Listen to the Podcast
Cure Digestion and Melt Pounds with This Wonder Food (and it’s REAL), #49
Dr. Michael Ash goes into detail explaining the correlation between gut health and chronic illnesses. He provides some very good tips to prevent and reverse illnesses and talks about one very specific fruit we should all be consuming (and is probably sitting on every countertop in America right now). He’s scientifically explains everything, but in a way we can all understand.
What should we know about the mucosal immune system?
The vast majority of people in the world will die of inflammatory chronic illnesses. The primary mechanism for making those conditions develop is an up-regulation of the immune system. And the largest part of our immune system is the referred to mucosal immune system. In simple terms, it’s all the tissues in our body that are wet: eyes, mouth, lungs, gastrointestinal tract, liver and kidneys. All these have fluids over the surface performing roles. We share all the cells in them with creatures like bacteria, viruses, worms and sometimes parasites. Some are helpful and some are problematic.
The outside world reaches in to us primarily through the mucosal immune system. The better that system is to interpret the outside world, the more reliable we can be in terms of our health. The mucosal system is our body’s diplomat, taking charge and care of our body.
What can we do to prepare our mucosal immune system to be the best?
Look at our digestive tract first. What we are putting in our body is very important in terms of how our body is going to act. First what we eat is important. Consume foods that have messages that our body recognizes. And then, what we drink. If our system does not receive foods that our body recognizes (plant based foods grown in good soil), our body’s response is to produce inflammation, acting as a defense mechanism. Simply getting older we produce more inflammation. So we should consume counter regulatory defenses as we age.
So what foods should we consume?
Plant based foods carry messages that animal based foods do not. So the more plant based foods we consume, the better prepared our bodies will be.
Vegetables that are slightly bitter in their content are more densely packed with those keys that our immune system is looking for than those that are sweeter. Crunchy veggies like brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, parsnips, etc. which are stiff. Can be cooked or steamed, 3 to 4 times a week. These are remarkable! They are miraculous to our body to protect us against risk. If we don’t consume these foods, we can survive but we cannot survive effectively. Therefore, other risks and challenges to our immune system are much more difficult to turn off and take under control. This then manifests into chronic ill health like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, dementia, Alzheimer’s, eye dysfunction, problems of reproduction and lots of gastrointestinal issues (IBS, bloating, diarrhea, cancer).
Fruits that contain those good messages for our bodies, like the veggies mentioned above are apples. Eating apples can be medicinal. Cook them by cleaning them, peel, cut into cubes, drop in a pan and cook with cinnamon and raisins and water, simmer (about 6 apples), soften and loose shape but not completely disappear. Referred to as stewed apples or applesauce. You’ll see a gelatinous fluid called pectin. Pectin is a raw material for bacteria inside the gastrointestinal tract. When fed with pectin they manufacture fatty acids. The organisms look for the pectin and produce a substrate, the most powerful anti-inflammatory chemical a human can produce. A study done showed that consuming 3 apples a day was the same as taking 10 mg of prednisone in the treatment of inflammatory gut problems, preventing illnesses that can ultimately create cancer. Recommend 2 to 3 apples a day cooked, if you’re ill. For prevention, 1 a day. Raw is not the same as if it’s cooked. Make it for dessert and feed everyone!!
Get your FREE download here, Review Article: Is This a Perfect Functional Meal for Mucosal Tolerance, provided by Dr. Michael Ash to learn more about apples, the scientific rationale behind it, allergy protection, antibiotic impact, phenolic compounds, apple skins, inflammation control, the brain benefits, his applesauce recipe and more.
What other things can we do to prevent inflammation in our body?
Avoid additional sugars. Anything that has been refined, for example sugar, corn and other sources, the less you consume of them the lower your risk of developing long term chronic illness.
Vegetables and fruits can convey benefits. So can meat, it does have a role in humans, but make it grass fed proteins. The Mediterranean style diet receives high votes because statistically it proves to be successful.
Fats comes in many forms. Simplistically, fat has been vilified and is wrong. There are fats that will never find success in human health. But high quality fats will benefit the health of our brain. Our diet should contain a reasonable quantity, which is a conversation for another day altogether.
Two ways to identify the consumption of probiotics.
- Ecological consumption is when you just pick up something at the store with a mix of strains.
- When a type of organism, species and strain are identified to treat a certain type of illness.
Many studies have clearly shown that even if you just use a healthy strain of probiotic, you generally enjoy some improvement in overall health, by reducing inflammation. If we’re over the age of 40, it is most advantageous to consume probiotics.
What are the benefits or probiotics?
There are 7 things that probiotics do for our health. Dr. Ash spends some time explaining what these all are, as well as the dosage recommended based on body size and age.
About Dr. Michael Ash:
Michael Ash DO, ND, BSc, DipION was in full time clinical practice for 25 years during which time he founded and developed the largest Integrative Medicine practice in the south west of England, incorporating the philosophy of functional medicine from 1991 onward. He is no longer in full time practice having sold his practice in 1997, but devotes time to research, writing and the management of complex immune mediated illnesses through the application of natural and pharmaceutical interventions. He has specialised in the role of the wet tissues (such as the gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts) in human health for over 20 years, through the application of food and lifestyle based interventions aimed at the remediation of dysfunctional bacterial communities and associated tissues essential to a healthy mucosal immune system. The manipulation and alteration of these commensal bacteria and tissues through changes in medicine and lifestyles over the last 100 years has seen a profound move away from acute infectious diseases to more chronic complex illnesses. The changing microbial landscape including decreased diversity and loss of key stone species and their associated impact on the creation of non-resolving inflammation are increasingly causally linked to many of our burgeoning health problems. An author, researcher and presenter with skills in business development as well as clinical care, he has also been an adjunct member of the Institute for Functional Medicine’s faculty for many years, and provides a unique set of insights into the application of often complex and intersecting immune patterns for the resolution and restoration of loss of homeostasis within the framework of analytical and clinical application.
Links and Resources
- Visit www.clinicaleducation.org to find more information about Dr. Ash’s studies, and search “apples” to learn more about the benefits of apples.
- Dr. Ash’s recommended books:
- Dr. Ash’s Favorite Music:
- If you missed it, listen in on our last podcast episode: Real Stuff: Nutrient Therapies Treating Chronic Disease, #48