I seem to be on a digestive kick guys. What is the ileocecal valve? Like hiatal hernia problems, this little guy goes relatively unrecognized. His importance plays a big factor in our health. Most people haven’t heard of the ileocecal valve before. So what is it?
ILEOCECAL VALVE: This “valve” is a small, golf ball sized part of our lower digestive anatomy. It connects our small intestines to our large intestines. The point of this valve? To keep the sewage from the large intestines separate from the stuff happening in the small intestines. With unhealthy lifestyle choices this valve can get stuck open or closed. This is a problem folks. What do you get? You can have sewage flowing into the area you are supposed to be absorbing your food. You can also have waste not properly able to flow out. Let’s look at a few reasons the valve gets stuck and what we can do to fix it.
CAUSES: The culprits always seem to be the same don’t they. These are a little different, yet still similar. Processed foods are among the worst. Gluten, pasteurized dairy, improperly prepared grains and cereals, sugar, etc. Roughage can also irritate this valve. Too much raw salads, raw carrots, or under-ripe fruit can cause this valve to spasm a bit as well. EXERCISE, or lack thereof is a huge issue as well. Our systems are all PUMPS. They are designed to be PUMPED! Digestive system, detox system, circulatory system, lymph, etc. Most of these systems have their own pumps. But they are designed to have help. Exercise stimulates digestion big time. Mixing it up is always a good idea. Bicycling may be especially good for this problem. Stress is a big one too. When we are stressed, we don’t digest our food properly. What does this lead to? A “back-up” in our bodies. Traffic jams. This is no good. We want to be relaxed and well rested when we eat. Ultimately, removing the sources of your stress is a big help with almost all problems in the body. So what can we do about this issue? There are a few simple steps.
SOLUTIONS: The first solution is to remove the causes. Clean up the diet. Eliminate the roughage foods for a little bit. Focus on soft stuff. Try eliminating gluten, most grains, hard veggies, and irritating spices like hot peppers, etc. Going off these things for a few weeks can help calm this valve down. Exercising more regularly, deep breathing, sleeping more, and getting rid of stress all will do wonders. As with the hiatal hernia, sometimes our parts like a little help to regain proper functioning. There are several techniques that you can do on yourself that help get this little guy back up and running. There is another valve on the other side called the “Houston’s valve.” The principle is the same. Let’s look at how to find these valves and I will post a short video on massaging these spots.
LOCATION: The best way to locate your ileocecal valve is to imagine a line connecting your belly button to the front of your hipbone. Find the midpoint of that line with your fingers. Next, go down an inch or two until you find a small, tender spot. This is likely your ileocecal valve. Most people have soreness or tenderness in this area. The same is true of the Houston Valve. So let’s look at a quick clip on how to fix this up. Keeping your digestive system and all of its parts happy and healthy is a great defense against all types of ailments. Let’s get the system back up and running on all 8 =)