Solutions for Gas, Bloating and Loose Stools Using the Healthy Gut, Healthy You Protocol

Today I speak with Travis who experienced improvement in his gas, bloating and loose stools from the Healthy Gut, Healthy You protocol. Travis also made a couple mistakes that are great learning experiences for those who are using the book protocol.


Dr. Michael Ruscio, DC: Hey, everyone. This is Dr. Ruscio. I’m here today with Travis Baird, who’s had some pretty good results with the Healthy Gut, Healthy You protocol. And he was kind enough to take a moment and share his story with us. So, Travis, thanks for being with us today.

[Continue reading below]

Dr. R’s Fast Facts Summary

Case Study for Healthy Gut, Healthy You

Patient Experienced Long-term Symptoms

  • Loose stools
  • Bloating
  • Gas

Patient First Tried … 

  • 4-day fast
  • Paleo diet
  • Low FODMAP

After No Improvement, Patient Added 

  • Antimicrobials
  • Resulted in a complete turnaround in symptoms after just 4 weeks

Patient Moved to “Motility Phase”

  • Symptoms started to regress

Patient Returned to Antimicrobial Phase …

  • Added anti-biofilm agent
  • Symptoms started to fade

Probiotics Helped Too

  • Probiotics are underestimated as an antimicrobial support
  • Work toward a minimal effective dose

Patient’s Key Takeaway

  • Being patient with the process is important. Try not to jump ahead too quickly. Give each step it’s due time.

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Travis Baird: Sure.

DrMR: Can you tell people a little about your road up to Healthy Gut, Healthy You? And then we’ll go from there.

TB: I had 3 major symptoms: loose stools, bloating, and gas. And these I had for as long as I can remember. It got to the point where loose stools turned into fairly frequent diarrhea. And the gas got to be something that was inconvenient, to say the least.

DrMR: Sure.

TB: So I started to look more and more into is this normal? And what could be causing these symptoms? I listen to a lot of podcasts. So I think I first heard you on the Mind Pump podcast. And that led me to listen to your podcast.

Healthy Gut Healthy You

And that’s about the time that the gut book came out,  Healthy Gut, Healthy You. So I thought, this is great. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for, something that I can read that will guide me through the process. There’s so much information, it’s very easy to get quickly confused in which direction you should go.

So I started the process outlined in the book, the Great in 8. And I did the fasting for 4 days, first time I’ve ever done that. I tried a few of the different diets: the paleo, the low FODMAP. And at that point, I didn’t experience any kind of noticeable improvement from any of the diets or the fasting. I was kind of just back in the same spot.

So I proceeded to go through the anti-microbial step. And when I got through the first month, I thought, you know what? This is just a waste of time. I had zero benefit at this point. And I thought I’m kind of at a dead end again. It was about at that time that I had a complete turnaround, about the first week of the second month. And it was at that time that all my symptoms improved, almost just completely went away. And my digestive process was better than it had been since I could remember. So I continued through the process. And at that point, I think anything the book told me to do, I would follow through with.

DrMR: Had you done the probiotics leading up to that? Or did you gloss over—

TB: Yes. So I had tried the diets by themselves before I had even heard of the Great in 8. I had tried many different types of probiotics. And either I had no benefit, or sometimes my symptoms would get worse. That’s just by things that I would read on the internet and research that I had done on my own.

DrMR: And that’s a good point there that we should quickly mention, which is we don’t want to force a dietary solution to a non-dietary problem. So you had gone through the dietary steps. And I’m assuming you gave at least the paleo and the low FODMAP diet a trial. And for people watching this, we want to give diet it’s fair due. But we also want to know when to move beyond diet and not flounder in the dietary purgatory forever.

And so I’m glad that you did the dietary trials. But then you were reading the book protocol, which gave you, okay, diet hasn’t done it yet. Let’s not try to force that. And let’s now escalate these. And it’s also, I think, notable to mention patience can be important. Some people will respond only after being on antimicrobials for a couple of days to about a week. And your case, you had to stick with it and get to, I’m guessing, maybe 5 or 6 weeks of total time on the antimicrobials before you started seeing some improvement. Is that about accurate?

