Anti-Inflammatory Diet

All health care starts with diet. My recommendations for a healthy diet are here:
Anti-Inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle.
There are over 190 articles on diet, inflammation and disease on this blog
(find topics using search [upper left] or index [lower right]), and
more articles by Prof. Ayers on Suite101 .

Monday, December 23, 2013

Dr. Oz’s Pain: Constipation and Bursitis

Dr. Oz has complained several times about his constipation and the pain he feels in his shoulders during surgery.  He has recommended numerous treatments.  Since I feel a friendly affection toward Mehmet after talking/shouting at his image on the screen for hours, I think that I should give him some advice to relieve his pain.

Hot, Cold, Topical Treatments Are Effective, but Don’t Penetrate Themselves
Dr. Oz keeps talking about how various topical applications penetrate the skin.  He has even recommended the use of an electrical system to carry pain relieving steroids into his tissue by what looks to be electrophoresis.  This is dubious.  I would recommend that he stick to the topical chemicals, e.g. capsaicin, menthol, that target the hot and cold sensors of the superficial layers of the skin and result in deep penetrating nerve signals that trigger anti-inflammatory responses in the underlying bursa.

Constipation Is Caused by Damaged Gut Flora or Dysbiosis
Dr. Oz, like most physicians, does not usually explain the causes of diseases, such as bursitis.  Unfortunately, when he tries to explain problems, such as constipation, he overlooks important aspects of the problem for a facile physical model.  In the case of bursitis, it is important to realize that the patient, Dr. Oz, is also constipated.  Constipation can be aggravated by dehydration or “holding it”, but in Dr. Oz’s case, the combination of bursitis, an autoimmune disease, with constipation (and gas) suggests the more complete explanation of dysbiosis or damaged gut flora.  Dysbiosis is what causes constipation, because bowel stools, poop, is mostly packed, hydrated bacteria that grow in the colon by digesting soluble fiber.  If you eat an apple a day, there is enough pectin and other plant polysaccharides, i.e. soluble fiber, to increase the volume of the stools to make one regular.  [Don’t be confused by the misconception promoted by Dr. Oz that the volume of stools results from insoluble fiber, such as in whole grains.  The husk part of whole grains is useless or unhealthy and grains in general are not needed for a healthy diet.]  

Flush Toilet Hero
Dr. Oz’s constipation suggests a damaged gut flora.  Since he is a physician, one would suspect that he has used antibiotics in the past few years and wiped out essential types of gut bacteria.  Dr. Oz probably followed his own advice and attempted to patch up his damaged gut flora with probiotics.  Unfortunately, as I have repeatedly explained, dairy probiotics don’t survive in the gut and cannot repair damaged gut flora.  But Dr. Oz is even harder on his gut flora.  He has recommended the use of colloidal silver throat spray when he has been exposed contagious germs.  Silver, although ineffective for its intended use, is very toxic to gut flora after it is swallowed.  Dr. Oz also subscribes to numerous approaches to house and body hygiene, which are probably occupational hazards for surgeons.  Hygiene is the enemy when it comes to ingesting bacteria lost to antibiotics.  The atomizing flush toilet is my gut flora hero for spreading contagious health.

Damaged Gut Flora = Damaged Immune System
Constipation is bad enough, but damaged gut flora can mean that some of the bacteria needed for the gut-based development of cells regulatory T-cells (Tregs) that keep the immune system under control, are missing.  Constipation can lead to deficient Tregs and that means a major predisposition to autoimmune disease and allergies.  [Fecal transplants cure autoimmune diseases and allergies.]  Antibiotics, silver, hygiene excesses and constipation suggest to me that Dr. Oz has been cruising toward some rude immunological sequelae.

Autoimmunity Results From Antibiotics, Dysbiosis and Compromised Tregs
Autoimmune diseases result when a trifecta of inflammation, compromised Tregs and appropriate antigens occurs.  Normally physical damage, such as abusive shoulder exercise, results in inflammation as the first step in healing.  The inflammation can rev up the immune cells in the local area of tissue damage and some of the proteins, such as lubricin, which lubricates the bursa, may have basic triplet amino acid sequences that lead to presentation to immune system cells.  But no antibodies against self tissues are produced, because the Tregs stop the process.  Healthy gut flora produce healthy Tregs and block autoimmunity.

