We will be adding answers to the most commonly asked questions about Step 3 of the Great-In-8 plan along with important information for troubleshooting this step here shortly.
Q: How much Elemental Heal will I need?
A: Elemental Heal contains approximately 480 calories per serving (360 without oil added). This info-graphic gives you a good estimate on how many bottles you may need for your needs. To view the full caloric chart from the USDA, click here. To get a custom recommendation of your daily caloric intake, try using this calorie calculator.
Q: Is it better to eat higher FODMAP during SIBO treatment to feed the bugs you’re trying to kill?
A: The simple answer is that my recommendation is to continue whatever diet you feel healthiest on during treatment. Eating to reduce inflammation will have a stronger impact on your treatment success than eating to feed bacteria.
If you’re trying to restore your gut ecology, then whatever diet makes you the healthiest is what’s best for restoring a healthy biome. If eating a diet higher in FODMAPs irritates your gut and causes symptoms, I would recommend not doing that. That will cause an inflammatory milieu, which will encourage the growth of unhealthy bacteria.
When someone follows a low FODMAP diet, they typically have less leaky gut, fewer inflammatory cytokines, and fewer symptoms. You have a better chance of clearing an infection if you have less of all of these. We also know that lowered inflammation helps in recovery of motility. See page 21 of HGHY for more information on inflammation.
While there was one study that did support feeding bacteria during the treatment phase, it’s only one, and it begs the question of whether or not the improvement was clinically meaningful. Additionally, the rules for treating with herbs are likely different than treating with prescription medication (which was used in the study).
Ultimately, everyone is going to be getting some fiber and some FODMAPs, because a low FODMAP diet isn’t a zero residue diet. The best thing to do is to eat what’s best for you, because you are the soil from the which these bacteria grow. Inflammation favors unhealthy bacteria, while healthy bacteria flourish in an environment with less inflammation.
For more information, see my podcast on the topic with Dr. Allison Siebecker.
Please post any questions or comments regarding this step below.
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