Funtional Medicine Formulations

TB: Yep, that’s right. I had tried some of the antimicrobials before, in particular, oil of oregano. I had tried that. One of the podcasts I listened to is Ben Greenfield, and he has one of those that he recommends for gut issues. But by itself, I had no improvement at all.

DrMR: This is another key point. And this is something I probably harp on in the book, which is there’s not necessarily a magic protocol. But there is really no magic process if you will. And this is one of the things I see for many people, which is they try one thing in isolation or another thing in isolation. But they’re not sequencing these things in the right order in laying this foundational aspect, building on top of that, and then building on top of that, kind of like this pyramid model. And that, in some cases, is the difference between success and failure.

So really, kudos to you for diligently working through the protocol because that’s, I think, again, sometimes the difference between succeeding and failing, which is having a map for how to apply these therapies and sequence them rather than just trying this, trying that, trying the other thing.

TB: I think that’s what I love most about the book is it gives you that map. And it’s really necessary. I’m surprised there aren’t more books like this to this point. There’s so much information about a diet or about a certain antimicrobial. But none of it is encompassing. It doesn’t fit together. There’s no laid-out plan. There’s no pyramid.

DrMR: Right, right.

TB: So that’s where the book comes in. That was helpful.

So after the 2 months, the second month of the antimicrobials, I felt great. I felt that I was cured of whatever it was. I had never been diagnosed. But my symptoms were gone. So I moved into the motility phase. And I started with the MotilPro.

After the first month, I was starting to experience some regression back to the same symptoms as before. So I went back to the book. And it said sometimes you just need more time. So I thought, well, maybe that’s it. Maybe I need to stay here a little longer. And I started the second month of the MotilPro.

At that point, towards the end of the month, the symptoms were still regressed. So I was kind of slowly moving back to where I was. All the symptoms were coming back, not as bad as they had been before. But I was going back in that direction.

So at that point, I decided to go back to the book and see what direction it told me to go. And I decided that the second phase of the antimicrobials with the additional add-ons would be prudent at that point.

DrMR: Yeah. And just to clarify, because this is a point that I specifically speak to in the book because this does happen where people go on antimicrobials. They improve. And then when they come off antimicrobials, they regress. And it’s not necessarily a hard thing to fix. And we do speak about that in the book, which is kind of extending your time on antimicrobials a little bit longer. So that’s essentially what you started on, plus some of the add-ons.

And just for people listening, there’s a couple add-ons for…Let’s say you’re buying a car. You can buy a regular car, or you can also get the upgraded turbo charge, plus the full power window package. You don’t need to buy the most expensive car or the fastest car on the market. So we start you off with kind of the basic model, so to speak. And then if you’re in this position of seeing some improvements, but then regressing, if we have to go through another course of antimicrobials, there’s some add-ons we can use to kind of enhance the results. And so that’s where you’re starting to now.

Funtional Medicine Formulations

TB: Yes. That’s what I decided to do. I went with all the add-ons, so the Biota-Dissolve

DrMR: Which is an anti-biofilm agent, just for people listening, which some bacteria and fungus can form this protective coating over themselves. And that can be one of the causes of these symptoms that improve, regress, improve, regress. And so using an agent that breaks apart this film, this protective coating and allows the antimicrobials to penetrate the organism can be helpful. So, yeah, that’s one of the things in the add-on package

TB: Using that along with NAC and the Artemesinin, that, as well.

So I’ve just started the first week of the second month. And at this point, I haven’t noticed the same benefit as I had before. So I’m kind of waiting and hoping that I get back to the place that I was at the end of the first 2-month protocol. But I’m not there yet. So that’s kind of where I’m at at the moment.

DrMR: This is a great time snippet because you’re not someone who’s fully gone through everything and gotten all the way out of the woods. So this is kind of an interesting time to check in.

So just to recap, you’ve seen results. Really, it sounds like you haven’t seen this level of improvement prior until doing the Healthy Gut, Healthy You protocol. But you haven’t made it all the way out of the protocol. And this, I think, is a key thing to mention because some books will give you a helpful protocol. I don’t think there’s any gut books, as you mentioned a moment ago, that really give you as in-depth of a map for improving your gut health as my book does.

