Are you ready to jumpstart your gut health and unlock the benefits of a 48-hour gut reset program?
The Elemental Diet - An Underutilized and Multifaceted Tool for Many Gastrointestinal Annoyances
Elemental diets are powdered formulas that contain all of our necessary proteins and nutrients in their simplest, digestible forms.
Elemental diets borrow the concept of tube-feeding, but in the form of liquid shakes taken orally to meet all nutrition needs.
For instance, instead of challenging your digestive system with a heavy steak, the elemental diet contains the complete individual amino acids, already in their absorbable “elemental” form, without the need for digestive action by our stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, and more.
If you’ve ever desired a big red RESET button for your digestive system - the elemental diet does that for you.
While elemental diet programs typically involve expensive 14-day protocols - the more extended timeframe is geared toward more progressed conditions like Irritable Bowel Syndrome, SIBO, Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, and other inflammatory, malabsorption syndromes.
You can also use the elemental diet periodically to help support healing from flare-ups in cases of gluten exposure and other sensitivity reactions.
The 14 days are necessary to fully starve the overgrown bacteria without starving the good bacteria you want. Any longer than 14 days and good bacteria may start dying off in too high of proportions.
Rest assured, a lot of changes start occurring in as little as 48 hours…
The gut mucosa is constantly refreshing itself as frequently as every 7 days, so without inflammatory insults from our food, or from poorly digested foods, the system can rest, heal, and inflammation can quiet down.
The gut also needs a period of fasting (12-16 hours) from your last meal to fully break down and get the full benefits of that day’s meals.
So while 14-day protocols can be fantastic for challenging diet conditions without the use of antibiotics or with less disruptive dietary changes - they’re not for everyone. The 14-day strategy should also be monitored professionally, with adjustments as needed.
For you and I, we can leverage the incredible power of an elemental diet over shorter time frames of 1-5 days.
The magic number I’ve found for self-motivation, cost, and benefit is 48 hours…
Benefits of a 48-Hour Gut Reset
A 48-hour reset using the same strategy may be the recharge your system needs to recover from holidays and celebrations, improve gut motility, and help jumpstart a program to starve unwanted flora and increase the diversity of gut microbes - essential to a normal-functioning digestive system.
A periodic 48-hour reset can leverage the power of elemental diets for general bloating, distention, gastrointestinal upset, and stubborn weight loss (or trouble with gain). It can allow your system to finally catch up on the food you ate in the prior 24-48 hours, fully process it, and let the bacteria, mucosa, and enzyme systems recover optimally.
Because many of us have food available 24/7, our systems are always “digesting” and rarely getting the breaks we need to fully digest and ferment food, while completely eliminating wastes.
So many of us are stuck not absorbing nutrients optimally, and worse, recycling wastes back into our system from poor elimination.
Our hunger hormones and hormones that trigger fullness are hijacked - and our system is in a constant effort to keep blood sugar stable and happy without it spiking and crashing every few hours.
Our guts are tired, cranky, overloaded, and not working up to capacity - they need a break!
The 48-hour gut reset can help…
Our schedules can start to get too controlled by sugar cravings, coffee cravings, snack cravings, and the “hangry” you feel if you have to wait an extra 30 minutes to eat.
These short-term compensations, including chronic bloating and discomfort, can all find calm in as little as 48 hours - which is why a 48-hour gut reset can calm a lot of your mild GI annoyances and get YOU back in control of the high-quality nutrition you put in your body.
Our ancient hunger systems aren't equipped to battle 24-7 food, health-washed marketing, and the chemical hijacking of our hormones.
While this reality is not your fault, it’s further reason why an occasional 48-hour gut reset is essential to put you back in the driver's seat of your food enjoyment.
Elemental diet powders provide essential nutrients that promote mucosal healing, support gut motility and stimulate good gut flora.