Dr. Oz abuses his shoulder bursa during surgery, but it can’t heal properly, because he has damaged his gut flora and compromised his Tregs.  The result is the autoimmune bursitis from which he now suffers.  He can reduce the symptoms and inflammation with topical anti-inflammatory natural chemicals, but he needs to repair his gut flora to repair his Tregs and reduce autoimmunity.  In the mean time, he is contaminating his local environment, family and friends with his unhealthy bacteria.  I wonder if Dr. Oz’s friend, Dr. Mike Roizen also suffers from autoimmune diseases?

Prescription to Repair Gut FloraAnti-Inflammatory Diet, Soluble Fiber, Fermented Vegetables, Less Hygiene



Unknown said...

His real issue is his his poor vegetarian diet. But that is another story of why his gut microbiome and quorum sensing is destroyed while he disrupts his circadian entrainment in surgery.

Puddleg said...

the late Papa Smurf, who famously overdosed on colloidal silver (which turned his skin blue-grey) claimed that this produced rapid relief from arthritis and other pains - an effect consistent with it killing of swathes of a disordered gut biome.
For some people this is probably a desirable effect, if not perhaps a sustainable one.

M said...

It's the first time I'm hearing that auto-immune diseases are contagious.

Dr. Art Ayers said...

Vegetarian is sustainable if an appropriate gut flora is assembled and the diet is not to varied. A pure carnivore diet also can be healthy with an appropriate gut flora, since connective tissue has plenty of glycosaminoglycans that can act as soluble fiber. But I agree that in this case, the autoimmune symptoms are a giveaway of an unhealthy diet/gut flora combination that is shortening Oz's life.

I agree that silver can suppress autoimmune symptoms the same way that antibiotics can, by wiping out the gut flora responsible for the immune attack in addition to suppressive Tregs. [ Oz as Pale
Smurf is very funny.]

Autoimmune diseases have very minor genetic hereditary contributions, but since people inherit their eating patterns and gut flora from family and pets, family history is important to reveal the contribution of gut flora to autoimmune diseases. Gut flora is at least ten times more important than genes from relatives. Unfortunately physicians get this confused and still think that genetics is a significant contribution to major diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer's or obesity. Thus, fecal transplants to treat diseases should not be from family members.

Thanks for the comments.

M said...

It's common sense that certain diseases run in families because unhealthy habits are passed down from parents to children. It's quite another thing, however, to say that someone who suffers from auto-immunity then goes on to contaminate their local environment, family and friends with their unhealthy bacteria, even if they have hygienic habits - which apparently worsens their condition!

It would seem they are doomed either way: if they have good hygiene habits it makes them sicker, if they're unhygienic they spread around bacteria, making everyone else around them sick with the same disease.

I certainly hope this isn't the case. If such a view became mainstream it would be used to ostracize the sick and be seen as a good reason to deny them of a job due to public health concerns.

Dr. Art Ayers said...

I agree, but see no need to worry.

I think that health dominates and the impact of unhealthy gut flora is minimized by healthy hygiene that focuses on gathering new sources of gut flora from live fermented food, rather than unhealthy hygiene that focuses on killing bacteria with antibacterial treatments (silver, antibiotics, bleach, alcohol, etc.)

People who are sick should avoid spreading pathogens and they should focus on repairing their gut flora as a major part of their healing effort. Medical care people should be conscious of their exposure to pathogens and unhealthy gut flora. Dr. Oz has ignored the unhealthy gut flora that he has picked up and he has avoided repair by unhealthy hygiene.

Sick people can be cured by exposure to healthy people and a supportive diet. The diet that Dr. Oz recommends is also unhealthy, because it is too low in saturated fats, too high in omega-6 vegetable oils and contains unnecessary whole grains. Antioxidants and phytochemicals should be replaced with with local fermented foods as sources of gut flora. I want Dr. Oz to tell everyone to keep the lid off.

