4 R’s Remove, Rebuild, Restore, and Replenish
4 R’s Remove, Rebuild, Restore, and Replenish
Part 1 – Safe, effective, detoxification
Looking for a holistic way to boost your health? The 4 Rs could be the answer. In a four-part series, we’ll look at how to enhance your health and wellbeing by following the principles of Remove, Rebuild, Restore, and Replenish, starting here with some simple steps to help your body detox any lingering liabilities.
The human body has an incredible capacity for getting rid of toxins, but only if it has the right materials for the job. In practice, this means:
- Drinking plenty of water
- Getting regular exercise to keep the blood flowing
- Eating a healthy, balanced diet packed with vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients
- Getting enough fibre.
Let’s take a closer look at that last point and see how fibre helps with detoxification.
Fibre for detoxification
Dietary fibre has a huge impact on health, and not just for the gut. It can also affect other detoxification organs including the liver and kidneys. These effects are linked to changes in the gut though, so let’s start there.
Dietary fibre can:
- Support a healthy gut microbiome (i.e., the friendly bacteria in the digestive tract)
- Influence nutrient uptake
- Support immune responses in the gastrointestinal tract
- Affect reabsorption of hormones and other chemicals
- Improve transit time to get waste out of the body faster.
By supporting a healthy microbiome, dietary fibre also influences the intestinal barrier. This barrier is essential for controlling what can and can’t enter the bloodstream and plays a major role in keeping toxic substances and allergens from getting into the blood and heading to the liver and then the rest of the body.
By keeping this barrier healthy, fibre helps to reduce the workload on the liver. This means that the liver is better able to focus on processing the natural waste metabolites produced during the body’s everyday operations. The same goes for the kidneys; by keeping potentially harmful substances out of the bloodstream, a healthy gut barrier and regular bowel movements relieves pressure on these other important organs of detoxification.
A good intake of dietary fibre is associated with positive effects in diabetes, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). In part, this is because of the way dietary fibre helps to whisk potential toxins out of the body before they affect these other organs and systems.
In the case of diabetes, dietary fibre helps to slow the release of carbohydrates, including simple sugars, into the blood, which reduces blood sugar and insulin spikes and helps with diabetes management. As uncontrolled diabetes can itself be a source of toxicity in the body, this is another way in which fibre helps support detoxification and a cleaner system overall.
As for NAFLD, this can be caused both by liver damage related to a high intake of sugars and unhealthy fats as well as damage from other sources. Again, dietary fibre comes to the rescue, by not only keeping toxin absorption to a minimum but also by ‘soaking up’ some of that unhealthy fat and transporting it out of the body before it can do any damage.
How much fibre do we need each day?
Recommendations for dietary fibre aren’t set in stone and vary between individuals. As a general rule though, adults aged 50 or below should aim to get 25–38 g of fibre every day. Adults over 50 should aim for 21–30 g daily. If your current fibre intake falls well below this, be sure to build up gradually as a sudden increase in fibre can upset your digestive system and cause gas, bloating, and even diarrhea.
If you are suffering with constipation, try increasing your intake of water and fibre, and make sure to keep moving around as exercise helps get the bowels moving too. Think about any medications you might be taking as some can cause constipation; don’t stop taking your medications, but consider talking to your doctor in case there are alternative drugs that might work just as well without causing constipation.
Occasionally constipation typically resolves without seriously affecting health. But persistent constipation means that waste isn’t being eliminated fast enough, which allows toxins to build up in the bowel. The longer it lingers, the more likely you are to end up with toxins in your bloodstream.
An easy way to achieve your daily fibre intake
If it’s a struggle to get enough fibre in your diet, check out Qenda Ultimate Fibre. This supplement provides a whopping 40% of the recommended daily intake of dietary fibre in a convenient powder that can be mixed with water and used daily. This organic fibre formula also features 100% certified organic and wildcrafted ingredients to support digestive health and detoxification, including slippery elm bark, cascara bark, marshmallow root, horsetail, rosehip, oat straw, turmeric, chlorella, astragalus, ashwagandha, and other herbs.
Qenda is vegan-friendly, Halal, and Kosher. To experience the benefits of Qenda Ultimate Fibre, mix two levels scoops/tablespoons with 350-400 mL of water in a shaker bottle once or twice daily. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds and drink right away, ideally 10-30 minutes before a meal.
Next up in this series on the 4 R’s, we’ll look at how to Rebuild your system if your health has taken a bit of a hit and you want to get back on track, with a focus on glutamine for gut health.
