Your gastrointestinal system has to deal with a daily onslaught of toxins, food allergies, lectins, and GMO’s  that degrade the integrity of your digestive system. Are there any supplements that can help keep your digestive system in optimal health?

3. NAG

NAG is a monosaccharide derivative of glucose. NAG can correct an overactive immune system so that autoimmune reactions occur less often. The mechanisms of action believed to be behind correcting an overactive immune system is that NAG controls immune T-cell over activity and stabilizes mast cells.1 2

NAG is also involved in the repair of mucous membranes throughout the body. NAG can be supplemented to help repair the extracellular tissue and barrier of the gastrointestinal system. It also decreases the binding of some lectins (proteins that may damage the intestines) from food ingestion. NAG helps to correctly regulate your gut flora by maintaining the mucosal barrier and preventing SIBO from occurring. Finally, NAG prevents the excessive formation of the cytokines IL-1 and IL-6 which are detrimental to gut barrier function.3

NAG has also been shown in a recent study to reduce inflammation in the digestive tract in people suffering from IBD, leading to remission. NAG should not be used in people with yeast dysbiosis in the gut because it can increase virulence.4

Recommended NAG:

2. L-glutamine

L-glutamine is an amino acid that is used in the body for protein synthesis, regulation of pH balance in the kidneys, cellular energy, nitrogen donation, and a nontoxic transporter of ammonia in the blood. Intestinal cells consume more L-glutamine than anywhere else in the body does. L-glutamine is a major source of energy for the proliferation and differentiation of intestinal epithelial cells. This is why it is important for gut healing. L-glutamine maintains the gut barrier and helps maintain the mucus barrier. Supplementation of L-glutamine reduces hospital recovery time after surgery because it increases white blood cell activity at the sight of injury. 5 6 7

People with cancer should avoid L-glutamine supplementation because the cancer cells might use it for energy production and replicate faster. I do not recommend the use of L-glutamine in people with upper gut dysbiosis because it can increase virulence.8

Recommend L-glutamine:

1. Zinc Carnosine

Zinc carnosine is a supplement that is the combination of the mineral zinc and the amino acid carnosine. Zinc is beneficial in decreasing wound healing time and also increases immune functions. Carnosine is an amino acid that is highly concentrated in muscle tissue and has been shown to protect organs from oxidative stress.9

Zinc binds quickly to stomach tissue if taken on an empty stomach. If zinc is taken on an empty stomach, it causes severe stomach pain and gastritis. It has been theorized that zinc ions are highly soluble in stomach acid and have corrosive, antimicrobial, and immune stimulating properties that irritate the stomach tissue because of the direct absorption of the zinc ions. If you chelate zinc with carnosine, the chelation slows down the absorption and elimination of zinc from the stomach. 10 Zinc is then able to directly repair the stomach and intestinal tissue without irritating it so zinc carnosine may be taken on an empty stomach as needed. Zinc carnosine also protects the stomach lining for opportunistic H. pylori infection, and NSAID damage that cause ulcers that develop from long-term use of the medication.11

High doses of zinc carnosine may cause zinc toxicity and reduce immune function. Take no more than 45 mg of zinc carnosine each day or 100 mg of elemental Zinc daily. Zinc carnosine should be used with caution in people with histamine intolerance, because carnosine contains L-histidine which becomes histamine.

Recommended Zinc Carnosine: