Did you know that about 80% of our immune system is in our intestinal lining? I said after the last post that I would follow up on the importance of insulin yet at this time we need to focus on our immune systems.
Stress can come in the form of excessive worry and things such as eating processed food. Both of these have a profound effect on our immune system through our gut/intestinal lining.
Gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT)[is a component of the mucosa-associated (gut lining) lymphoid tissue (MALT) which works in the immune system to protect the body from invasion in the gut.
So it really does matter what we eat because there are foods that heal the gut through the proliferation of good bacteria – and foods that can hurt the gut by feeding bad or pathogenic bacteria. Good bacteria feeds on good fibrous food (mainly vegetables and fruit aka prebiotics) and bad bacteria feeds on things such as sugar and processed carbohydrates to name two of many.
To clarify some lingo: Probiotics are good bacteria you take in pill form. Fermented food and drinks are probiotics in food form. Prebiotics are the fiber we eat through a healthy diet.
The average healthy person doesn’t think about insulin. In my experience most people who think about insulin are diabetic. Yet I cannot stress enough the importance of understanding insulin for everyone who wants to live a long and healthy life without chronic illness.
Insulin is the hormone that makes glucose available to our cells for energy – to make it very simple. High blood sugar is an insulin issue for example. The more carbohydrates (grains, sugar) we eat the harder insulin has to work and if we are continually eating carbs then the insulin becomes resistant or overworked and stops doing its job properly.
There are many undesirable effects from insulin resistance. It would be very good for your health to understand this system better so that you can make food choices that support blood sugar balance and insulin function.
My functional medicine mentor, Chris Kresser – has many articles on optimal health on his website so I will share one with you now….
In my personal experience, and that of many of my patients, when we get strong – especially core strength – we have less daily discomfort and less aggravating neck and back pain and stiffness.
Be Smart Train Smart
Yes, regardless of whether you have herniations, bulges etc. If you have had images taken of your spine and you have visible “damage” you CAN still lead a healthy and pain-free life IF you take great care of yourself and monitor yourself well. Always consult your doctor first.
Most importantly, listen to your body. Don’t let any back pain go on for too long (more than a day) without addressing it by any means you know works for you. Resting, stretching, taking a warm bath….there are many ways to find relief. Yet, getting strong is a good way to prevent back pain from recurring.
Core strength is key. Safely strengthening is also key. If strength training is done improperly and without good quality supervision – especially at the start – then more harm than good will be done.
Many people resist strength training – for various reasons – yet I know for sure that when done well it can relieve much back and neck pain. So if you REALLY want to feel better it is worth the time, effort and money. WELL worth it.
Strength training with a qualified trainer has given me years of comfort after 20 years of pain. Many of my patients and friends have also felt dramatic relief from sciatica to broken back pain through core strength training.
I recommend a trainer who uses MedX machines (or any very stabilizing method) and the training is one on one. This will ensure proper and safe progression.
Call me at 561-350-8406 for specific recommendations of safe trainers.