Part 2 - Glutamine to rebuild
In the second part of this series on restoring your health with the 4 R’s, we take a look at how to Rebuild using the right nutrients, with a special focus on the amino acid glutamine.
Returning to good health can be a huge challenge, and managing ongoing conditions that make it harder to rebound if you do get laid low by a virus, injury, or other setback. Knowing how to support healthy detoxification (see Part 1 of this series) and how to effectively rebuild your body is vital for a strong recovery.
This means getting adequate sleep, keeping stress levels as low as possible, staying hydrated, getting regular exercise and, of course, achieving a good intake of fibre and the nutrients your body needs to get back up to speed. One key nutrient is an amino acid called glutamine.
What is glutamine?
Glutamine is a naturally occurring amino acid (one of the building blocks of protein) and is involved in a wide range of bodily processes. These include the creation of proteins that make up muscle tissue, skin, and the joints, as well as the production of energy by the body.
Technically, glutamine is a non-essential amino acid, but it is considered conditionally essential for those experiencing infection, stress, or during high intensity or prolonged exercise.
If you lack glutamine, you’ll really feel it (even if you’ve never heard of the amino acid!). Why? Because glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in plasma and skeletal muscle. It is absolutely essential for healing and repair and is also needed to help the body defend against infection, keep inflammation in check, and for cell proliferation and survival. Glutamine is also important for the production of a key antioxidant called glutathione.
While you might have spotted L-Glutamine supplements in the ‘Sports’ section of the store, this amino acid does more than just support muscle health. It’s hugely important for helping the body recover from illness or stress, especially if you’re an older adult. When used preventatively, glutamine can help the body better handle prolonged stress, intense exercise, trauma (including surgery), immune system dysfunction, and inflammation.
When the body is under intense stress, glutamine stores can be depleted, which then compromises immune function and increases the risk of infection. Low glutamine levels also lead to muscle fatigue, and make it harder for the kidney, liver, and gastrointestinal tract to perform well. In fact, glutamine is the preferred fuel for the liver and immune system cells!
When you don’t have enough glutamine, the body struggles to maintain its acid-base balance, which can lead to greater fatigue, higher risk of infection, muscle cramps, and even muscle breakdown/loss. Too little glutamine also compromises the intestinal barrier, meaning you’re more likely to absorb toxins and to experience food sensitivities and other problems.
What’s more, the intestines use a whopping 30% of total glutamine and competes for glutamine with other tissues. This means that if your gut is unhappy, chances are your other tissues will not be getting as much glutamine as they would like.
Supplementing with glutamine
To help rebuild and recover after an illness, surgery, intense physical exertion, or a particularly stressful period in life, you might want to consider supplementing with glutamine.
Glutamine can help:
- Boost immune function to protect against infection and disease
- Help reduce fatigue and lessen the risk of infection related to immunosuppression after overtraining or intense physical labour
- Reduce the production of inflammatory molecules
- Reduce muscle breakdown when someone is experiencing a prolonged illness
- Reduce infections and mortality in very low birth weight infants, critically ill people, and people undergoing surgery
- Support the gastrointestinal tract’s natural mucosal defences
- Help heal and stabilise the intestinal barrier, so the body can keep unwanted toxins out while letting beneficial nutrients in.
In one study, marathon runners who took glutamine immediately after and two hours after a marathon had a lower incidence of upper respiratory tract infections (such as colds) in the week after the marathon. Glutamine has also been associated with improved immune responses to the flu vaccine in older adults.
As for gut health, research suggests that people with Crohn’s disease often have low glutamine concentrations and could benefit from glutamine supplement in the management of the disease. In one randomized controlled trial, glutamine supplementation reduced intestinal permeability and other gastrointestinal issues in people with Crohn’s disease (during a remission phase), when taken at a daily dose of 0.5 g/kg of body weight for two months.
A systematic review of research in humans found that glutamine-enriched diets helped improve immune function in trauma patients and helped prevent intestinal inflammation in people undergoing chemotherapy. This review notes that improved clinical outcomes were associated with doses of 21 g glutamine per day for 28 days for Crohn’s disease, and 42 g/day for 21 days for short bowel syndrome.
A great way to get glutamine
If you’re looking to heal your gut, stave off infections, or rebuild after illness, injury, surgery, or prolonged or intense stress, check out Solgar’s L-Glutamine Powder. This convenient supplement allows for easy dosing, with one level teaspoon providing 3.5 grams of free-form L-glutamine. Just mix with 200 mL of water or juice, one or two times daily, between meals.