Thanks for the comments.

M said...

Everyone, both the sick and the healthy, spread pathogenic bacteria when they fail to follow fundamental rules of hygiene, like washing their hands, etc. It is not a problem of the chronically ill. But singling out the auto-immune clearly makes them seem especially dangerous.

As you yourself say, eating fermented foods gets beneficial bacteria in your gut, without the danger of getting ill I might add. It's self-evidently dangerous and non-sensical to admonish people to forego hygiene in the hopes that some beneficial bacteria maight get through the dirt along with pathogenic ones. I hope no one reading your post takes that chance, in the name of health or for any other reason.

It seems contradictory to say that Dr. Oz may have picked up bad bacteria (because he wasn't careful enough? Due to bad hygiene habits, even though he is a doctor?), and then to advise him to forego hygiene and even go so far as to say he ought to brush his teeth with a brush contaminated by airborne feces. His own, diseased feces, presumably, as people tend to keep their toothbrush at home.

I predict that anyone healthy you talk to about this matter will tell you that they have no intention of exposing themselves knowingly to contagiously sick people on the off chance that their own beneficial bacteria might help the sick to improve. That if that possibility exists it can go both ways, and hardly anyone is that self-sacrificing.

Also, advocating that sick people (who thanks to you now know that what they were taught was a genetic disorder is actually a contagious disease) should expose themselves on purpose and as much as possible to healthy people, in the hopes they'll get healthier, even as they understand that this might make the healthy sick, could be construed by some as irresponsible and selfish advice.

I can imagine a parent arguing in court that they want full custody of the couple's children because the auto-immune, sick parent of the two poses a health risk to their children's health, and what's worse they knew of this, and should therefore be denied any contact with their own kids.

Martin said...

M - As Dr. Ayers has already said, he is painting in very broad strokes. Also, he is talking about aspects of an ideal world, which we may or may not experience in the next few years.

For someone with such radical and far-reaching ideas, it's entertaining how Dr. Ayers isn't choosing even more provocative words and examples. The potential for blowing up at least some of our current moral standards and taboos is enormous.

Dr. Art Ayers said...

Thanks for the clarification.

From my perspective, pathogenic bacteria are relatively rare and immunologically impaired people are common in the US. Feces from the vast majority of healthy people will not make people who are not immunologically compromised sick. In fact those people who are healthy are exposed to numerous pathogens without ill effects. In most cases, except where broadcasting rare pathogens would be a problem, as in restaurants, hand washing is cosmetic.

I must apologize for blurring my concepts with the complex case of Dr. Oz. I did not intend to suggest that he was contagious because he had autoimmune diseases, but rather that his gut flora was not attractive because he carries hospital strains of pathogens.

I consider the gut flora of the autoimmune to be a modified subset of the bacterial strains in a healthy person. Antibiotics remove species and simplify the diverse community of hundreds of species present in a healthy person. [Also remember that the prevalent horizontal exchange of DNA in biofilms means that new species are created on a daily basis in the gut.] This means that the autoimmune have less to donate and are only a problem if someone else is dependent on their diversity for their health. Thus, it would be unhealthy for a baby to be hygienically isolated and exposed only to the gut flora of someone with an autoimmune disease.

I think that Dr. Oz probably has superb sterile technique in the operating room, but doctors are notorious for not washing hands between patients. I would not consider Dr. Oz's interactions with people on camera to be hygienically pristine. I merely suggest that because Dr. Oz shows signs of a compromised immune system and damaged gut flora, he is at increased risk of harboring contagious pathogens and I would wash my hands after shaking his hand and would feel more comfortable if he wore a mask.

Spread of an infectious disease in a healthy population is slow, whereas spread of opportunistic pathogens in hospitals can be rapid. I would say that kissing small children and dogs that have been playing in the soil is healthy, but is not recommended for the immunologically compromised. It is safer to start with fermented foods beyond dairy.

The medical community does not understand gut flora in health and disease, and has not established protocols for healing gut flora after exposure to antibiotics. Hygiene is no longer a means of avoiding exposure to pathogens, but rather it now serves to isolate individuals with impaired gut flora from sources of the healthy bacteria that they lack.