But even beyond that, there are also some tips for people who improve and then regress because this sometimes happens. When someone does a line of therapy, they feel great. But sometimes what’s left out of the testimonial or the marketing literature for a book or course or whatever is the people who did great, and then later on regressed.

When someone does a line of therapy, they feel great. But sometimes what’s left out of the testimonial for a book or course or whatever is the people who later on regressed Click To Tweet

And I built specifically into the book protocol what to do when that happens. And fortunately, this is an outgrowth of what I see in the clinic where, when you’re following up with people every month, you see one group of patients uses this protocol. They feel better, and they never look back. But another group improves, and then they start regressing after a number of months. So it’s not necessarily difficult. It’s just knowing what to do.

And so that’s right where you are, Travis. And you may need to give it a little while longer. I believe you said you’re only a week in. So you may need a little bit longer with the more advanced antimicrobial protocol to get there.

And this is funny; I’m having a conversation with a patient in the clinic right now. And what I tell my patients is the fact that you responded to this antimicrobial nudge to the microbiota tells us we’re doing the right thing. It’s just sometimes we need to do the right thing a little longer.

And the analogy I like to use is the injured knee analogy. If you hurt your knee and you are wearing a brace for a while and doing some rehab and feeling better, but you went back to playing sports too soon, you might see your knee pain regress. And so it’s not necessarily a big deal. We’ve got to get back on the rehab protocol, wear the brace for a little while longer, stay in that post-injury rehab phase just a bit longer. And sometimes that’s really all that we need to do to fully get someone over the hump.

So this is actually a great point in time to check in on it. And it would be great if we can get another snippet from you when you’re on the other side of the hump to put these together.

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DrMR: Do you have any questions for me, I guess, while you have me here? And then do you have any words that you want to offer people listening in close?

TB: One thing that I’ve skipped forward to in the book is how you eventually—and I think this is a mistake I may have made when I came off of the antimicrobials—the proper procedure to start stepping away from some of these supplements that you go through.

What I did, when I got done with the second month of the first antimicrobial protocol is I basically quit all of the antimicrobials along with the probiotics and was just on the MotilPro. I thought I was done. I thought I was, like I said, cured. So I didn’t see the need for those things anymore.

But when I looked at toward the back of the book, it shows what order to come off of these things. And actually, I should have stayed on the probiotics while I was still taking MotilPro. Do you think that affected my regression?

DrMR: It certainly could have. And this is why I do recommend when people read the protocol that they read through it fully first before doing it because you want to make sure you understand the whole map so that you don’t just follow part of the map and then in your case, maybe jump ship prematurely, which is fine. This is part of the learning process. I understand the spirit of feeling better and, “All right, on with my life!” I totally get that and appreciate that. I think that’s probably a healthy psychology to have.

However, coming back to the rehab analogy, we don’t want to get you back onto the sporting field too early post-rehab. And so it sounds like that may have been what happened. And what likely happened here was there was some dysbiosis in your but, some imbalances in the fungus, bacteria, and like organisms in the gut that was improving from the protocol. And you got to a point where your symptoms were gone. And that’s fantastic.

But instead of weaning yourself back down off of the supports into a normal life, you kind of jumped there. So instead of a stair step, it was just like a cliff. And what may have happened there was you opened the door for those imbalances to come creeping back. And the probiotics are actually a type of antimicrobial. And this is one of the things, as you know, I talk about in the book. I think it’s really underappreciated that probiotics can fight things like small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and fungus and yeast.

And we haven’t done, obviously, any testing. And you really don’t need to. We just need to understand that there’s some imbalances in the gut. We don’t need to know exactly what they are. We need to know if you have symptoms, you can presume that there are some imbalances in the gut. And then we can use these tools to rebalance you.

Animation Gut 1And so everything was working according to plan. But we didn’t follow the plan all the way as we should have. And so we saw the gut come back to balance. And then that equaled your symptoms going away. Fantastic. But then there was a cliff right down to appropriate not the follow-up and follow through. So when I tell people to really follow the book protocol, it’s for a good reason because these are all things I’ve learned through hundreds of patients every years for multiple and multiple years. You start to see how these things play out.