Solgar L-Glutamine Powder is free from gluten, wheat, dairy, soya, yeast, preservatives, sweeteners, artificial flavours or colours and is vegan-friendly, Kosher, and Halal.
In the next part of this series on the 4 R’s, following on from removing toxins and rebuilding the gut with glutamine, we’ll look at how to restore your microbiome with Natren probiotics.
Part 3 Natren probiotics to restore the microbiome
In our holistic health series looking at the 4 Rs, we’ve already covered Remove and Rebuild, and are now onto Part 3 - Restore!
If you’ve been following along, you’ll have already learned about the benefits of dietary fibre for helping the body safely and quickly remove toxins and support detoxification. You’ll also have a newfound appreciation for the role of glutamine, an amino acid, in rebuilding the gut, immune system, and muscles after illness, injury, or stress.
This time, we’re looking at the importance of probiotics for all round health. After all, if you’ve gone to the trouble of upping your dietary fibre and rebuilding a healthy gut environment, it’s best to have some friendly bacteria make their home there rather than create a party zone for pathogens.
What are probiotics?
In short, probiotics are microorganisms including bacteria and yeasts that provide some kind of benefit to our health. It might be that they support immune function in the gut, help with digestion, compete with pathogens (disease causing microorganisms), or even help regulate mood and cognition.
The two main types of bacteria that populate the gut and support good health are Lactobacillus species (which help support the small intestine) and Bifidobacteria (which support the large intestine or colon). These bacteria are known as lactic-acid producing bacteria because, surprise, they produce lactic acid. This helps to keep the gut environment so that undesirable ‘bad’ bacteria and other pathogens like Candida albicans can’t get a foothold.
And, because pathogens like Candida albicans can produce toxins, cause inflammation and infection and interfere with the absorption of nutrients, probiotics play a key role in supporting digestive health, immune function, and cognitive and emotional wellbeing.
In addition to helping keep bad bacteria and yeasts in check, probiotics also support the synthesis of B vitamins, the digestion of carbohydrates and proteins, cholesterol regulation, and the production of neurotransmitters in the gut.
Choosing a good probiotic
Probiotics love prebiotics, i.e., dietary fibre that we can’t digest ourselves but that help feed beneficial bacteria and yeasts. Happily, we already covered the importance of fibre in the first part of this series!
Aside from needing a food source, probiotics also need the ability to survive the gastric acid in the stomach, so they can actually get to the gut where they support health. Not all strains of bacteria are able to do this, so choosing a quality probiotic supplement is absolutely essential. Otherwise, you’re just throwing your money away!
In addition, you’ll want to find a probiotic that is guaranteed to have live cultures, i.e., living bacteria, when you get the product home. Far too many probiotic supplements contain few, if any, live cultures. This can be due to poor choice of probiotic strains, poor storage or transportation conditions, or problems with manufacturing.
A better probiotic
Natren probiotics are created using the unique proprietary Trenev Process ®. This ensures that live bacteria are stable and able to survive thanks to an innovative system that enrobes each super strain to keep them separated, noncompetitive and virtually 100% protected from the stomach's gastric juices.
Rest assured that the potency and number of colony forming units (CFUs) in all Natren probiotics is guaranteed through third party verification. What you see on the label is what you’re actually getting with each dose.
One of the most popular products from Natren is their Healthy Trinity three-in-one probiotic supplement. This is a great choice for restoring the microbiome as it provides meaningful amounts of some of the most thoroughly researched probiotics around:
- Lactobacillus acidophilus, NAS super strain, 5 billion cfu
- Bifidobacterium bifidum, Malyoth super strain, 20 billion cfu
- Lactobacillus bulgaricus, LB-51 super strain, 5 billion cfu.
These probiotic strains go a long way to restoring a healthy microbiome. What’s more, the carefully chosen strains in Natren Healthy Trinity also help support digestion of dairy products to reduce symptoms of lactose intolerance such as bloating, flatulence, and diarrhea.
We’re close to wrapping up this series on holistic health with the 4 R’s, but first we need to build on the successes so far by learning how to replenish nutrition levels through diet and, where appropriate, meaningful dietary supplements.
Part 4 - Replenish vital nutrients for all-round great health
In the final part of this series on the 4 R’s of holistic health, we’ll look at replenishing vital nutrients. If you’ve been following along, you’ll have already learned all about removing toxins, rebuilding your gut and energy levels, and restoring your microbiome. Now, your body is primed and ready to absorb essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and more – all in the pursuit of all-round great health.
What are vital nutrients?
There’s a lot of talk about healthy, balanced diets and good nutrition, but what does this actually mean? In theory, it means providing your body with all the nutrients it needs to function properly and stay healthy, including the macronutrients carbohydrates, fats, and protein.