An example of medical ignorance is assuming that the temporary use of dairy probiotics will repair antibiotic damaged gut flora, when these bacterial species do not persist in the adult gut.

It is estimated that about 5% of breast cancer is due to BRCA, which compromises normal repair of damaged DNA. I would say that inherited genetic alleles contribute to less than 10% of breast cancer cases. I would also add that gut flora was a major contributor to the remaining 90%. Other diseases are similar. Diet and gut flora are the predominant factors in disease.

Please note that the diseases that I am talking about are not infectious like HIV or malaria, or genetic like sickle cell anemia, even though diet and gut flora are also important in the course of these diseases.

Thank you for your comments. I intend to provide controversial ideas, because I think that standard medical advice and diets are making us sick. I do, however claim that my ideas are rational and science-based, so if my words do not seem so, I perhaps miscommunicate or I have not yet seen the error of my ways. Science makes sense, but medicine is authority-based and is just what is practiced.

Anonymous said...

Another great article. About live fermented foods, I've read that some fermented foods are better than others? Kombucha was singled out as producing 'wild' bacteria with questionable health results? Also, if a stool analysis came back with no growth for Lactobacillus and Escherichia coli, how concerned would you be?

Mrs. Ed said...

Dr. Ayers,

I haven't had a chance to read your blog in a long time. I see you are still enjoying writing about Dr Oz.(can I liken it to Joan Rivers talking about Gweneth Paltrow...heehee). I followed your blog for years and I don't think gut flora and diet can be emphasized enough, so I am glad to see you are still doing it. My son is doing great, his autism was gut flora and diet related. I am beginning to think stress is a bad one too. I've been dealing with alot stress and it seems to flair the autoimmune issues, although much milder than before the diet changes. I wonder how much stress affects the gut flora.

I hope you are having a Merry Christmas!

Georg. H said...

Hello Dr Ayers,

Do you think chronic inflammation can hinder muscle growth ? I read somewhere that muscles grow after accute inflammatory response, and that chronic inflammation could create "noise" and decrease muscle growth.

Also, what type of foods would you suggest in a hypercaloric, muscle growth oriented diet ? usually bodybuilders use grains, do you think it's possible to do so without it ?

As a med student, it's great to hear from you and your independent point of view, I'd like to say thank you for this blog !

Raj said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dr. Art Ayers said...

Mrs. Ed,
So good to hear from you. Merry Christmas.

I am glad that some changes in diet have helped your family. I am perplexed that your bio on your site has not changed to reflex your return to good health -- you had a long list of maladies.

I would also like to ask about your experience in rebuilding the corporate gut flora in your family. What worked and what did you use as guide posts? Most of the links on your site focus on elimination of trigger foods, but my perspective suggests that the answer is introducing new species of bacteria. I would enjoy hearing your insights from personal experience.

Thanks again for your comments.

Dr. Art Ayers said...

George H.,
As I try to remember to point out, inflammation is a cycle that should proceed from the production of inflammatory cytokines to a resolution and return to healthy physiology.

Chronic inflammation represents a disruption of the cycle and continuous production of inflammatory signals and symptoms.

The inflammatory cycle is seen in muscle growth in response to challenge. Low level chronic inflammation may enhance muscle growth and more inflammation may inhibit growth and result in damage. I think that chronic inflammation is the only environment in which connective and supporting tissues can exhibit wear and tear, otherwise there should be no long term wear associated with physical activity.

The foundation for all bodybuilding should be an anti-inflammatory diet and grains for most people would be counter-productive. I would anticipate that maintaining glycogen without high blood sugar or elevated insulin would be a goal. Others are more knowledgeable than my guesses.

As a med student, I hope that you have read the hundred other articles that I have posted on biochemical topics that are essential to medicine, but are missed in medical school.

Thanks for your comments.

Dr. Art Ayers said...