And while my ultimate objective is to get you and anyone else to a point where they have the broadest diet possible and a minimum amount of supplements possible, we want to make sure that we don’t fall off a cliff to get there and that we don’t go on to the program and wean off of the program just so we avoid any of these problems like this.

But this is actually a few examples that are really, really poignant because these are things that will affect a lot of people. So I’m glad. Don’t take this the wrong way, but I’m glad you’re making some of these mistakes because they’re really valuable learning points for people.

TB: Sure. That’s why I brought that up. To everyone out there, read through the whole program before you decide that you’re going to stop anything. It’s important, like you said, to know the whole plan before you decide to jump off a cliff.

Going back to knowing the whole plan, one of the reasons I was going that far ahead in the book was I wanted to see the end result. What kind of supplements did you recommend once everything is said and done?

And that’s another question I had. I was surprised to see such a high dosage of probiotics, even after you make it to—I forget—I guess, the eighth step, the Enjoy and Have Fun step. I was hoping to get to a point to where probiotics would not be something I needed to worry about. But from what the book says, that’s not the case. It may be something that you recommend on an ongoing basis even after symptoms have been gone for some time.

DrMR: And there’s a key word there, which is “may.” So specifically in the protocol, we have you stay on the probiotics for a term. So you hit your peak levels of improvements. And you wean off a number of things. And you’re left with a couple things. But—and this is an important thing to be clear on—you want to test or wean off of the probiotics. And only stay on them if you notice your symptoms regress when you come off of them. So staying on a probiotic is only dependent upon someone coming off them and noticing they do better when they’re on.

And what this really does is it helps answer the question of who should be on them in the long term, and how do we get to the most minimal protocol? Now, most people can come off most probiotics and be okay. But some people do notice—and usually what this looks like is, using loose stools as an example—their stools look great. They come off probiotics and their stools don’t go back to normal, but maybe they’re a little bit loose. And so people notice, “Yeah, if I take my probiotics every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, that’s enough to keep my stools looking consistent and well-formed.”

Irritable BowelI also mention in the book that you want to periodically revisit this wean off because what happens at month 4 may be different at month 8 or month twelve. So it’s important to periodically revisit weaning off of all the supports so that you know if you’re someone who can be on nothing and be okay or maybe needs a little bit of support. Or maybe if you’re someone who has a very severe case of IBS or IBD, you may need even a little bit more support.

So there’s no right or wrong answer there. But what we want to do is stair step to getting to a point where we’re on the minimal dose of any kind of support in the long term. And that will be taken on a case-by-case basis.

TB: Well, my next question was—and I think you just kind of answered it—was I know the dosage of the probiotics that you were recommending people to stay on. In the book, it says a teaspoon of the probiotics, which would actually be, according to the website, 4 billion on the dosage.

Now, when you go to the store and you buy probiotics, generally you can’t even find a 4 billion most of the time. But a hundred billion is a high dosage from what I’ve seen and what’s offered. So it sounds like from what you’re saying, is a probiotic may be necessary. And the dosage will vary, depending on the person and the symptoms.

DrMR: Right, right. And coming back to the point from a moment ago, which is, as part of that step 8, which is maintenance and fun, find the minimal effective dose. So really what this comes down to said succinctly is you’re working toward a minimal effective dose. And for everyone, that’s going to be a little bit different.

So I don’t give a specific dose because it would be incorrect for me to say, “The maintenance dose of this probiotic is 50 billion CFU” because for some people, that’ll be too much. And they won’t need it. And for other people, it won’t be enough. So it’s a great question and definitely something I hope we help aid other people in having clarity on, which is the minimal effective dose could be anything. And just because the book protocol gives you 1 dose, from there, when you’re trying to find the minimal, it could be any derivative of that full dose.

The book protocol gives you 1 dose, from there, when you’re trying to find the minimal, it could be any derivative of that full dose Click To Tweet

TB: I understand. Yeah, that makes sense.

When you’re trying to determine probiotics—or, I guess, I was going to ask about dose—but how do you consider things like natural probiotics, like a kombucha or a sauerkraut. Do you consider those as…How do you put those into the equation? Do you factor them in at all? And how much of a probiotic are you actually getting from those kinds of sources?

