Functions of the colon and probiotics

This page gives you more information on the importance of the colon and probiotics, this we can discuss during your colonic irrigation treatment as well and if you have any questions we are happy to answer them 0191 222 0100.

The colon

Your colon, or large intestine, is a hollow, tube-like organ made up of muscle tissue that moves toxic materials along by wave-like motions known as peristaltic action, from the caecum, the beginning of the large bowel, to the rectum. It is approximately five feet long. Some people are constipated but many more do not realise that each day they are not passing all their waste material. Most colons hold onto some waste and a lot gets stuck on the colon walls when it is passing through. The walls of the colon can become packed or lined with accumulated wastes from extended periods of intestinal overloading due to avoidance of responding to the "call of nature" immediately. The colon can neither absorb nor eliminate properly in this condition. When wastes from the blood arrive at the inner wall of the colon, the old hardened waste prevents their passage through its wall. To ensure proper cleansing of body tissue, we must begin with a thorough cleansing of the bowel. It took time to pollute our bodies; therefore it will take time to reverse this process through a series of body cleansings.

The natural immune system can only be built up in a clean body, with a minimal amount of accumulated toxic material. The degree to which the colon is inhabited by harmful bacteria, parasites and other dangerous organisms varies greatly among individuals. Remember! Cancer of the colon ranks next to heart disease as the most frequent cause of death in Western society today.

Bowel cleansing

Keeping the bowels clean and moving is a major step in regaining our health since the bowels are crucial in the elimination of toxins, especially those processed by the liver. [The liver dumps in to the bowel via the gall bladder].

Constipation is a national pastime and slow bowels are more common today than years previous. For one thing, people not only ate better 100 years ago, they were more active and went outdoors more. When the bowels slow down, toxins are not eliminated, are reabsorbed and carried back to the liver for recycling and elimination. Reabsorbed bile salts have been linked to increased cholesterol levels; therefore, cholesterol is a major indicator of constipation. Also, when the bowels get slow and toxin levels increase, the pathogenic microorganisms grow to out-number the normal flora causing dysbiosis. Although flora is needed to correct this, it is the clogged bowels that are the major problem. When the bowels move again, everything else will fall into order.

Our endocrine glands that control metabolism are also involved; since it is our thyroid that controls metabolism and metabolism in turn affects how our bowels are functioning.

Frequent bowel movements mean better toxin elimination and better health. It makes sense that if one can eliminate toxins their health will improve.

Colon dysfunction

Colon problems are usually first recognised by an individual in the form of constipation or diarrhoea. The normal colour of your stool is honey golden brown and has no offensive odour. With constipation however, you may observe a darkening of the stool, due to the longer transition time in your system. The colon will distribute the poisons of decay, fermentation and purification into the blood.

The symptoms of colon dysfunction can include:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Bloated stomach
  • Indigestion
  • Headaches
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Overweight
  • Craving for food
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Insomnia
  • Bad breath
  • Menstrual problems
  • Swelling of the legs
  • Asthma
  • Backache
  • Poor appetite
  • Acne and skin problems
  • Abdominal discomfort

A toxic bowel is the source of many health problems. By stripping down the old, toxic mucus lining of the bowel, we remove the number one source of disease in the body. In addition, we open up the bowel to a more efficient means of waste elimination and nutrient absorption, both of which are essential to any lasting healing process. It is significant to understand the importance of bowel care in the prevention of disease.

What do probiotics do?

A probiotic is an organism which contributes to the health and balance of the intestinal tract. A probiotic is also referred to as the "friendly", "beneficial", or "good" bacteria which when ingested acts to maintain a healthy intestinal tract and help fight illness and disease.

A healthy lower intestine should contain at least 85% friendly bacteria to prevent the over colonisation of disease causing micro-organisms like E. coli and salmonella. Our colon can maintain its health with 15% unfriendly bacteria, if the body contains at least 85% probiotic friendly bacteria. Most people have this percentage reversed.

The word "probiotic" simply means 'for life' which explains why these nutrients are so important. If you want the proper scientific definition of a probiotic here it is: "a live microbial feed supplement, which beneficially affects the host by improving its intestinal microbial balance"

New research is establishing how important the supplementation of probiotics can be for a variety of conditions. Probiotics enhance the immune system altering the gut micro-ecology and preventing unfriendly organisms from gaining a foothold in the body. They prevent the overgrowth of yeast and fungus and produce substances that can lower cholesterol.

Probiotics are widely recommended for the treatment of candida - a fungal infection - because they establish large, healthy populations of friendly bacteria that compete with the candida that is trying to take up residence in the intestine. Probiotics are also essential in the treatment and prevention of thrush, vaginal yeast infections, and athlete's foot. Good health depends fundamentally upon the more than 400 types of friendly, symbiotic bacteria that inhabit the digestive tract.

Why do we need probiotics?

The Western diet is low in fibre and high in processed and refined foods, chlorinated drinking water, alcohol, stress, disease and the use of antibiotics in food production as well as in medical treatments, alongside many other allopathic drugs can wreak havoc in the gastrointestinal tract by destroying good bacteria and allowing undesirable bacteria to multiply. When the ratio of good bacteria to bad is lowered, problems begin to arise such as excessive gas, bloating, constipation, intestinal toxicity and poor absorption of nutrients.

While it's true that non-beneficial bacteria are naturally occurring in the intestinal tract, problems begin when their growth goes unchecked and probiotics play an especially important role in keeping in check the pathogenic bacteria that cause disease.

A good probiotic supplement will contain millions and millions of live bacteria to bolster and replenish levels of the health promoting good bugs in your digestive tract. Once there, these probiotic reinforcements join forces with the existing friendly bacteria to help inhibit the growth of more harmful microbes.

This, in turn, will help improve digestion and absorption of your food and stimulate and support the immune system.

Here's a summary of what probiotics can do:

  • Inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria that cause digestive stress
  • Improve digestion of food and absorption of vitamins
  • Stimulate the body's natural defence mechanism - the immune system
  • Help make vitamins needed by the body
  • Help the colon to push and contract evacuating the bowel

Why are probiotic supplements necessary?

The answer is that while it is true that certain foods - especially live yogurt, Japanese Miso, Tempeh and some cheeses have a probiotic action in the gut, you can never be sure what strain of bacteria you are eating or exactly how much is contained in these foods. There is no way of knowing just how many of those replacement bacteria are going to survive and make it all the way through the acidic and bug-killing environment of the stomach to the colon.

There are other foods, such as bananas, garlic and onions, which can also help repopulate levels of the good bacteria in the intestine. But we do not yet know how many you need to eat for the best results and, you can only eat so much garlic in a day! The best way of increasing the good bacteria in your digestive system is to take a probiotic supplement. A good probiotic supplement contains millions of live bacteria we sell one here at Central Healthcare with the recommended amount of good bacteria. Some supplements have fewer live bacteria and are not as effective as others.

It is not necessary to have a course of probiotics just because you have had a colonic but may be wise if you want to help attain good health. For those who are constipated or suffer from irritable bowel syndrome the nurse will recommend a course of probiotic bacteria as they have been shown to help both conditions.

Your colonic treatment washes out some good bacteria but this is not a problem as they start to multiply again in their natural environment. The colonic is effective at washing out harmful bacteria which in most people are dominant so there is no need to be concerned about a colonic removing your good bacteria.

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