Hi Raj.
I thought that you asked about geophagy previously. I think that my answer was vague and I wanted to avoid the subject, because eating any real world sources of bacteria can be problematic for immunocompromised people. It is also possible to encounter rare pathogens or parasites. I can't recommend anything that might be harmful or sound like medical advice.

I think that the best answer is to eat your own homegrown fermented vegetables and avoid antibiotics. Your gut will regulate and compose a bacterial community that stimulates Treg production. Unfortunately medical interests will hinder simple solutions to repairing gut flora.

Look at my hippo article on the home page for suggestions on repairing gut flora and increasing Tregs.

Thanks for your comments.

Mrs. Ed said...

Dr. Ayers,

Yes, my blog is in a bit of disrepair. I am a new teacher and I'm hoping to have time this summer to update it. In the meantime I have been slowly working on a cookbook. I think getting my son to eat more raw vegetables was a big step in the right direction. Espcially raw leafy greens. It took a long time to get him to do that. Apples and leafy greens are a daily thing. Also, if he's been playing outside in the dirt and then wants a snack, he doesn't wash his hands. (If we've been in public during cold and flu season or just visit a nursing home that is another story). That won't make me sound like mother of the year, but this year was the first time in years he has missed school for an illness. We take vitamin C, multivitamin, cod liver oil, probiotics, and alpha lipoic acid daily, and once a week magnesium (for him). I also eat homemade femented foods myself (I can't get him to touch them yet). And I drink kombucha daily. It took a few years for me to be able to handle friendly yeasts (like those in kombucha). I also think a big factor was TIME. I think our bodies needed time to heal while following a good diet. A strict SCD diet for a few years, and then took a couple years of slowly adding more things to his diet. We still stay away from many additives, very limited sugar, and so on. If I stray too far I can notice right away with my own body, I get a woozy sensation, like my body is immediately telling me something, very strange but keeps me in check.

Mrs. Ed said...

Oh, and about three years ago we did a biofilm treatment for one month suggested by a doctor (not a manistream one). It was a strange experience (major hand flapping, but then another improvement and overnight improvement with his hand writing). That was the only out of the ordinary thing tried.

Raj said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hi Dr. Ayers,
Just wondering what kind of homemade fermented foods you eat, and if you could share any recipes. I like the idea, but don't know where to start. Thank you!

Alix said...

Dr. Art,

I've been following your blog for a few years now. I suffer from digestive issues (constipation/gas), joint pain and a multitude of food sensitivities and allergies. These symptoms began after I took antibiotics in 2007. I am now only able to eat 6 different foods because all others cause issues for me. I am unable to have any fermented foods because of my sensitivity to histamines (i break out in a very bad rash).

I would like to have a fecal transplant done but would rather have it done by someone with experience rather than do it myself via an enema (which may be less effective than the hospital setting alternatives that would reach further into the digestive system).

I live in Nova Scotia, Canada and haven't been able to find anyone who does fecal transplants to patients if they haven't been diagnosed with C. Diff or colitis. Do you know who I could contact to get a fecal transplant done (US or Canada) and what other things I could try to help my condition?

Thank you for any information that you can provide. If you want to e-mail me you can at:

Unknown said...

congratulations guys, quality information you have given!!!

Unknown said...

I wonder how persistent gut flora is and what it takes to affect it in a meaningful way. I thought that probiotic pills were not as effective as fermented foods, dirt or the anti-inflammatory diet, but I assumed that they yielded some measurable changes wrt gut flora composition.

This study shows that the effect of probiotics on the composition of gut flora is negligible, even though it is beneficial for IBS symptoms.

Gut microbiota is not modified by Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Trial of VSL#3 in Diarrhea-predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Michail S, Kenche H.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common condition that negatively impacts the quality of life for many individuals. The exact etiology of this disorder is largely unknown; however, emerging studies suggest that the gut microbiota is a contributing factor. Several clinical trials show that probiotics, such as VSL#3, can have a favorable effect on IBS. This double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled study has been conducted in diarrhea-predominant IBS subjects in order to investigate the effect of VSL#3 on the fecal microbiota. The bacterial composition of the fecal microbiota was investigated using high-throughput microarray technology to detect 16S RNA. Twenty four subjects were randomized to receive VSL#3 or placebo for 8 weeks. IBS symptoms were monitored using GSRS and quality of life questionnaires. A favorable change in Satiety subscale was noted in the VSL #3 groups. However, the consumption of the probiotic did not change the gut microbiota. There were no adverse events or any safety concerns encountered during this study. To summarize, the use of VSL#3 in this pilot study was safe and showed improvement in specific GSRS-IBS scores in diarrhea-predominant IBS subjects. The gut microbiota was not affected by VSL#3 consumption suggesting that the mechanism of action is not directly linked to the microbiota.