DrMR: Well, you can look on the label to get a read for what the probiotics are in those different foods. There’s not one answer that equates to kimchi to sauerkraut and to kombucha. They’re all going to be a little bit different in both their probiotic makeup and their dose.

But as I mentioned in the book, I think probiotics in your food—so probiotic-rich foods—are definitely a part of a healthy diet. They won’t be for everyone. Some people will notice they don’t do well on those foods. But I think the majority will be okay with those. And they’re definitely something I’d incorporate into your diet.

And that would be a foundational aspect of trying to incorporate fermented foods into your diet. And I wouldn’t try to offset dose for dose, but rather build those into your diet. And then you’ll also have your support supplemental probiotics. And then with time, you’ll go through the exercise of trying to find the minimal effective dose. And hopefully, your minimal effective dose will be nothing. But if you need a little bit to supplement in addition to what you’re getting in your diet, then you’ll figure that out when you go through that wean off process.

So they’re both something to be considered. And hopefully you can get there just with food. But if not, you can use whatever minimal dose of probiotics that you need.

TB: And those kinds of foods, are those okay during the antimicrobial step?

DrMR: Oh, absolutely. Yeah, absolutely.

TB: Okay. That is all the questions I have for you at the moment.

DrMR: Cool. Well, this is great. This turned out to be kind of half, I guess, conversation about your success and then also half Q&A and typical stumbling blocks. So I think this’ll actually be helpful in 2 veins for people. So thank you, Travis, for taking the time.

Any parting words you want to leave people with?

TB: Just have faith in the process. And if you’re like me, I made it through 4 days of fasting, many different diets that were not necessarily convenient and a whole month of antimicrobials before I noticed any benefit at all. But it was at that point in the process, I’m glad that I didn’t give up because that’s when I did notice more of a benefit than I’ve had in as long as I can remember. So, you have to hang in there.

DrMR: Yeah. Sage advice. Well, thank you again, Travis, for taking the time to speak with us. And then shoot us a note when you’re out of the woods. I’d love to follow you again then.

TB: Sure. That’d be great!

DrMR: Awesome. Thanks again, Travis. Take care.

TB: Thank you.

What do you think? I would like to hear your thoughts or experience with this.

Discussion

I care about answering your questions and sharing my knowledge with you. Leave a comment or connect with me on social media asking any health question you may have and I just might incorporate it into our next listener questions podcast episode just for you!

35 thoughts on “Solutions for Gas, Bloating and Loose Stools Using the Healthy Gut, Healthy You Protocol

  1. I just finished you book, ordered my supplements and am starting myself, my daughter and my husband on the protocol next week. I do well on a Paleo/Whole 30 diet, but my husband and daughter don’t see any improvement, so I’m going to start them on a low FODMAP diet right off the bat.

    I’m confused…The Low FODMAP with SCD diet allows WAY more foods than the regular Low FODMAP diet. I would have thought it would be more restrictive. But it allows artichoke hearts, broccoli, brussel sprouts, bananas, lentils, almonds, peanuts, and cabbage, to name a few, that are on the “AVOID” list of the regular low FODMAP print out.

    Can you please clarify? I’m obviously leaning toward using the SCD version as it is much less restrictive but I want to make sure I get the most bang for my 3-week-long-buck!

    Can you please explain why there are foods that are allowed on the SCD printout that are not allowed on the other two low FODMAP diets? Thanks!

  2. I have read thru the book 5 or 6 times and still do not understand which probiotics to take if you have SIBO. Could you please reference a page for that information. That would be very helpful.

    Thanks,
    Ann

    1. Hi Ann,

      For SIBO, you’d follow the same protocol outlined in the book – the lacto/bifido blend, soil based, and s. boulardii. The protocol can be found on page 270 of the book. Hope this helps!

  3. I just finished you book, ordered my supplements and am starting myself, my daughter and my husband on the protocol next week. I do well on a Paleo/Whole 30 diet, but my husband and daughter don’t see any improvement, so I’m going to start them on a low FODMAP diet right off the bat.

    I’m confused…The Low FODMAP with SCD diet allows WAY more foods than the regular Low FODMAP diet. I would have thought it would be more restrictive. But it allows artichoke hearts, broccoli, brussel sprouts, bananas, lentils, almonds, peanuts, and cabbage, to name a few, that are on the “AVOID” list of the regular low FODMAP print out.

