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Why Fasting Might Help Diabetics

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20 May 2013 13:31 #16712 by moises
moises created the topic: Why Fasting Might Help Diabetics
There is a book called Fast Tract Digestion: Heartburn by Norm Robillard. He posits that heartburn is caused by small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. These bacteria produce large (many liters) quantities of gas. This gas can move up, not just down. The upward-moving gas can force stomach contents in an upward direction, causing heartburn.

So, I just read this morning of a man who was having heartburn. He read Robillard's book and stopped eating his daily 1.5 apples. His heartburn resolved. But, here's the amazing thing, his blood glucose (BG) control significantly improved.

He theorized that the reason his BG control improved was because of something called the "incretin effect." If you want the details, you can use Google. But here is the bare-bones explanation.

The intestinal cells have receptors that detect stretching. Typically, the intestines are stretched when there is food in them. When these receptors detect stretching, they send a nerve signal that leads to the secretion of incretin. In normal people, this is fine. But in diabetics, this incretin secretion leads to a series of events that ends with an increase in BG.

In summary, intestinal stretching causes incretin secretion, which causes elevated BG.

Now, let's say you have a bacterial overgrowth in your small intestines. Let's further say that you eat something that feeds the small intestinal bacteria. These bacteria metabolize this food and produce a vast quantity of gas. This gas stretches the small intestine. This causes BG to go much higher than it would have if there were only an apple to digest.

So, imagine a person with small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. She has intestinal gas, heartburn, and BG instability.

Now, she fasts for a period sufficient to eradicate the bacterial overgrowth.

Now, she eats an apple. No bacteria in the small intestine metabolize the digested apple, so no gas is generated. Therefore, there is no heartburn. And, since the small intestine is not being stretched by gas, not much incretin is secreted. And, since not much incretin is secreted, BG is normal.

So, one intervention--fasting--treats one disease--bacterial overgrowth--which eradicates multiple morbidities--gas, heartburn, diabetes.

So far, there is only the anecdote of one man to go on. But the idea has merit and is intriguing.

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20 May 2013 14:26 #16713 by TheFastDoctor
TheFastDoctor replied the topic: Why Fasting Might Help Diabetics
Careful, dear Moises, of over-generalizations. There are several causes of heartburn. If stomach contents is liquid plus gas, the gas will move up but the liquid tend to move down under the force of gravity. The apples guy may just have had (like myself) and apple allergy. Or, since apples contain a lot of pectin that neutralize stomach acid, it was incompletely digested, subsequently fermented and thus produced gas.

Fasting will indeed reduce the number of bacteria in the intestine and your dissertation of the subsequent change in reaction to certain foods definitely makes sense. But this one intervention - fasting - has been found to be beneficial in all diseases or ill health where it was applied. It is by far the most omnipotent healing intervention.

Which makes sense if you consider practically ALL other "remedies" consist of something you have to put INTO your body. Disease or ill health is already on the inside.. something needs to come out, not in... and during a fast your body has just that opportunity.

André

All my posts are "generic", based on my opinions and experiences only and are not intended to replace the advice of your own licensed medical practitioner.
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20 May 2013 16:08 #16719 by Ockeghem
Ockeghem replied the topic: Why Fasting Might Help Diabetics
I don't get heartburn very often (it's really a nuisance when you're running), but whenever I eat a piece of chocolate before I go to bed, I inevitably wake up about two or three hours later with quite a case of heartburn. So I don't do that any more. I can eat chocolate (in fairly large amounts) any other time, but not before bed. Thankfully, my mother taught me a very quick and easy way to get rid of heartburn which never fails (one level teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in water).

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21 May 2013 14:59 #16730 by moises
moises replied the topic: Why Fasting Might Help Diabetics
Andre,

Yes, I tend to get carried away with enthusiasm for new ideas. I certainly didn't mean to suggest that fasting's only benefit was in reducing the bacterial load. Thank you for clarifying my thinking.

Ockeghem,

Although I have a number of digestive difficulties, heartburn is not one of them. But I admire the fact that you know exactly what to do to create your heartburn and what to do to remove it.
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