More about Mucus than you even knew and wanted to know
Extract from the excellent book “The pH Miracle” by Dr. Robert O. Young and Shelley Redford Young
Although we tend to associate it with head colds and worse, mucus is, in fact, a normal secretion. It is a clear, slippery substance the body makes to protect the surfaces of membranes. One way it does that is by coating anything you ingest, even water. So it also engulfs any toxins you happen to take in, and in doing so it becomes thick, sticky, and cloudy (as we see when we suffer from colds) to “trap” the toxins and escort them out of the body. Most foods Americans eat most often cause that thickened mucus. They either contain toxins or break down in a toxic way in the digestive tract (or both).
The worst offenders are dairy products, followed by animal protein, white flour, processed foods, chocolate, coffee, and alcoholic beverages. (Vegetables do not cause the formation of this sticky mucus, which is just one more reason to feature them prominently in your diet.) Over time, these foods can encrust the intestines with thick mucus and the fecal material and other debris it traps. This slime is bad enough on its own before you consider that it creates an environment that also promotes the growth of negative microforms.
Emotional stress, environmental pollution, lack of exercise, insufficient digestive enzymes, and absence ofprobiotics in the small and large intestine all contribute to the buildup of that slime on the wall of the colon. With buildup, transit time for materials passing through the lower bowel increases. Low levels of fiber in your diet, slow it still further. As the gooey mass begins to stick to the wall of the colon, a pocket is formed between the mass and the wall, which is an ideal home for microforms. Material gradually adds itself to the slime, until much of it stops moving altogether. The colon absorbs what fluids are left, the buildup begins to harden, and the home for unfriendly organisms becomes a fortress.
Heartburn, gas, bloating, ulcers, nausea, and gastritis (irritation of the walls of the intestines due to gas and acid) are all a result of a gastrointestinal tract overgrown with microforms. So, too, is constipation, which in addition to being an unpleasant symptom causes more problems and more symptoms. Constipation often shows up as, or comes along with, a coated tongue, diarrhea, cramps, gas, foul odor, intestinal pain, and various forms of inflammation, such as colitis and diverticulitis. (We’ve all heard the remark that a self centered person thinks their “stuff ” does not stink. The solemn truth is, it is not supposed to! If it does, that’s Nature hammering a warning on the door.)
Worse, the microforms can actually bore through the colon wall into the bloodstream. That means not only that the microforms themselves have access to the entire body, but also that they bring their toxins and intestinal matter along with them into the blood. From there they can travel quickly and take hold anywhere in the body, invading cells, tissues, and organs easily enough. All this severely stresses the immune system and the liver, as they desperately try to ward off what does not belong. Unchecked, microforms burrow deeper into the tissues and organs, the central nervous system, the skeletal structure, the lymphatic system, and the bone marrow.
This is not simply a matter of clean pipes. This kind of impaction can affect all other parts of the body because it interferes with what should be automatic reflexes and sends inappropriate messages of its own. A reflex is a nerve pathway in which the impulse goes from the point of stimulation to the point of response without going through the brain-as when your doctor taps your knee with that little rubber hammer and your lower leg kicks out. Reflexes can also respond at places other than the one actually being stimulated. Your body is a mass of reflexes. Some key ones are in the lower bowel, connected via nerve pathways to every major organ system in the body. The impacted materials are like a whole squadron of little rubber hammers banging away in there, sending disruptive impulses to other parts of the body. (This is, for example, a major reason for headaches.) That alone can disturb and weaken any and all body systems.
The body creates mucus as a natural defense against acids, as a way to bind them up and get them out of the body. So mucus is not, on its face, a bad thing. In fact, it is saving our lives! For example, when you eat dairy, the lactose sugar is fermented to lactic acid, which is then bound to mucus. If not for the mucus, the acid could burn a hole in your cells, tissues, or organs. (If not for the dairy, there would not be a call for that mucus.) It is just that if the diet continues to be excessively acidic, too much mucus is created and the mucus/acid mixture gets sticky and congestive, causing poor digestion, cold hands, cold feet, lightheadedness, nasal congestion, lung congestion (as in asthma), and continual throat clearing.
At baseline, we must replenish the probiotics that inhabit our digestive tracts. With proper diet, a normal population will return on its own. You can help move the process along with probiotic supplements.
These supplements have been so highly touted in some corners you might think they are a magic-bullet cure-all. But they won’t work all on their own. You cannot just throw cultures at the intestines without making the appropriate nutritional changes to maintain proper pH balance, or they’ll just pass right through with little effect at all. Or, they could turn on you. You must prepare the environment as well as possible before you take probiotic supplements.
Besides improving your overall health and helping you lose weight, following this program will clean your intestines and restore your probiotics as well as balance your pH and control the growth of microforms. All of which, you can see by now, intertwine. As the pH of the blood and tissue normalizes, and the intestines are cleansed, nutrient assimilation and waste elimination will too, and you’ll be on your way to complete, radiant healthiness.
If mucus causes respiratory problems … check this page for help
Mucus Clearing Diet
Excerpt from “North American Diet”
Not all mucus is bad
Healthy mucus is a clear, slippery, lubricating secretion, used to protect mucus membranes along the digestive, respiratory, urinary and reproductive tracts. Unhealthy mucus is cloudy, thick, and sticky.
Mucus is secreted to stop irritants, pollutants, or carcinogenic compounds, created by putrefying, undigested food residues. It’s like a blanket of protection. Certain foods such as milk and bread cause an increase of mucus secretions. These foods have large protein molecules (casein and gluten) which are difficult to digest and are more prone to putrefaction, and may be toxic or an irritant to the body. For many, bread and milk cause sinus congestion.
Mucoid is a mixture of large gelatinous particles, which has a sticky or jelly-like consistency. The word mucoid encompasses the terms mucin, colloid, mucoproteins and glycoproteins. Mucoid is caused by many toxins, pollutants, food additives and allergies. Mucoid can be present in any body tissue but is most commonly associated with the respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, lymphatic system, uterus, vagina urinary system and the joints.
Cartilage in a joint contains mucus membrane cells which secrete a clear slippery mucus to keep joints lubricated. When mucoid-forming substances are present, toxic mucoid builds up deposits within the joint.
Mucoid within the body tissues, drains into the lymph which filters waste from the intercellular fluid. The blood absorbs 90% of this cellular waste fluid and the lymph absorbs the other 10..