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A list of the most common complaints I have seen in my practice these past several years include: headaches, allergies, skin diseases like eczema, acne, cellulite, weight gain, gas, bloating, heartburn, low energy, menstrual disorders, chronic fatigue, pain, arthritis, or a list of generalized complaints that don’t seem to fit together but are worsening for the patient.

It has always been my goal as a doctor to work on the cause of the problem, rather than suppressing symptoms. So why is it that for so many people with complaints from the above list, do I first work on their digestive system? This is because, every time I treat the digestion, the original complaints either resolve without any other therapies, or greatly improve, enabling the next course of treatments to be more effective.

Why is this?

Unfortunately, our diet contains many processed foods with virtually no nutritional value and inadequate fiber. Chemicals in foods like: pesticides, herbicides, hormones, colors, and preservatives can disrupt the luminal enzymes and the absorptive surface of our digestive system. This blocks the absorption of food nutrients, slows metabolism (weight gain), and slows or inhibits proper digestion. (This is also a perfect place for yeast and other unwanted organisms like parasites or opportunistic pathogens to live.)

Additionally, 60% of the body’s total immune system & more than 80% of the Immune globulin (Ig) producing blasts & plasma cells are located in and around the GI tract. Disruption of the GI contents will obviously affect the ability of these protective elements to properly function. This process contributes to many states of chronic disease and immune deficiency.

Consider what would it be like if you left the kitchen trash in a bag under the sink for weeks or years? It would be putrid and rotten and emit chemicals that would be toxic. When our waste sits in our guts, the same thing happens, but it happens in our bodies. The chemicals produced by stagnant waste can then be absorbed into the bloodstream and move throughout the tissues of the body.

This process is referred to as Autointoxication – literally the insidious poisoning of the self by the self.

Chemicals, produced by waste that absorb from our digestive system affect the skin because the skin is our largest secondary organ of elimination. In disorders of the skin, these toxic elements stress the skin itself as it tries to eliminate them in our sweat (By the way, more than one pound of waste leaves our skin daily in sweat.) Also, the fat layer under the skin is an excellent storage place for fat-soluble toxins that the body just cannot get rid of. This storage is a major contribution to the look of cellulite in the fat layer.

Aches and pains, arthritis inflammation, headaches, and allergies, can all be affected by this process of autointoxication or the movement of toxic chemicals produced in the stagnant digestive system ending up in the brain, joints, tissues or muscles.

Health begins on the inside of your body. The nutrients for your hair, skin, nails, everything on the outside is built by the nutrients we absorb in our food. Youth, vibrancy, energy and good metabolism are all a function of a healthy digestive system, which can break down the food, absorb the nutrients, and properly eliminate the waste of digestion.

Our bodies have an amazing capacity to tolerate challenges, but not a limitless capacity. Caring for yourself in a holistic manner means strengthening from the inside out, treating your whole body and finding the cause of the problem, not merely suppressing the symptoms you may have.