For years, many have struggled to know why some dietary dietary supplements, parts of meals, even medicine clearly exerted useful well being results—however weren’t absorbed by the gastrointestinal (GI) tract). Some compounds with substantial well being advantages are utterly inert in people, ingested after which flushed down the bathroom.
Take curcumin, for instance. This element of the spice, turmeric, taken orally is sort of completely unabsorbed. In case you took 100 mg of curcumin, 99 mg or so is undigested, unprocessed, unmetabolized by your GI digestive course of and handed out in a bowel motion. But the proof is obvious: curcumin reduces measures of irritation akin to C-reactive protein, reduces arthritis ache, and exerts metabolic advantages akin to lowered blood sugar and triglycerides. Many efforts have due to this fact been made to attempt to drive absorption of curcumin to extend efficacy: mixed with piperine, bioperine, nanoparticle emulsions, surfactants, chelating brokers, and others. Absorption can certainly be elevated, although nobody has but demonstrated a rise in useful results with enhanced absorption.
Think about this: Curcumin has additionally been proven to extend intestinal mucus manufacturing and the intestinal immune response, explaining why curcumin, working inside the GI tract, improves the intestinal barrier to entry of bacterial breakdown merchandise. This will clarify why curcumin has been proven to scale back endotoxemia, i.e., the entry of bacterial lipopolysaccharide toxin into the bloodstream, explaining why curcumin reduces body-wide irritation, reduces measures of irritation like C-reactive protein, reduces arthritis ache, and improves metabolic measures akin to blood sugar and triglycerides. Curcumin additionally modifies bacterial species composition of intestine flora, decreasing fecal species of Proteobacteria (e.g., E. coli, Klebsiella, and different fecal microbes) and Enterococcus. Do you see the place I’m going with this? If curcumin is understood to exert essential results inside the GI tract, then possibly you do NOT need to drive absorption and also you need most focus inside the intestines, not within the bloodstream.
There are different compounds which have useful results but are poorly-absorbed or not absorbed in any respect, akin to:
- Berberine—Exerting most of the similar advantages as curcumin however with better antibacterial and antifungal results. It additionally boosts Akkermansia numbers within the GI tract, a serious determinant of metabolic well being.
- Inexperienced tea catechins—Related to weight reduction, discount of hysteria, improved cognitive perform, and different useful results. Inexperienced tea catechins are recognized to crosslink mucin proteins inside intestinal mucus, changing it to a much less liquid to a extra gel-like, much less penetrable, consistency.
- Capsaicin—That is the element of peppers that’s liable for the new feeling within the mouth. Capsaicin helps “mildew” the microbial composition of bowel flora rising, for example, essential species akin to Faecalibacterium prausniztrii, the principle producer of butyrate that mediates an extended checklist of well being advantages for people.
- Quercetin—Quercetin is a flavonoid sourced from meals akin to apples, onions, broccoli, and inexperienced tea. Whereas various essential well being advantages have been documented, quercetin could also be particularly useful in bettering insulin responses and decreasing blood sugar, although there’s minimal absorption.
You possibly can admire that there was lots of wasted effort in attempting to plan methods to extend absorption, when the actual advantages might derive from NOT being absorbed and exerting results on the GI microbiome, the intestinal mucus and immune boundaries, and endotoxemia. You can even admire that there’s a lot of selling occurring to advertise gross sales of variations of, say, curcumin, with enhanced absorption which will show to be much less efficient than non-absorbable kinds. It highlights the large function that the GI microbiome and GI tract play in quite a few human well being circumstances. In a future DrDavisInfiniteHealth.com weblog put up, I shall talk about all of the methods which you could simply, safely, inexpensively, successfully reap the benefits of methods that enhance your GI intestinal barrier and scale back endotoxemia to acquire enormous well being advantages and ignore lots of pointless or deceptive advertising and marketing efforts.