymes ENZYMES, Prilosec is a powerful inhibitor of HCl (hydrochloric acid.) The reasoning goes something like this: the patient has tremendous burning gut pain and bad digestion and elimination. Must be too much stomach acid. So Prilosec turns off the stomach acid and the burning stops. For today. But guess what else stops. Digestion. Without HCl, protein doesn’t get broken down, and it sits there and rots, further contributing to the toxic build-up and cess-pooling. This is called treating the problem by harming the patient.
With reflux, clearing the colon takes the pressure off the lower part of the GI tract, allowing room for the contents of the small intestine and the stomach to move downward. No more splashing acids into the esophagus. It’s simple plumbing. But natural cures are always overlooked if they interfere with drug sales.
Another drug – Propulsid – supposedly works by forcing the impacted food out of the intestines. Unfortunately, so many people have died of heart failure from it, that is was scheduled to be taken off the market after 6 months, which would be Aug 2000. (Rubin) [That’s standard procedure. Even though the FDA knows people are dying from a drug, they keep it on the market for up to a year to allow the drug companies to recover some of their investment!]
In the colon, the layers of compacted inner cement prevent reabsorption of water and electrolytes, as well as the return of normal flora activity. Dehydration and indigestion ensue. The toxic debris begins to irritate and inflame the delicate mucosal cells of the inner lining. Aspirin, Motrin, and Tylenol further aggravate the lining. (Rogers)
Chronic inflammation of the colon’s inner lining – colitis – is epidemic. It is a precursor to cancer. Many patients have found that after detoxing the colon and getting rid of rotting wastes that have been in there for weeks or months, suddenly their colitis is history!
is now the third most common cancer in America. Simple mechanism: blockage of inflow and outflow by rotting sludgy plaque. Surface lining cells swim in toxins day in day out, then weeks and months. Can’t get nutrients, can’t get rid of wastes. That about covers it for cell needs.
Colon cancer has also long been linked directly to the chlorination of municipal drinking water. (See Water chapter.) The mechanism is simple: chlorine sterilizes the colon by killing off the normal friendly bacteria which should live there. A 1989 report from Oak Ridge Associated Universities showed definite correlation between increased cancer incidence and fifteen years of chlorine in Denver’s drinking water. (Eco-Update)
With no flora, sludge builds up and the delicate epithelial cells of the colon lining become packed with toxic decaying waste. Same scenario: the cells can’t perform the two necessary functions of every living cell – nutrition and waste removal. Many cells die, but other simply mutate. That’s what cancer is: altered, or mutated, cells.
Sections of the colon can collapse and become very narrow, like ribbons, easily blocked with hardened waste. This creates a condition called Crohn’s Disease, and the narrow sections are called strictures. Extreme force is then necessary to propel waste past these blocked narrow passageways. Between the narrowed sections, outpocketings of toxic poisons can then balloon out, due to lack of normal transit of wastes. These pockets are very hospitable environments for bad bacteria and parasites to set up shop. Imagine the potency of by-products given off by pathological bacteria who are themselves feeding off toxic sludge. Autointoxication advances.
A desperate reflex to try and expel the mounting poisonous load commonly results in violent and painful cramping of colon wall muscles – Spastic Colon. The problem is not with the colon. The problem is with the human who keeps poisoning himself.
Resection, or cutting away a problem length of the colon, is a common medical recommendation in the persistent “problem colon” case. Sometimes the impacted waste has become like hard rubber or even calcified like a cement. Laxatives and drugs just won’t do the trick. Standard medical thinking is, when drugs fail, something has to be cut out. The Kragen Method: the body is an automobile. Not a very holistic or long-term outlook, but it pays the bills. And it’s got quite a tradition. Usual result is that the scar tissue which forms after the surgery can soon form as much obstruction as the original undigested cement load.
For colon cancer, resection is routine. Cleansing is not even a medical option at that point. What they’ll never tell you is that one third of all colon resections for cancer end up in recurrence of the cancer later on. (Yamada p 1801) Stands to reason: if you don’t remove the cause of the cancer in the first place – autointoxication – what’s to keep the cancer from returning?
The connection between Leaky Gut and
should now be apparent. Allergy symptoms are one of the signs of autointoxication. Most allergies are food allergies, and Leaky Gut Syndrome is one mechanism and one explanation of that entire process: indigestible food, rotting in gut, leaking into bloodstream, symptoms of allergy. When the doctors “can’t find the cause” of your allergies, here it is. Read the chapter on Allergies: The Threshold of Reactivity.
Time for a reality check. The colon should be seen as a life center of the body, in my opinion, not as a sewer. Conserving water and minerals, creating a hospitable environment for the life-promoting probiotic bacteria, and providing an unobstructed path for waste elimination – these are indispensable functions of the colon, and should be the only goals of any treatment program.
Back in the 1920s Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Alexis Carrel began his famous experiment in which he proved that living cells could be kept alive indefinitely by simply controlling the nutrients and waste removal in the surrounding solution. After 28 years, the original chicken liver cells were still alive in the petri dish, and Dr. Carrel’s point was proven. For living cells, there are two main requirements: proper nutrients, and unobstructed elimination of wastes. With a blocked colon, all the body’s cells suffer: autointoxication poisons the entire body, all its tissues, and all its organs. This can be the cause of practically any disease, especially those conditions listed in the pathology books as “cause unknown.” JH Tilden, MD actually went so far as to say that this type of chronic blood poisoning was the only disease. (Toxemia Explained)
That’s a brief overview of how the colon should work. For the majority of Americans, it doesn’t. Death rates from colon cancer have been increasing since 1971. So the other side of the coin is that a clean, unblocked colon can dramatically boost the health of the entire body, allowing the body’s natural defenses to start defending. Disease cannot coexist in a healthy body.
Provided with the preceding information, what kind of shape do you think your colon is in? Impacted? Diagnosed pathology? Pregnant Buddha? Average functioning, but some cement layers suspected? Even the healthiest colons can benefit from periodic roto-rootering.
Colon hydrotherapy when performed by a licensed professional is more than just an enema. My opinion is that its real value is as a jumpstart to cleansing. To get weekly maintenance colonics may not allow the normal proliferation of the body’s own friendly bacteria, because they are always getting flushed out. But to get things moving in the person who has decided to detox and cleanse, colonics can certainly be effective.
Spinal adjustment can have immediate and dramatic effects on colon pathology, especially with Spastic Colon. The nerve plexus through which the brain controls the action of the colon, those nerves exit the spinal cord in between the lumbar vertebrae. The nerves turn the colon ON and OFF. Any spasm is a blocked reflex arc: the OFF switch is stuck. Specific adjustment of the involved vertebra can break the stuck spasm reflex instantaneously, and restore normal function of the colon. No colon diagnosis should ignore this simple biomechanical approach.
Visceral massage by a trained therapist can certainly be temporarily beneficial.
There are a variety of effective natural colon cleanse programs. You won’t find out about them at Kaiser or your HMO. They don’t involve drugs or surgery; therefore insurance doesn’t cover them. Big surprise. There are several effective holistic cleanses, and most are herbal.
The simplest and safest formula that I have tested is an herbal blend called Expel. ( ORDER PRODUCTS ). No corrosives or irritants, with sufficient water intake, these herbs seem to unclog blockages for most people, usually with immediate results. To scrape away all the layers of impacted debris pasted onto the colon walls like stucco – that takes weeks or months. But the patients generally see immediate evidence that they’re working toward that goal with these herbs.
Another cleanse was devised by Dr. Richard Anderson of Mt. Shasta, California, who also has a detox clinic in Mexico. Dr. Anderson’s focus is to remove the Mucoid Plaque, the thin rubbery layer of old hardened mucus from the entire length of both the small and large intestines. Mucoid Plaque is well-documented in dozens of medical citations given throughout Dr. Anderson’s book.
My view is always towards convenience, simplicity, and working in complete holistic sync with the body, trying to restore patterns that have been lost. Build up the flora, begin a cleansing diet, and restore normal digestion and effortless elimination. No magic bullets here; for 60 days we need
1. Affix New West Diet to refrigerator door, with magnet, in a location of maximum guilt potential.
2. No dairy: pasteurized milk, cheese, butter, yoghurt, white dressings, creamy soups, ice cream.
3. No white sugar: cookies, donuts, soft drinks, candy, junky desserts
4. Eat a lot, but from the New West Diet. Never be hungry.
5. Drink 2 liters of water per day (not tap water).
6. Three whole food enzymes caps, three times a day.
(DigestAZyme — See Enzymes chapter)
7. First 60 days: 1-4 herbal cleansing caps per day. Go for max. (e.g., Expel – 408 298 1800)
8. Three – six Total Florabiotics caps per mealtime, — see Products)
9. Consider stopping all drugs, both prescription and over the counter
10. Get the lumbar spine adjusted.
That’s it. A 60-day colon detox. Doing part of it or your version of it will not do the trick. It’s an integral system.
THE HEALING CRISIS
Natural cures are different from drugs; first of all, drugs don’t cure anything, nor is that their intent. The focus of drugs is to cover up the symptoms. The underlying problem may remain, but so what? There’s always one more drug to try – that’s why there’s 12,000 of them on the market at any one time.
In an actual healing situation, especially one involving detox, there may be some new unpleasant symptoms that are the result of a temporary shifting back to normal. These include transient dizziness, disorientation, gas pains, or skin rashes. Holistic healers are quite familiar with the healing crisis, and generally regard it as a good sign that the body is responding and making a needed change.
