Digestive health is crucial to maintaining your overall health. While we mainly focus on retirement planning and how to secure your retirement, today, we’re going to be talking to a digestive health expert.
If you maintain good digestive health, you’ll improve your overall health, too.
As someone who is already retired or planning to retire, it’s crucial that you focus on your overall health. And your digestive system plays such a key role in your health. Dr. Norm Robillard spoke to us on our podcast this week, and he has excellent insight into maintaining the best digestive health possible.
Who is Dr. Norm Robillard? How Did He Get Started in Digestive Health?
Dr. Robillard is 65 now, and as a worker in the biotech industry, he started getting chronic acid reflux 17 years ago. He started taking medicine to help calm his symptoms, but nothing really helped. Prior to this, he never started a diet until his son said, “Hey dad, let’s go on a low carbohydrate diet together.”
Before losing a pound, he started to feel significantly better.
Removing carbohydrates improved the acid reflux so much that he started to dig into the science behind carbs. As a microbiologist already, he developed a new theory on the underlying cause of acid reflux. Since Dr. Robillard has grown many of the intestinal microbes in the lab before, he knew that these microbes:
- Prefer carbohydrates as fuel
- Produce multiple forms of gases
Dr. Robillard’s hadn’t been working well since he was in his 40s. He believes that many of the carbs he ate were escaping digestion in the gut and fueling those microbes that produce gas. His theory was that these microbes led to pressure in the gut, causing acid reflux.
Ultimately, he left his career as a microbiologist and started the Digestive Health Institute.
Now, Dr. Robillard consults with patients that have:
- Acid reflux
- Other gastrointestinal issues
Dr. Robillard’s Fast Tract Diet
Diets seem to pop up every year, and people often gravitate to Paleo, Keto and other really popular diets. For many people, these diets work wonders and help them lose weight and reach their dietary goals.
However, the Fast Tract Diet focuses on your digestive health to help you overcome some of the unpleasant digestive-related issues that you may have, such as GERD, acid reflux or IBS.
The Fast Tract Diet is on its second clinical study to see how it helps 90 people overcome acid reflux. Dr. Robillard was truly the first case study into the diet, and he went on a low carbohydrate diet.
However, it wasn’t until writing his first book that a close friend asked him a very important question: is it all carbs that are bad, or are some carbs worse than others?
That led to research on which types of carbs are hard to digest and are fermentable by bacteria. A few carbohydrates that made the list include:
- Fructose – well-studied and a large portion of the population cannot digest fructose
- Sugar alcohols
But this turned into a difficult question of how to create a way to utilize this diet in the real world. The answer was using the glycemic index to create a diet to understand what sugars may be left in the digestive system to ferment.
Through his own equation, which adds sugar alcohol and fiber into the mix, he developed the Fast Tract Diet.
The new equation leads to a new measurement: fermented potential (FP).
FP allows dieters to better understand how much of their food may become fermented. While some fermentation is good, too much is bad. Western diets are far less diverse than in other parts of the world, leading to a digestive system that doesn’t work as well.
Working With Your Diet to Fight Back Against Digestive Issues
The Fast Tract Diet is more of a program than a diet. Followers of the diet get access to an app that allows them to rapidly work through the program with an abundance of information at their fingertips.
- Work on diet and digestion. A focus on FP points is crucial to keeping fermented material under control.
- Focus on underlying causes of digestive issues. Don’t worry – the book covers all of these causes.
- Behavioral. Your behaviors can aid in your ability to digest your food properly. Meal spacing, intermittent fasting and timing of meals are all part of your behavior.
If you’re not allowing five hours between meals, your gut bacteria may be overfed, leading to more issues.
The Fast Tract Diet considers many factors that aren’t focused on with other diets.
For example, you may be eating rice, and it’s good for you, but how are you cooking it? Even when choosing rice, you need to choose rice that is:
- Easier to digest
Jasmine rice, for example, digests quickly, but you want to keep it to half a cup of rice to stop blood sugar spikes from occurring.
Fast Tract Diet puts all of this information to the forefront so that there’s an easy diet to follow that will allow you to maintain a diet that doesn’t make you feel bloated or cause acid flare ups.
Supplements and Digestive Health
Supplements, especially some probiotics, can help you keep your gut healthier, too. There are digestive enzymes and probiotics that can help aid in your digestion. In addition, stool analysis can be very beneficial because you can see which enzymes are low and not allowing your digestive system to run optimally.
In this case, you can supplement with certain enzymes that can help with digestion.
Apple cider vinegar may be beneficial for some people, but it depends on the type of reflux. If you feel like you have a sore throat or lump in your throat, apple cider vinegar is not a good option for you.
Dr. Robillard covered an immense amount of material with us, and it can be difficult to follow everything precisely. If you want to find out more information on the diet, you can follow the link below to the Digestive Health Institute.
If you need help trying to find peace of mind in your retirement, we can help.Click here to read our newest book, called Secure Your Retirement.