This is of interest to me because one of my twin boys literally fell apart before he turned two and is now severely autistic. His diagnosis came with no explanations or insights for why this devastating regression took place. His eeg, mri and bloodwork were normal (even though white blood cells and vitamin d were marginally low; he now also has a high igg response to gluten and host of other foods as well as an autoimmune reaction to strep).

His grandmother who is riddled with autoimmune conditions helped us take case of the kids and I wonder if she endowed him with her pathogenic gut flora which was a contributing factor in his regression.

If it were, I am not sure where we can really change his gut flora (he is now 6)enough to alleviate his condition. We have been doing the anti-inflammatory diet for about 8 months now with modest success. Probiotic pills make him nuts for weeks. Water kefir is ok, but again, is not life changing.

Marybeth said...

I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and take Minocycline 100 mg MWF. I tried diet alone but was not getting much relief. I follow pretty much a Paleo diet. I do take Probiotics, Opticleanse, GI Revive, Fish Oil, KappArest, Vitamin C and magnesium. I make my own coconut milk kefir and add a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil everyday to it.I also swish every morning with coconut oil. My fraternal grandmother had RA also. I would love to get off the antibiotics but am wary about more symptoms as I have my RA pretty much undercontrol. Should I increase my fermented food?

Dr. Art Ayers said...

Your comments about diet to help your arthritis are perplexing, because you are taking Minocyclin, a broad spectrum, long lasting antibiotic that destroys gut flora and has the side effect of damaging the immune system.

As I see it, at some point you severely damaged the suppressive part of your immune system, probably by taking antibiotics. That left the aggressive part of your immune system unchecked and led to arthritis. The aggressive part of your immune system also requires different gut bacteria and that is why Minocyclin controls arthritis by compromising your whole immune system and blocking the autoimmune attack on your joints.

You are probably vitamin D deficient, so you should get that under control.

The supplements that you are taking my supply some of the nutrients that would normally be provided by healthy gut flora. The coconut oil is probably protecting your liver and providing some safe calories.

Your fundamental problem is getting off the antibiotics and then starting to repair your gut flora. I have a couple of hundred posts on this site and dozens of them would be helpful to you. Homemade fermented vegetables would be essential to your cure, but there are also many posts on my blog about fish oil and topicals to decrease joint inflammation.

The fact that other relatives have autoimmune diseases indicates that everyone has unhealthy diets and poorly functioning gut flora. It isn't likely to be genetic. It also suggests the overuse of cleaning products and excessive hygiene.

Diet alone will not fix your gut, because you are missing a hundred different species of bacteria necessary for a functional immune system. I doubt that your immune system would be able to protect you from infections without your use of the potent antibiotic. Your best bet would be a fecal transplant, supported with a complementary diet containing the soluble fiber needed to feed the bacteria.

Start reading and let me know of your progress.

MaryBeth said...

Hi Dr. Ayers,
Thanks so much to responding to my post. I didn't mention before as I wanted to keep my post short, I was never taking antibiotics and can never remember taking antibiotics except once(for a week) in my adulthood before I got RA. I had a pretty clean diet with the exception of gluten, diary, sugar and some canola oil. My processed food conception was so low. I have no doubt I destroyed my gut flora with I went on DMARDS. I did some reading from your site and got myself off of them and started following the Paleo diet. I gave it 6 months (also tried elimination diet trial)and was still in some pain. Maybe it wasn't long enough to the amount of destruction?

So I read about the Antibiotic Protocol through the Roadback Foundation. That is how I started minocycline.

