The U.S. Department of Health and Services reports that 60 to 70 million people are affected by all digestive diseases.  Based on the fact that most people are consuming some form of the Standard American Diet (SAD), which consists of a lot of processed carbohydrates and meats and very little fruits and vegetables, this statistic is not surprising. Some of the most common digestive disorders include IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), Chrone’s disease, Ulcerative Colitis and Chronic Constipation. If you are someone who suffers with any of these conditions, there are some natural dietary changes you can make that may help you tremendously.
If you are not sure whether you have a digestive order, I’ve included a brief description of each of the ones mentioned above followed by some natural changes you can make that improve the majority if not all of these diseases and/or conditions. Even so, it is important that you get a proper diagnosis from a medical professional to ensure that you are following the right diet and treatment protocol for your condition.
IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a bowel disorder, not a disease. Symptoms include abdominal discomfort, bloating, diarrhea and constipation.
Chrone’s disease is a chronic condition that causes inflammation of the GI tract. The most commonly effected area is the small intestine, although it can occur anywhere in the digestive tract. It is said to be an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks the tissues of the digestive system. Although its cause may be genetic, there has also been research showing a connection between a bacteria that leads to illness in cattle and those with Chrone’s disease. Although inconclusive it is possible that a small percentage of pasteurized milk still containing this strain of bacteria could be at the route of Chrone’s disease. Symptoms of Chrone’s include diarrhea, abdominal pain and cramping, blood in stools, ulcers and weight loss. 
Ulcerative Colitis, also potentially an autoimmune disease, causes chronic inflammation in the large intestine and rectum. Small ulcers develop on the intestinal wall and can worsen to the point of needing surgery. Like Chrone’s, Ulcerative Colitis can cause bloody stools, diarrhea and abdominal pain. 
Extremely common, Chronic Constipation can cause someone to go days or weeks without a bowel movement. A person with a normal digestive system should go at least once per day, preferably 2 or 3 times a day. Long-term laxative use only makes things worse and can cause the digestive system to no longer work naturally without them over time. Sometimes IBS is at the route of constipation. Other times it can be caused by hypothyroidism. Diet as well is clearly at the source of constipation. 
So what are some things that you can do to prevent, improve or potentially cure these digestive issues, depending on the severity of your particular case?
#1 Avoid gluten containing grains
Sugar and processed carbohydrates do nothing more than aggravate digestive problems and feed the bad bacteria and yeast in the body. There is also information stating that gluten could be at the route of autoimmune disorders. Non-gluten whole grains include quinoa, amaranth, millet and buckwheat, but should not be eaten in excess for those with digestive trouble. 
#2 Include high fiber foods and supplements if necessary
Good bacteria is said to thrive on high fiber foods such as fruits and vegetables. Finding the right amount of soluable fiber that doesn’t make your symptoms worse is important, as a high amount of fiber can be helpful for some and not for others depending on what type of digestive disorder you have. If you choose to supplement with fiber, try organic psyllium or flax seeds. It’s also good to eliminate toxins with fresh vegetable juices, in which the fiber can be removed with the pulp if desired. 
#3 Boost healthy bacteria
I’ve seen many examples in which adding good bacteria back into the digestive tract has relieved symptoms and or the disorder all together. A good quality probiotic supplement can promote a healthy gut, improving immune system function, yeast overgrowth, food digestion and nutrient absorption. In fact, 80% of human health and immunity is said to originate in the gut. Another way to boost healthy bacteria is through fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, and cultured vegetables. 
#4 Supplement with fish oil or another source of Omega-3
Omegs-3 fatty acids are essential for a healthy digestive tract. They protect and prevent cell damage from toxins, reduce inflammation and help build a strong immune system. 
#5 Include coconut oil in your diet
Coconut oil is also said to have a number of healing properties, including reducing inflammation and repairing digestive tract damage. It also has antimicrobial properties that support healthy intestines. 
#6 Increase Vitamin D levels
Dr. Joseph Mercola, one of the biggest advocates for Vitamin D, tells us that this vital nutrient helps produce over 200 anti microbial peptides. The gut, where the majority of these peptides reside, is where they effectively break down food, detoxify the body and support healthy digestion. A deficiency in D can lead to inflammation and potentially autoimmune disorders. 
There are many other remedies you can try for digestive healthy including aloe vera gel and carminative herbs, which can be especially helpful in combination for chronic constipation. 
 Digestive.niddk.nih.gov (No date). Digestive diseases statistics for the united states. Retrieved from http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/statistics/statistics.aspx
 Mayoclinic.com (No date). Chrone's disease. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/crohns-disease/DS00104/DSECTION=symptoms
 Coronadobiosciences.com (No date). Autoimmune diseases. Retrieved from http://www.coronadobiosciences.com/patients/autoimmune-diseases.cfm
 Mercola, J. (2009, April 11). Natural constipation relief strategies you should know about. Retrieved from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/04/11/Natural-Constipation-Relief-Strategies-You-Should-Know-About.aspx
 Mercola, J. (2002, October 5). Dangerous grains. Retrieved from
 Stut, M. (2011, October 5). Omega 3 contribution in improving digestive health. Retrieved from http://www.sooperarticles.com/health-fitness-articles/digestion-issues-articles/omega-3-contribution-improving-digestive-health-655263.html
 Mercola, J. (2008, January 1). Does tainted milk cause crohn's disease? Retrieved from
 Mercola, J. (2010, February 20). Vitamin D fights crohn's disease.
 Jockers, D. (2012, June 30). Improve your digestion naturally. Retrieved from http://www.naturalnews.com/036351_digestion_remedies_solutions.html#ixzz25uPP7XJa
Published On: September 21, 2012