In the example of colon detox, the body often protects itself from a toxin – drugs, chemicals, additives, etc – by encapsulating it in fat cells and mucoid layers. In this way toxins can remain for years in many areas of the body, including the colon, walled off and unable to do direct harm to the body. It’s a survival mechanism, well documented. Then when the person begins an herbal cleanse, these toxins may suddenly be liberated and re-enter the bloodstream as the protective encapsulations are broken down by the herbs. Slight dizziness or nausea may occur, but only for a short time. Unless they have been informed, patients unfamiliar with natural cures may become anxious and think ‘something is wrong,’ especially if they have lived their lives conditioned to take a drug for any and every symptom.
The best course of action is to drink several glasses of water in order to facilitate the cleansing of the blood. Many a morning hangover could have been avoided by the inebriate having drunk two glasses of water prior to passing out the night before. It’s the dehydration due to the high concentration of the toxic alcohol that brings on the “hair of the dog.” Same idea in colon detox. Look for that healing crisis. Don’t freak out. Everybody detoxes at a different rate. Just back off a little on the herbs for a day or so, and continue.
SBO AND JSH
The latest in the barrage of supplements which represent the explosive Junk Science Hustle are flora capsules containing “soil-based organisms.” Don’t be taken in by this scam. One of these SBO flora things boasts 38 strains of good bacteria. The implication is that here are 38 strains of normal flora found in the human colon, but closer examination reveals that only 5 of them have any possibility of being found in the human tract. The rest are found in rootlets of plants; ergo, SBOs. Now everyone knows that bacterial organisms are necessary in the rootlets of plants in order for mineral absorption from the soil into the plant. But it’s the farthest stretch of unsupported whim to try and equate soil bacteria with the ones that belong inside the human colon. This is ludicrous! Such bacteria cannot be thought of as probiotic. There are no legitimate studies whatsoever to support such a notion. Someone is capitalizing by taking an extract of barnyard dirt and pretending it has value in the human body. This is Alternative Marketing gone wild. Don’t fall for it.
Sometimes you might hear claims of fabulous cures from taking one of these colon cleanses that contains soil-based organisms. It is probable that such individuals were so toxic that the body was desperately craving any herbal triggers for release. Most SBO products contain some proportion of traditional herbal cleansers; so they obviously can have some beneficial effect. But such a patient is cleansed in spite of the SBOs, not because of them. It seems better advised to choose a product that only contains non-corrosive herbs, omitting the introduction of foreign microorganisms into the rarefied environs of the human colon.
LEVELS OF DETOX
How long should you detox? When will you know if you “got it all”?
Good question. My opinion is that initially, your goal is just to get yourself eliminating on a daily basis much more than what you’re accustomed to, but with no real discomfort. At some point, one day you will experience a catharsis, or major cleansing ejection. A few people get nervous when this happens and call the doctor, thinking their “brains have come out” or some other such illusion. Most will experience a feeling of lightness and clarity they haven’t had for years. That is the beginning of detox. At first I thought that this catharsis was the final goal of detox. But the more people I talked to and read about, I learned that there are many levels of detox. The initial catharsis is just the beginning. Like a geologist digging deeper into the earth to find prehistoric layers of rock, detoxification can gradually uncover and liberate deeper levels of preserved toxins within the colon, the fat cells, and elsewhere. Think back to your teenage years and your twenties and all the trashy foods you ate – years of toxification. If all that poison came out at once, the result would be death. The body won’t allow that to happen; gradual detox is a protective mechanism.
Even people who have extremely clean diets, who may be vegetarian and eat mostly raw foods, often go on routine fasts, colon programs, and liver cleanses and get surprising results. They are going for optimum clean blood – maximum purity of the biological terrain, just like in Dr. Carrel’s petri dish. This is the true objective of any detox program – excavate deep and bring the old debris out, level by level. Then keep it clean.
The rate of detox should be controlled so that extreme fatigue and prolonged nausea are avoided. What’s the hurry? Except for transient, momentary discomforts, a detox program should bring new energy and strength, almost immediately.
YOU KNOW IT DON’T COME EASY
For the average American, The Program is very difficult. For those with a colon problem, it’s almost impossible: Candida and other organisms are gonna crave their little milk and sugar fixes. But it’s counterproductive to think you can take some magic bullet like Intestinal Cleansing Formula and all your colon problems will be gone in a week. The only way that’s going to happen is when a lifestyle change, involving all the above steps, allows your body to heal itself.
If you actually follow The Program like your life depends upon it, it will. Such cleanses have been life-transforming, even for people the most serious conditions. After shaking the monkey, you’ll be free. The healthy body rejects any and all disease conditions. The body heals itself from the inside out, and yours is no exception. No matter how far gone you think you are, no matter how hopeless you’ve been told your condition is, no matter how long you’ve been like this, no matter what you’ve already tried, one fact is on your side: you’re just flesh and blood. Flesh and blood has to follow immutable biochemical laws. Not that we know what all these laws are. But your body knows. Just like in Alexis Carrel’s 28-year petri dish experiment, if you detox your cells, they will live.
Major forces are today being marshalled against your right to choose non-mainstream techniques like colon cleanses. You can do it; you just can’t learn about it. So who’s driving the bus here? Who controls the health of your body?
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