It also means getting enough of the vitamins and minerals, and essential fatty acids and essential amino acids, that your body can’t make itself. These vital nutrients help to build and maintain strong bones and teeth, and support a healthy immune system, reproductive health, cognitive health, and more.
In practice, these nutrients are best acquired by eating a predominantly plant-based diet packed with fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, healthy whole grains, legumes and pulses. You might add in a little fish or lean meat too, if desired. And here’s where things get tricky, because everybody absorbs nutrients a little differently and has different requirements for these nutrients to stay healthy (with requirements for many nutrients increasing during illness). In addition, some foods aren’t as good a source of nutrients as they used to be, largely because of soil depletion, farming methods, and how food is processed, stored, transported, and cooked.
Different nutrients also behave differently in the body, with some needing to be replenished daily and others able to be stored by the body for later use on days where there’s little to no new supply. In general, minerals are stored in the body, including in bones and teeth. Vitamins are usually less well stored by the body, with the exception of a few fat-soluble nutrients that can be stored in small amounts (vitamins A, D, E, and K).
Replenishing vital nutrients
As you might have realised by now, it’s no simple thing to talk about replenishing vital nutrients. This can look wildly different for one person compared to another. For instance, if someone has spent years eating a diet lacking in a whole range of nutrients, a strategy to replenish nutrient stores will need to be much more comprehensive than for someone who has had a brief illness but was in great health beforehand.
To complicate things even further, certain common medications, such as oral contraceptives, antacids, and statins, can deplete specific nutrients. This means that special attention needs to be paid to those drug-induced nutrient depletions when putting together a replenishment plan.
If your situation is a bit more complicated, it’s best to work with a qualified nutritionist to figure out any nutrient deficiencies. This can also help prevent you from overdosing on certain nutrients or just wasting your money by taking what you don’t really need.
For simpler cases, such as where a short infection or injury has laid you low, replenishing lost nutrients may be as uncomplicated as taking a daily multivitamin and letting your body works its magic to absorb what it needs and excrete the rest. Or, if you’re just lacking one or two nutrients, say iron or vitamin D, you may want to take a targeted supplement providing the specific nutrient and any supportive nutrients (such as vitamin C in the case of iron).
Pure Encapsulations for tailored nutritional support
Working to restore lost nutrients can seem daunting, but there’s good support available, including from Pure Encapsulations. This company has spend more than three decades researching and developing an incredible line of premium nutritional supplements. This line includes highly bioavailable forms of individual nutrients for ultra-targeted support as well as comprehensive multivitamin and mineral formulas to cover all your bases.
Pure Encapsulations also offers unique formulas that provide essential nutrients for different bodily systems, such as the brain, immune system, gut, cardiovascular system, liver and detoxification, and the endocrine (hormonal) system. Every formula or individual nutrient supplement is made with high-quality, pure ingredients free from unnecessary additives and many common allergens.
Targeted and tailored nutrient replenishment
GlutenAssure is just one of Pure Encapsulation’s many innovative formulas that makes it easier than ever to replenish nutrients even while living with a complex, chronic health issue. This multinutrient complex is specifically designed to support the nutritional needs of adults avoiding gluten. Cutting out gluten can lead to dietary shortfalls, and in cases of Celiac disease there may also be underlying nutrient deficiencies that need addressing to avoid long-term health impacts.
This formula provides calcium, magnesium, folate, and vitamins B1, B2, B6, B12 and D - nutrients that can be low in individuals following a gluten-free diet. You’ll also find vitamin K1 and K2 (menaquinone-7) in this formula, to support healthy calcium metabolism. And this is in addition to a dose of unique, clinically researched Tolerase® G prolyl-endopeptidase enzyme to help support the breakdown of any inadvertent dietary gluten.
You might also want to check out Multi t/d from Pure Encapsulations. This two-per-day multivitamin and mineral formula is enhanced with lutein and zeaxanthin for additional, targeted, antioxidant eye protection. Activated and coenzyme forms of minerals are included to make sure you get the most out of each nutrient, and because this formula doesn’t contain the bulk minerals, calcium and magnesium it’s a little easier to swallow and more convenient if you’ve already got those nutrients covered through diet or other supplements.
Pure Encapsulations offers dozens of individual nutrients and a plethora of carefully designed formulas to make it easy and cost effective to replenish the nutrients you need. So, if you’re looking for high-quality, targeted support to satisfy the final step of the 4 R’s, you can’t go wrong with Pure Encapsulations.