    Can you please clarify? I’m obviously leaning toward using the SCD version as it is much less restrictive but I want to make sure I get the most bang for my 3-week-long-buck!

    Can you please explain why there are foods that are allowed on the SCD printout that are not allowed on the other two low FODMAP diets? Thanks!

  4. Hi,
    I bought Dr. Ruscio’s book and would like to buy his supplements and follow the plan. However I live in Europe and the probiotic supplements could take 10+ days to be delivered here and since they require refrigeration they would almost surely not survive the trip. The other supplements do not have this problem.

    Which alternative probiotic would Dr. Ruscio recommend? Is VSL#3 a good substitute for example? Thanks.

  5. Hi,
    I bought Dr. Ruscio’s book and would like to buy his supplements and follow the plan. However I live in Europe and the probiotic supplements could take 10+ days to be delivered here and since they require refrigeration they would almost surely not survive the trip. The other supplements do not have this problem.

    Which alternative probiotic would Dr. Ruscio recommend? Is VSL#3 a good substitute for example? Thanks.

  6. Good morning!
    Ok so my question is somewhat related to this article. I’m on step 2 of the great in 8 plan (have been for about 2 weeks) and my biggest problems were sulfur smelling gas after eating larger meals/certain foods, bloating, loose stools/constipation (I’ve left comments explaining everything before so long story short, been to the GI doc since March after a 24 hour stomach bug and tried xiafaxan 3 times, 1 false positive SIBO test, followed up with a second test which turned out false, had a colonoscopy that turned out perfectly normal, 2 stool tests that came back negative for h pylori. so I quit going to her and decided to try your book) anyways, step 2 has helped with the gas and to be quite honest, with thanksgiving and having family in town, my low FODMAP diet has gone out the window and my stomach hasn’t produced sulfur gas as much like it normally would have. So that’s a win. But still have bloat and stool leaves residue in bowl (I’ve always had ibs-c my whole life, so that’s not normal for me). With that being said, I’m gonna stay on step 2 for awhile longer.

    Here’s my question though:

    I’ve been doing research on hydrogen sulfide SIBO. (Brought it up to my GI doc and she had no freakin clue what I was talking about) but I Found an article telling me that if someone with hydrogen sulfide SIBO takes bismuth (like Pepto Bismal), their stool may turn dark or even black and that can be one way to diagnose hydrogen sulfide SIBO since there isn’t a widely available test yet. Well yesterday, I felt nauseous so I took pepto bismal for the first time in YEARS, and sure enough my stool was very dark today. Do you think that article gave accurate advice and I could have hydrogen sulfide SIBO? I know the great in 8 plan is for all types of SIBO but it would be awesome to know what is going on because my doc’s diagnosis was “post infectious IBS” and that’s more frustrating than anything haha

      1. Thank you very much! I appreciate you response 🙂
        One more question..constipation has gone way up after starting Step 2 of the great in 8 plan. However, it has also improved my worst symptom (the worst smelling gas you will ever smell) but I’m almost 99% sure the probiotics are causing that problem (i’m taking the lowest recomended dose of every probiotic/digestive enzyme/adrenal support too)…. I swear somewhere in the book Dr. Ruscio said Magnesium could help? I’m trying to find that part again but figured it could be worthwhile to ask yall on here. If so, what form of magnesium? I definitely don’t want to stop taking the probiotics either because I really do think they are fixing my gut bacteria.

        Thank you once again!

  7. Good morning!
    Ok so my question is somewhat related to this article. I’m on step 2 of the great in 8 plan (have been for about 2 weeks) and my biggest problems were sulfur smelling gas after eating larger meals/certain foods, bloating, loose stools/constipation (I’ve left comments explaining everything before so long story short, been to the GI doc since March after a 24 hour stomach bug and tried xiafaxan 3 times, 1 false positive SIBO test, followed up with a second test which turned out false, had a colonoscopy that turned out perfectly normal, 2 stool tests that came back negative for h pylori. so I quit going to her and decided to try your book) anyways, step 2 has helped with the gas and to be quite honest, with thanksgiving and having family in town, my low FODMAP diet has gone out the window and my stomach hasn’t produced sulfur gas as much like it normally would have. So that’s a win. But still have bloat and stool leaves residue in bowl (I’ve always had ibs-c my whole life, so that’s not normal for me). With that being said, I’m gonna stay on step 2 for awhile longer.

    Here’s my question though:

    I’ve been doing research on hydrogen sulfide SIBO. (Brought it up to my GI doc and she had no freakin clue what I was talking about) but I Found an article telling me that if someone with hydrogen sulfide SIBO takes bismuth (like Pepto Bismal), their stool may turn dark or even black and that can be one way to diagnose hydrogen sulfide SIBO since there isn’t a widely available test yet. Well yesterday, I felt nauseous so I took pepto bismal for the first time in YEARS, and sure enough my stool was very dark today. Do you think that article gave accurate advice and I could have hydrogen sulfide SIBO? I know the great in 8 plan is for all types of SIBO but it would be awesome to know what is going on because my doc’s diagnosis was “post infectious IBS” and that’s more frustrating than anything haha

      1. Thank you very much! I appreciate you response 🙂
        One more question..constipation has gone way up after starting Step 2 of the great in 8 plan. However, it has also improved my worst symptom (the worst smelling gas you will ever smell) but I’m almost 99% sure the probiotics are causing that problem (i’m taking the lowest recomended dose of every probiotic/digestive enzyme/adrenal support too)…. I swear somewhere in the book Dr. Ruscio said Magnesium could help? I’m trying to find that part again but figured it could be worthwhile to ask yall on here. If so, what form of magnesium? I definitely don’t want to stop taking the probiotics either because I really do think they are fixing my gut bacteria.

        Thank you once again!

  8. I just purchased the book and I am hoping it will help me; however, my husband has had several issues that I think it can help with also. He has been diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis which is an autoimmune disease and the book mentions that the plan can help with some autoimmune problems. No one in his family has ever had RA and he has also had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma treated with chemo and radiation therapy. We tease that these treatments may have caused mutations in his DNA or other aspects that have caused him to get diseases that we have no history for in his family. He has gall bladder issues that cause an overactive or under-active gall bladder. There seems to be no reason to have it removed; however, he also has abdominal pain, cramping, gas, loose stools to diarrhea off an on and all his tests come back normal. Do you think this protocol could help with all of this? He also cannot gain weight unless he eats a lot of ice cream or cake or other high carb items. Muscle mass is hard to build and he usually will not hurt the next day if he does an extremely high amount of weight work or work in the yard or on the house. His RA causes aches and pains and he has shooting nerve pains frequently, almost daily. He is taking Plaquenil (about 5 years) for the RA and has begun taking methotrexate about 2 months ago, but we are concerned that the methotrexate is now causing more aches in his hands than helping. I guess I am rambling to get to my question. I want to know if it will improve his RA symptoms most of all.

    1. Hi Virginia,

      I won’t be able to tell you for sure if this protocol will help your husband, since there’s so much about his medical history and condition that I don’t know, but the protocol is generally helpful for gut issues, which can generally be helpful for autoimmune conditions. If he’d like some personalized advice, he’s welcome to sign up as a patient (https://www.drruscio.com/gethelp). Hope this helps!

  9. I just purchased the book and I am hoping it will help me; however, my husband has had several issues that I think it can help with also. He has been diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis which is an autoimmune disease and the book mentions that the plan can help with some autoimmune problems. No one in his family has ever had RA and he has also had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma treated with chemo and radiation therapy. We tease that these treatments may have caused mutations in his DNA or other aspects that have caused him to get diseases that we have no history for in his family. He has gall bladder issues that cause an overactive or under-active gall bladder. There seems to be no reason to have it removed; however, he also has abdominal pain, cramping, gas, loose stools to diarrhea off an on and all his tests come back normal. Do you think this protocol could help with all of this? He also cannot gain weight unless he eats a lot of ice cream or cake or other high carb items. Muscle mass is hard to build and he usually will not hurt the next day if he does an extremely high amount of weight work or work in the yard or on the house. His RA causes aches and pains and he has shooting nerve pains frequently, almost daily. He is taking Plaquenil (about 5 years) for the RA and has begun taking methotrexate about 2 months ago, but we are concerned that the methotrexate is now causing more aches in his hands than helping. I guess I am rambling to get to my question. I want to know if it will improve his RA symptoms most of all.

