6R Framework
Digestive Health

Digestive health is crucial, as it influences nearly every system in our body, including the immune system, metabolism, cardiovascular system, mental health, and skin health. In functional wellness, the 6R Framework is a comprehensive strategy used to support and enhance gut health through six key phases:

1. Remove the Instigators

2. Replace missing factors

3. Re-inoculate with good bacteria

4. Repair the gut lining

5. Rebalance the microbiome with a healthy lifestyle

6.Regulate for lifelong success

By following the 6R Framework, individuals can take comprehensive steps to support and maintain optimal gut health, which is foundational to overall well-being and the effective functioning of various bodily systems. Health is rooted in digestive wellness.

Adapted from the Functional Nutrition Alliance 6 R Protocol
Remove    |     Replace     |     Re-inoculate     |      Repair    |      Rebalance    |      Regulate
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Remove
The Instigators
 
 
 The first step involves eliminating substances and factors that negatively impact digestion, motility, elimination, and the microbiome. Common allergens and irritants such as processed sugars, caffeine, alcohol, gluten, and dairy are removed. Additionally, environmental stressors like unfiltered water, chemicals in household and personal care products also need to be considered for removal to lessen their burden on the digestive system.


Replace
The Missing Factors
 
 
While eliminating offending substances, it's crucial to introduce elements that support digestive health. This includes foods rich in fiber, nutrients, and water. Supplemental support such as digestive enzymes or hydrochloric acid may be introduced to aid the proper breakdown and absorption of nutrients, ensuring the digestive system functions optimally.

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Re-inoculate
with good bacteria
 
 
This phase focuses on enhancing the microbial flora in the colon by introducing probiotic and prebiotic foods and supplements. These help increase the number and diversity of beneficial bacteria, which aid in breaking down food, fermenting nutrients, and producing vital neurochemicals. Foods rich in polyphenols, fermented items, and resistant starch are key to this phase, as they help feed and support the growth of good bacteria.

Repair
The Gut Lining
 
Chronic gut issues and sensitivities can lead to increased gut permeability, often referred to as "leaky gut." This step aims to repair the gut lining by introducing antioxidant-rich foods and supplements that promote the healing of the digestive tract, tighten cellular junctions, and reduce inflammation, thereby preventing unwanted substances from entering the bloodstream.


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Rebalance
The Microbiome
 
Addressing and optimizing lifestyle factors is essential in this phase. Key areas such as sleep quality, physical activity, stress management, and nurturing healthy social connections are examined to ensure they support, rather than disrupt, digestive health.


Regulate
Lifelong gut health
 
 
To maintain long-term gut health, continual assessment and adaptation are necessary. This involves tracking changes in food intake, mood, and bowel movements to understand what benefits or hinders your gut health. This ongoing process helps establish a dynamic, lifelong relationship with your digestive system, allowing for adjustments as needed based on your body's responses and environmental changes.


Remove    |     Replace     |     Re-inoculate     |      Repair    |      Rebalance    |      Regulate


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