Traditionally elemental diets contained a lot of simple sugar in the form of dextrose - yet formulas have evolved to offer low-carb, “dextrose-free” versions that leverage the metabolic, gut, and brain benefits of MCTs.
This powerful strategy can also help reduce inflammation so you can absorb even more nutrients while feeling less bloated and distended.
How the 48-Hour Gut Reset Works…
Depending on your calorie needs, most will need just one bag of the elemental diet formula.
While someone might be eating 3000 calories in a day, their true needs may be less, especially as most of us overeat.
Each bag contains 36 servings of 150 calories each or 5400 total calories per bag. Each bag could supply up to 2700 calories for two days. Larger individuals like myself may need a second bag to meet higher needs.
It does not contain whey, flavorings, or artificial sugars. The main calorie source is medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) that support metabolism and counteract yeast growth in the gut naturally. They are turned into ketones that the brain uses for energy and fuel as well.
Calculate your needs based on height, age, weight, and activity.
-2100 Calories: 14 servings/day
-2400 Calories: 16 servings/day
-2700 Calories: 18 servings/day
-3000 Calories: 20 servings/day
**Over 2700 calories requires 2 bags of elemental powder
Physicians' Elemental Diet Does Not Contain:
- Yeast – Derived Ingredient
- Dairy Products
- Artificial Colors
- Artificial Flavors
Individual caloric needs may range from 2000-3300 calories/day. To calculate your calorie needs, you can calculate on your own.
Here are the ingredients:
Mix shakes throughout the day, sipping them each hour. You can mix all at once and store in the refrigerator and use as needed over the 48 hours.
Avoid eating any food during the program - all calorie, macronutrient, and micronutrient needs will be met by the meal-replacing elemental shakes. This is key for resting the gut.
Tips and Expectations for Best Results on a 48-Hour Gut Reset:
- It is normal to have some loose, watery stools as your system is not getting the fiber it is used to. You may not see a bowel movement regularly as your body is able to absorb most of the formula as it’s already in its digested state. You’re giving your system a much-needed break - and using most of what you're consuming.
- Generally expect to lose a few pounds in the first few days, typically turning back to weight gain in longer protocols as your intestinal absorption of nutrients improves.
- Avoid drinking the shake all at once, it’s best to sip over 30-60 minutes - spreading out the calorie intake over the entire day. This way the solute doesn't hit your system all at once, potentially irritating the GI tract or creating sudden urges to use the restroom.
- Your body holds on to water weight with high carbohydrate intake and inflammation. You may find that you pee more. This benefit is associated with a better complexion, less puffiness, a flatter belly, and fewer feelings of fullness.
- Do not engage in moderate or high-intensity exercise as your body gets adjusted to the new calorie intake. Walks and normal day-to-day activities are encouraged.
- While black coffee is okay, we need occasional caffeine resets too, and it may be a good opportunity to give your system that caffeine reset you may need all the same.
It may be beneficial to start cutting back on coffee leading into the program so that you’re past any caffeine headaches or other withdrawal symptoms and can focus on the gut reset during the 48 hours.
- If your mild symptoms remain through the program, it may mean you’re a candidate for a longer program or need further investigation such as microbiome stool testing, breath testing, or other diagnostic care through a primary care and gastrointestinal provider.
This reset is not intended as a clinical program. Think of the 48-Hour Gut Reset as a periodic “detox program”.
- Some like the taste better by mixing with club soda for different textures and variety. Some may add a sprinkle of salt for flavor.
- Because the shakes involve a concentration of nutrients, don’t be afraid to drink water separately from the shakes. If you feel dry mouth or dehydrated, you may need some outside water intake in addition to the shakes.
Remember, you can do anything for 48 hours - and the benefits can leave you feeling clear-headed, and less bloated, and you may find you sleep more soundly - all essential to healing.
Get your confidence back and jumpstart lifestyle wellness with the 48-hour reset using Physicians' Elemental Diet Dextrose-Free by Integrative Therapeutics.