    1. Hi Virginia,

      I won’t be able to tell you for sure if this protocol will help your husband, since there’s so much about his medical history and condition that I don’t know, but the protocol is generally helpful for gut issues, which can generally be helpful for autoimmune conditions. If he’d like some personalized advice, he’s welcome to sign up as a patient (https://www.drruscio.com/gethelp). Hope this helps!

  10. I’m curious about the efficacy of the herbal antimicrobial therapy in cases of C. Dif. Although asymptomatic regarding loose stools, I tested positive for toxins A and B. Vancomycin doesn’t have promising success rates. Are there any modifications to the antimicrobial phases that Dr. Ruscio would make to treat C. Dif. in someone with ulcerative colitis symptoms (bleeding) for the past year?

      1. Hi Drew, thanks for the quick response! I see that he mentions C. Dif. as needing to be removed in the herbal antimicrobial chapter, but I was wondering if the standard phases that he uses would still apply, or if the patient might want to use some of the additional supplements of Level 2 as well (artemisinin, NAC, Biofilm Buster) since the direct target of the treatment is known.

        In other words, does Dr. Ruscio always stick to the strict levels of antimicrobial treatment? Or are there cases in which he will combine different elements from each of the levels to tailor it to a specific patient’s needs?

        1. Hi James,

          The protocol as written should still be good, though I’d run it by your doctor first to confirm.

  11. I’m curious about the efficacy of the herbal antimicrobial therapy in cases of C. Dif. Although asymptomatic regarding loose stools, I tested positive for toxins A and B. Vancomycin doesn’t have promising success rates. Are there any modifications to the antimicrobial phases that Dr. Ruscio would make to treat C. Dif. in someone with ulcerative colitis symptoms (bleeding) for the past year?

      1. Hi Drew, thanks for the quick response! I see that he mentions C. Dif. as needing to be removed in the herbal antimicrobial chapter, but I was wondering if the standard phases that he uses would still apply, or if the patient might want to use some of the additional supplements of Level 2 as well (artemisinin, NAC, Biofilm Buster) since the direct target of the treatment is known.

        In other words, does Dr. Ruscio always stick to the strict levels of antimicrobial treatment? Or are there cases in which he will combine different elements from each of the levels to tailor it to a specific patient’s needs?

        1. Hi James,

          The protocol as written should still be good, though I’d run it by your doctor first to confirm.

  12. I have read thru the book 5 or 6 times and still do not understand which probiotics to take if you have SIBO. Could you please reference a page for that information. That would be very helpful.

    Thanks,
    Ann

    1. Hi Ann,

      For SIBO, you’d follow the same protocol outlined in the book – the lacto/bifido blend, soil based, and s. boulardii. The protocol can be found on page 270 of the book. Hope this helps!

  13. Hi! This article was extremely helpful for me as I found myself in the exact same position as Travis. First round of antimicrobials went great (specifically the 2nd month–felt back to normal), regressed heavily during prokinetic, decided to add bio-film agents, got to second week of second month with the added agents (where I am currently) and I’m not feeling like I did the first time around but it sounds like according to this interview: that’s normal and I should keep going?

    I think my question is: at what point are the biofilm agents just not working for you?

    I know there’s a difference between a reaction and a die-off period. I read Dr. Ruscio’s conversation with Dr. Paul Anderson, but the symptoms sounded so close, and it sounds like the die-off period for biofilm agents might be longer? I’m wondering if my symptoms are normal and will eventually subside: bloating, distention, some constipation, fatigue, headaches, and a week of serious mood swings/depression which happened around the 5th-6th week and I’m hoping was the effect of the biofilms opening.

    I also read in that article that if you are experiencing extreme symptoms, to ease up on the agents so it’s not too uncomfortable, which I have done and has helped.

    I guess I’m wondering if I should stay on this course or not and at what point will I start to feel like that second month of the first round of antimicrobials when I felt almost back to 100%?

    Thanks!
    Amber

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