Bile flow, bacteria, and chronic inflammation
Of all the factors I’ve discussed on this blog, one of the most important variables involved in gut health is something called the enterohepatic circulation. The enterohepatic circulation more or less functions as a detoxification loop between the gut and liver. As toxins enter your gut, some are detoxified by cells of the gut wall while some cross in to the portal vein and make their way to the liver for further processing. They are then incorporated in to bile, stored in the gallbladder, and excreted back in to the gut where they can be sent out of the body. For further reading on this, check out this blog.
The enterohepatic circulation is important for a couple of reasons. As you can probably guess from the above, it’s critically important for proper detoxification. A second function is that it helps you absorb fat and fat soluble nutrients. A final and less covered function of the enterohepatic circulation is that it helps set the microbiome.