Hygiene I am not real big on but do wash my hands after being at the gym and using the bathroom (#2). I dropped all cleaning supplies except Dr. Bronner.

I do so much want to do the fecal transplant that I pulled out the turkey baster to show my husband, LOL. I have a question, my husband still eats some gluten, sugar and diary but he is on no medication at all. Can I use him as a donor? Now I need to find a doctor that will assist me!!

I am going to start making my own kimchi and look for some other fermented veggies. I also juice(veggies with an apple and lemon) for lunch, is that okay? And I will reread your post for something I missed! I very much want to stop my antibiotic use and make myself whole again. Right now I have no stiffness (I have slight twinges but some would say that it is being 54) and my Rheumatologist asked me if I wanted to stop the minocycline.
Thanks so much!

MaryBeth said...

I forgot to add, I take Vitamin D and have it checked every time I see my Rheumatologist. It is normal.

DrDelGrosso said...

This was a funny post and I love how you take complex topics and make them understandable.

I have trouble with Dr. Oz myself. On one hand, he increases interest for people to seek personal and less invasive solutions to health. He is getting messages I generally agree with out in the open.

On the other hand, his messages are often incomplete and packaged in a very "flashy" way that can harm the message. One episode he will bash bacteria and have people scrub everything down with baking soda, and in another he will talk about benefits of probiotics (of course without any depth).

All in all I think he acts as a good conversation starter for me in my practice, and I just inform patients with as much "realistic" evidence as I can provide. He has also helped me simplify my delivery with complex concepts, resulting from seeing how people respond well to his show and its style.

Alix said...

Dr. Art,

I am in the process of booking an appointment for a fecal transplant in the UK.

My symptoms of food alleries/sensitivities, eczema, fatigue and digestive issues began after a course of antibiotics.

I eat lamb, lettuce, cucumber, carrots, turnip, coconut oil and fish liver oil. I take a daily dose of ibuprofen of 400 mg due to my joint pain. I know that ibuprofen is bad for your gut but I can't function without it. What would you suggest I try to help with my joint pain?

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Holly said...

I have an autoimmune disease. My mother and I both had it and neither were breastfed. I am breastfeeding my child but am very concerned that I cannot give her a healthy biome despite my attempts to support it with breastmilk. She already has food intolerances and shows other signs of inflammation. I am seriously considering FMT, but have recently been told FMT has actually caused autoimmune conditions in some people. I can find no verifiable reference for this and am very dubious about it, but have to take it sreiously as the absolute last thing I want to do is make our problems worse although I am prepared to go to great lengths to make them better. Does anyone have any opinions on the claim that FMT could actually make you sick?

Dr. Art Ayers said...

FMTs can be very helpful or harmful, depending on the donor.

I think that you should instead repair your family/s gut flora, and at the same time provide temporary support for both you and your child's immune system.

Temporary support is via dairy probiotics (I recommend ELIXA) and home fermented vegetables (I recommend Shockey's book, Fermented Vegetables). The benefits are quick, on the order of months.

The long term solution is to minimize hygiene and be in intimate contact with healthy people whose gut flora you admire. Keep nursing and play in the mud with your kid. Ignore the 5 second rule. Realize that pathogens are for sick people. Get yourself a dog with access to the outside. Remember that nursing mothers do not clean floors (or much else besides an occasional baby's bottom.) Kids put things in their mouths to harvest environmental bacteria as candidates for their developing gut flora.

Antibiotics and processed foods are the bane of healthy gut flora.

If your gut flora is just a little damaged, it might also be repaired by The Potato Hack by Tim Steele. That potato diet alone could probably fix half of all autoimmune diseases and allergies.

If you fix your gut flora, then your child's will also be repaired, just because you inevitably share flora.

I don't have a reference for FMT transfer of autoimmune dysfunction, but it makes sense. It would probably just be a general tendency with the specific disease based on happenstance. I would only use someone with a high unsupplemented vitamin D serum level, indicating no chronic inflammation. I wouldn't recommend it for a kid, of course.

Let me know how you do.

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