Chapter IV -The Healing Properties of Whey
A GENTLE BUT EFFECTIVE INTESTINAL LAXATIVE
With the lactic acid present in whey, along with the lactic acid produced by the lactose it contains, whey stimulates intestinal peristalsis. The intestines must evacuate feces in order to avoid becoming poisoned by their own wastes. The matter in the intestines makes its way through them thanks to the contractions of the circular muscles of the intestinal walls.
As these contract in successive waves (peristaltic movement), they tighten the available space and push the wastes forward in the direction of the exit out of the body. The muscles responsible for intestinal peristalsis can be stimulated in two ways. There is the mechanical way: food fiber (wheat bran, oat bran, cellulose contained in fruits and vegetables) fills the intestine, thus reflexively triggering the peristaltic process.
Then there is the chemical way, activated by the presence of specific stimulating substances (the active substances of various medicinal plants or, in the case that concerns us specifically, the lactic acid of whey). Rather than having a purgative effect, whey is a quite gentle laxative. It is effective in the case of intestinal sluggishness as well as for both occasional and chronic constipation. It has even sometimes provided excellent results in cases where the intestines have been exhausted by the overuse of purges and harsh chemical laxatives
REGENERATING THE INTESTINAL FLORA
The lactose content of whey inhibits the presence of bacteria that causes putrefaction and encourages the functions performed by the beneficial bacteria. By helping the intestinal flora regenerate, whey has a beneficial effect on the digestive process. When intestinal flora is partially destroyed or imbalanced, the transformation of foods is poorly achieved, which can cause a number of chronic digestive disorders. Taking whey regularly can cure these problems and restore normal digestive function.
The stools reacquire their normal consistency (neither too hard as is the case with constipation, nor too soft as occurs with diarrhea) and lose their foul odor. Flatulence and bloating also disappear. Lactose is the nourishment of choice for the beneficial bacteria of the intestinal floras, because it allows them to reproduce and multiply much more easily. Because many adults have difficulty digesting milk, whey, which is easily digested, is an ideal source of this lactose. It is therefore particularly useful to consume whey at times when the microorganisms of the intestinal flora have been destroyed, for example when antibiotics have been taken.
STIMULATING AND DETOXIFYING THE LIVER
Whey has an indirect effect on the liver; it works on it by way of the intestines. The liver is quite dependent on the condition of the intestines, because substances are transported from the intestine to the liver by the portal vein. The liver’s role is to store the nutrients or release them into the bloodstream; it is also to neutralize, purify, and eliminate toxic substances.
Although the liver has a high neutralizing and detoxifying capacity, a daily intake of toxins from the intestines can exhaust and exceed its abilities over time. This is exactly what happens when the intestines do not eliminate their wastes on a regular basis (constipation) or when putrefaction occurs ceaselessly because an imbalance in the intestinal flora is producing large quantities of poison (indoles and skatoles): two disorders for which whey provides an excellent remedy! When the liver becomes exhausted, it can no longer neutralize all the toxins that come its way.
These toxins will gradually poison the entire system (see more on this in Correcting the Body’s Internal Cellular Environment). Further, the exhausted liver can no longer secrete enough bile—a digestive juice that is necessary for the intestines to perform their digestive and eliminatory functions. As a result, there will be poor and incomplete digestion; putrefaction will increase, producing numerous poisons that irritate the intestinal walls and create microlesions. The intestinal mucous membranes, instead of acting as filters, will become porous and allow toxins to enter the bloodstream where they will make their way to the liver. There—and this quickly turns into a vicious circle—they will exhaust the liver.
ELIMINATING EXCESS WATER FROM THE
TISSUES Bodily tissues hold a certain amount of fluids that are retained there by, among other things, the presence of salt. Consequently, there is a physiologically beneficial salt content in the body. In certain pathological situations, however, this content can increase; this naturally results in an increase of the amount of fluid that is held. Edemas will appear, often in the legs (particularly around the ankles), the hands (making it difficult to remove rings), and the eyelids.
Because this additional water content has caused the tissues that make up the various organs to swell, numerous health problems can result, including high blood pressure, blood or lymphatic stasis, and organ congestion. Taking whey, which is rich in potassium, is quite useful in these situations because potassium is the natural enemy of salt and expels it from the body along with the water it has retained.
Whey does not create imbalance in the mineral composition of bodily fluids as chemical diuretics can. It expels only excess water the tissues are holding, and not the constituent fluid that is normally present. A large fluid elimination is one of the more visible and spectacular effects of the whey cure. The quantities of urine that are eliminated are clearly higher than the quantities of water ingested, especially when the individual has been retaining water.
STIMULATING TOXIN ELIMINATION BY THE
KIDNEYS The kidneys are one of the main organs for the elimination of wastes and metabolic residues. They filter wastes out of the blood and eliminate them in a diluted form as urine. The kidneys are constantly working to maintain the composition of the blood as close to its ideal state as possible.
