Dr Dahlman’s treatment of Colitis, IBS, and Crohn’s Disease is of interest for 3 reasons. I like the logic of his arguments about the symptoms which are similar in all three disorders. There is agreement with other nutritional positions that give superior health and are found in the scientific literature.
It is quite possible that varying symptoms may be present in “normal” people who have problems with heartburn and difficult bowel movements.
These problems may be manageable with over the counter medications, but these symptoms may indicate the beginnings of the disorders indicated above.
A set of symptoms that can be relieved by making different life-style choices doesn’t qualify as a disease according to some.
This has been said about Obesity and Adult Onset Diabetes. The people with these symptoms can alleviate the symptoms by making certain lifestyle changes.
Colitis, IBS, and Crohn’s Disease are considered a lifestyle dilemma by Dr. Dahlman. And your body is trying to tell you something about your choices.
see website for 32 page overview
The Origin of Colitis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), and Crohn’s
Searching for the cause of a chronic condition is a different mindset than masking a condition with prescription drugs or self-medication. There is a question that must be answered.
What is interfering with the body’s ability to express itself in a healthy fashion?
The main reason for the discomfort of Colitis, IBS and Crohn’s is the inability to timely digest ingested foods. This results in diarrhea, gas, bloating and abdominal pain.
The loss of normal bacteria and resultant changes in the chemistry in the digestive tract is the heart of the problem. When proper bacteria are re-established in the colon then the proper chemistry will be evident as the colon heals itself. It takes time and the right materials to re-establish normal metabolic reactions.
The primary reason the population of beneficial bacteria is lost is because of antibiotics. Antibiotic use in humans destroys the proper bacteria in the human intestinal tract. A normal source of the friendly useful bacteria for the human colon used to be raw whole milk from pasture fed animals.
Antibiotic use in chronically sick cows in today’s confinement dairy industry destroys the natural source of good bacteria in the dairy animal. Antibiotic use in both systems allows the growth of pathogenic microorganisms because of the destruction of the normal friendly bacteria in milk.
Milk Allergies Come From Pasteurized Milk
Obtained From Sick Animals Kept in Confinement Dairies
Part of the treatment involves identifying foods which have caused allergies. These foods must be deleted from the diet during treatment. There are special blood tests that identify foods that complicate recovery from the disorders.
Milk causes problems in Colitis, IBS and Crohn’s. And it’s not surprising. Milk from the confinement dairy industry is inherently an unhealthy product. It is filled with high levels of hormones to increase milk production in the dairy animals.
The dairy animals are fed an unnatural diet of high protein, soy, high carbohydrate grains, silage, and other materials which have abnormal physiological reactions in the animal’s digestive system. Infection of the milk with pathogenic bacteria is a result of these practices. Antibiotics are required in efforts to control the nearly constant infection in these animals.
Because of the high rates of bacterial infection tolerated by the government, the milk has to be pasteurized to be “safe”. The high temperatures of pasteurization result in a lot of dead bacteria, and denatured bacterial and milk proteins. And these dead bacteria and denatured proteins produce the allergies for which today’s milk is responsible.
These allergies in humans may develop because of a damaged colon. The damaged colon comes from a bacterial flora that is largely pathogenic microorganisms. The damaged colon, in Colitis IBS and Crohn's, coupled with an inadequate diet, may result in Leaky Gut Syndrome. Undigested materials pass through the intestinal tract wall, into the blood stream, and cause a reaction leading to the production of histamine. Once this happens an additional food allergy has been created.
This milk, produced by the bulk of today’s dairy industry, even though pasteurized, has been responsible for more illness, including deaths, than clean raw whole milk from pasture fed cattle. Clean raw whole milk from pasture-fed animals does not produce these allergies or large amounts of pathogenic bacteria. Clean raw whole milk from pasture-fed animals naturally contains the needed friendly bacteria necessary for a healthy colon.
Dr. Dahlman proclaimed we’d be better off if each of us had a cow in the backyard and brought milk right to the table. This is in agreement with the Real Milk Campaign of the Weston A. Price Foundation.
Steps to Restore Normal Metabolic Reactions in the Colon
The steps involved in the treatment of the painful symptoms of Colitis, IBS and Crohn’s begin with identifying food allergies. Submit to a special food allergy blood test, and discontinue all allergy causing foods during treatment. Re-establish normal bacterial balance in the colon. Feed the intestinal tissue with proper supplements, restore normal chemistry, and reduce inflammation. Improve digestion.
Proper bacterial species which need to be re-established in human beings with Colitis, IBS and Crohn’s include acidolphilus and bifidus species.
Dr. Dahlman has his own preferred source of bacteria and other materials for treatment of Colitis, IBS and Crohn's which have worked satisfactorily for a number of years.
Big Four Dietary Rules
All dairy products must be eliminated. Gluten containing products must also be removed from the diet. Gluten plays a large role in Crohn’s symptoms, so wheat, rye, oats and barley must be discontinued. Spelt bread can be tried, which is usually OK for a gluten restricted diet. Stop eating all gas causing foods such as navy, lentils, garbanzo, kidney, black, and red beans. Green beans, peas, and lima beans are OK.
Don’t drink during meals. Gas and bloating are caused by not breaking down foods in a timely manner. There should be soft chewed food in the bottom of the stomach.
Drinking liquid during a meal creates a soup and dilutes the hydrochloric acid (HCl) and other digestive enzymes. Digestion may be delayed creating a gas, because the food may actually start to rot in the stomach if digestion is delayed.
The Perils of Self-Medication
Over the counter drugs, prescription drugs, poor diet, and alcohol also contribute as secondary reasons for losing the beneficial bacterial populations in Colitis, IBS and Crohn's.
For pain NSAIDS may be used. They may or may not work. NSAIDS are enemies of a healthy intestinal tract and should be eliminated if possible. NSAIDs may contribute to bleeding of the damaged intestinal tract.
NSAIDS can give potentially fatal side effects because gastrointestinal side effects don’t give advance warning. In a study reported in the New England Journal of Medicine and referred to by Dr. Dahlman, (NEJM) by the Boston University School of Medicine, over the counter medications generally, and NSAIDS in particular, hinder the effort to conquer gastric damage, ulcers and bleeding in Colitis, IBS and Crohn's.
Antacids reduce the amount of stomach acid which decreases the availability of calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), and potassium (K).
Calcium availability is reduced because of the increase in pH, or decrease in the acidity, of stomach contents.
Calcium availability is also reduced because calcium utilization requires Vitamin D, which is a fat soluble vitamin. Saturated animal fat is required for optimal utilization of vitamin D and therefore optimal utilization of calcium.
And we are told to reduce our intake of saturated fat. The result is that a lot of calcium and Vitamin D does no good because of inadequate animal fat intake.
Calcium is needed for muscle contraction, and also for bones & teeth. With reduced acidity from self-medication there may be malabsorption of minerals in Colitis, IBS, and Crohn's.
Self medication with antacids is first line of attack to alleviate heartburn symptoms. These always exacerbate stomach and colon conditions, even though temporary symptomatic relief may be obtained.
Antacids lower the amount of digestive enzymes, especially hydrochloric acid (HCl). The pH of the stomach contents during digestion is too high if these materials are in use. To put it another way the stomach contents during digestion may not contain enough acid.
Digestive enzymes, especially those that digest proteins, need proper acidity to denature proteins so the initial breakdown of proteins can begin.
There is a sphincter muscle at bottom of the esophagus that needs calcium to operate properly. When this sphincter muscle doesn’t close because of a lack of calcium, acidic contents of the stomach splash into the bottom of the esophagus, and pain results. Proper acidity in the stomach also helps to disable, or kill microorganisms that are present on all raw natural foodstuffs.
Poor Diet and Prescription Drugs
Many realize certain foods make symptoms worse. So they try to avoid those foods or maybe become afraid to eat. As the symptoms become worse, a visit to a physician may be deemed necessary. Frequently the physician will write a prescription for Nexium or Prilosec. The most common side effects of Nexium are headache, diarrhea and abdominal pain. Which is what you are experiencing. So the question could be asked how is this drug supposed to help?
The reason given for prescribing Nexium or Prilosec is an overproduction of HCl, which Dr. Dahlman says is a misdiagnosis. Nexium and Prilosec reduce the amount of stomach acid which only makes stomach and colon problems in Colitis, IBS and Crohn's worse.
The TV ad says serious stomach conditions may still exist. I’m sure they know that Nexium is not really a healing pill. But it is a good selling point, and many have swallowed their advice. It may actually make stomach and colon conditions worse even though temporary symptom relief of pain in the esophagus may be obtained.
Crohn’s, Colitis, IBS Treatment - Food Instructions
For those with Crohn's, IBS or Colitis Dr. Dahlman has specific instructions for allowed food ingestion. He recommends eating fruit first since it is easily digested. If eaten last, delayed digestion from may contribute to gas and bloating.
Fructose is the sugar in fruits, and may cause a problem. If so, fruit ingestion may have to be controlled. This also could mean tight control of sugar, honey and most sweets, because they all contain fructose.
Eggs are not dairy products, and are OK. Butter is OK. It is pure fat and doesn’t cause problems like milk protein and carbohydrate do. If you like butter enjoy it. Dr. Dahlman also recommends discontinue taking vitamins, minerals and herbs during treatment.
A stool sample, as used by many physicians, looks for blood or parasites. The thousands of stool tests ordered by Dr. Dahlman reveal parasites in only 3 or 4 samples a year.
The information needed relates to bacteria and yeasts. Too little good bacteria and too much of the wrong types of bacteria and too high a yeast concentration creates havoc in these serious disorders.
If Candida or yeast is found in greater than normal amounts in Colitis, IBS or Crohn's, it is well to be aware of this before starting the rigorous treatment and diet needed to clear up the symptoms.
Special Instructions Regarding Prescription Drugs
If during treatment symptoms are disappearing and you wish to reduce your dependence on prescription drugs do so with the knowledge and approval of your physician.
Decrease one pill of one prescription at a time. Maintain this level for three weeks and continue only if symptoms do not reoccur. If symptoms do not come back, then you may reduce one more pill and hold for 3 weeks. If symptoms come back, go back to last effective dose of the prescription drug and hold for a month or two, then try again. There is no need to be in a hurry.
Dr Dahlman does not believe you need a colon cleanse. If a cleanse does not do any good in these serious disorders, a cleanse will not be of any benefit to those with normal intestinal tracts.
I’m glad I never gave in to these claims for need of a colon cleanse, even as I wondered if there were any truth to them. Dr. Dahlman offers a “do your own thing” in following his written protocol for treating Colitis, IBS and Crohn's. But there are problems with this approach. While you are personally aware of the acute symptoms, you probably don’t know what he knows from treating thousands of patients over the years. I would think the telephone interviews, while expensive, could be invaluable in confronting the many variations of the symptoms.
There are other websites that offer supplements that treat the colon and claim to re-populate the colon with their own brand of bacterial components. By using these you may be flying in the dark with only an online store and listing of products to self-treat a very complex set of symptoms that are part of Colitis, IBS and Crohn's.