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Restore Digestive Microbiome and Consume the Wholesome Diet. How to achieve this. Diversification like investing in an S&P 500 nonmanaged retirement account.

Almost every day we learn of toxins present in various foods: lead, maybe in everything, pesticides in everything that we think is healthy, such as oat cereal. What do we do?

I am of the opinion that one of the worst health toxicities is stress. So stressing over everything we eat (orthorexia) probably is a more dire health state of mind then to be more relaxed mentally, and just accept that there may be at least mild toxicity in everything. Also it is unclear at the present what may be the best of the anti-oxidants or the best of the microbiome-restorations: my solution; take many of them, in small measure (clearly good ones maybe in larger measure).

Restoring the Digestive System Microbiome:

The restoration of a healthy digestive microbiome is maybe amongst the most important dietary thing that we all should do. Especially for those who may have damaged their microbiome significantly through frequent use of antibiotics. Do this sensibly.

Restoring the microbiome taking one type of probiotic may be good to restore/ enhance one healthy organism, but maybe not a diversified enough population. So create a schedule of taking a little of a number of different products in a semi-organized interleaved fashion. That is not taking them all at once. Eat different probiotic products, and as much as possible ones that seem natural and healthy. Probiotic + biotic yogurts, kefirs, for example. Mixed with supplement probiotics.

Wholesome Diet:

As much as reasonably achieved a diet based on healthy natural foods prepared simply. Keep an eye on low refined sugars and carbohydrates and on a low level of added chemicals. This includes the obvious, high chemical breakfast cereal with low satiety. Read as much as you like, again with a focus to remain calm and not drive yourself crazy with stress, on foods that are anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory. Consume a broad array of them. But you should like them and pay attention to if you can tolerate them (abdominal pain and bloating are key features to pay attention to for intolerance). So I like blueberries, blackberries, pineapple, mango, beans, broccoli, grapes, turmeric, fish, lean beef. and chicken. I avoid things that either have a higher allergic property from the literature or your personal experience. So I limit eating strawberries, and peanuts, although I do eat them, and tolerate a few hives from them. I find I cannot tolerate garlic or onions well as I have aged, so I minimize them. I used to drink a lot of Diet Coke, now I rarely do, and as a treat, I drink unsweetened black tea, and if I feel I need to diversify more on any day, unsweetened green tea. Easy to prepare, cheap, mainly healthy (theophylline very good), not likely to be too toxic. The point is you combine an array of food and drink elements following the written or spoken literature by experts, especially plan to eat things that atleast 3 separate sources recommend. Create your own diverse portfolio of foods. I don't consider myself an expert in diet, I certainly have not done any randomized controlled trials, but I do consider that I have good wisdom-sense.


Any one product in the microbiome-restorative arena or diet may have unknown to you, or anyone else, a high level of lead or pesticides or something else nasty. You control for this, with essentially the same concept of having a retirement portfolio containing a broad coverage of the S&P 500 stocks, also with international blend. Something in your diet (or your S&P 500 diversified account may be toxic, but because you have consumed/ invested in a relatively small amount of it, you should still fare quite well. Don't eat just blueberries and green beans, and don't buy stock in just Enron, Peabody Energy, and Boeing. Diversify and keep your stress low.

Richard Semelka, MD


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