The wastes eliminated by the kidneys include urea, uric acid, creatinine, salts, and expended minerals. For various reasons, however, this elimination can take place in an insufficient manner. Unable to exit the blood, the wastes collect in the body where they can cause various disorders. Gout, for example, is a disease caused by the presence of too much uric acid in the body, acid the kidneys should be eliminating. This disease is displayed by very painful crises of acute arthritis, generally located in the big toe.
Other diseases caused by poor renal elimination include rheumatism, osteoarthritis, and some forms of eczema. The kidneys themselves can also be afflicted when wastes collect in their filters. During a whey cure, the heightened levels of liquid traveling through the kidneys support the transport and elimination of toxins.
This cleans out the renal filter, thereby increasing the possibilities for waste evacuation, and allows the wastes carried to the kidneys by the blood to be much more easily and copiously eliminated. The end result is a general cleansing of the entire system. Blood analysis after whey cures confirms that the blood has rid itself of numerous wastes. This is also evident by the fact that the symptoms of diseases will diminish in intensity or disappear altogether.
Assimilation, by which is meant the cells’ potential to receive all the nutritive substances they need (proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, minerals, trace elements, and vitamins), is improved by whey in three different ways.
1. Minerals are transformed into a soluble state by lactic acid, making them easier to assimilate.
2. Whey encourages good digestion (by regenerating intestinal flora), which is essential for nutrients to be extracted from foods and made available for the intestinal mucous membranes to absorb.
3. The restoration of a healthy and clean intestinal environment prevents many of the nutrients that enter the intestines from being destroyed by the poisons caused by putrefaction.
CORRECTING THE BODY’S INTERNAL CELLULAR ENVIRONMENT
All the healing properties of whey discussed in this chapter can be summarized into one general property: whey provides corrective action to the internal cellular environment.
The term internal cellular environment is used to designate the physical environment in which all the organs of the body reside. Just as the quality of life for human beings depends on their environment (air quality, water quality, food quality, and so forth), the quality of life for our organs (and therefore our entire body) depends on their surroundings, the internal cellular environment. This consists of four bodily fluids: blood, lymph, the fluids that surround the cells (extracellular or interstitial fluid), and the fluids found inside the cells (intracellular fluid).
These four fluids alone account for 70 percent of total body weight. Our organs literally bathe in these fluids and are completely dependent upon them.
The fluids eliminate wastes from the organs and bring to them the nutritive substances they need. When the ideal composition of a bodily fluid is altered, the good working order and even the survival of the cells making up the organs are put in danger. For good health, it is imperative that the internal cellular environment maintain its unique properties.
The internal environment can deteriorate, making it easier for disease to appear, in two ways: it can become overloaded with toxins or it can be deficient in the nutritive substances it requires to function. The principal cause of excess toxins, besides overeating, is insufficient elimination of wastes by the emunctory or excretory organs (the organs responsible for the filtration and elimination of toxins).
There are five excretory organs: the liver, intestines, kidneys, skin, and lungs. The liver eliminates wastes through bile, the intestines through fecal matter, the kidneys by urine, the skin by sweat (through the sudoriferous glands) and by sebum (through the sebaceous glands), and the lungs with the air they exhale.
A deficiency in nutritive substances generally originates with intake: either the individual does not eat certain foods or the foods he or she eats do not provide these substances (either because they are naturally deficient or because the nutrients have been lost, as in refined foods). However, another common problem is the deficiency of utilization.
In this case, the nutritive substances are brought in by the individual’s diet, but they cannot be assimilated and utilized because they are not absorbed or they are destroyed by intestinal poisons. In naturopathic medicine, the deterioration of the internal cellular environment (caused by deficiencies or an accumulation of toxins) is considered to be the cause of all our health problems. Illnesses are the visible expression of deep-seated disorders and infections that are welcomed into the body by a deficient cellular environment.
For example, gout, which we discussed earlier, is not, despite appearances, a disease that is localized in the toes. Gout manifests when the internal cellular environment is overloaded with uric acid. Certainly, the symptoms appear in a particular place on the body (the big toe), but uric acid is saturating the entirety of the system. The same is true for all diseases: they are never in fact circumscribed to a restricted part of the body, but are the localized expression of a general deterioration of the internal cellular environment.
Therefore, a logical and effective therapy should aim not only to bring about the disappearance of the symptoms of illness, but also to remove its causes by correcting the state of the internal cellular environment.
This can be done by dislodging embedded toxins and correcting deficiencies. Thanks to its multiple healing properties, whey provides invaluable assistance in attaining this double objective. Whey acts on the three main excretory organs: the liver, the kidneys, and the intestines. It stimulates their eliminatory function, and thus the cleansing of the internal environment. Whey also helps to compensate for deficiencies by the valuable nutrients it contains.
In addition, whey encourages the assimilation of these substances by regenerating intestinal flora and aiding digestion. Over the long term, whey cures can therefore provide an effective contribution to the correction of the body’s internal cellular environment.