The ileocecal valve is a sphincter muscle located at the intersection of the small intestines and large intestines. Positioned near the appendix, the ileocecal valve functions to open and close the passageway between the intestines to facilitate the movement of food through the digestive tract. When the ileocecal valve is closed, food remains in the small intestines allowing the body to render and absorb nutrients. Periodically, though, one of several factors may cause dysfunction of the ileocecal valve causing it to remain open or remain closed, which results in an imbalance in the digestive system and rest of the body.
Depending on the actual ileocecal valve issue, different symptoms are presented. Nonetheless, several common issues include joint pain, circulation problems, muscle aches and pains, pinches nerves and whole body arthritis. Additionally, ileocecal valve issues may cause a sudden stabbing pain in the low back or leg, a standing curvature, sharp or dull headaches, migraines, chronic sinus infection, allergies, dark circles under the eyes. Loose bowels, colon syndromes, burning leg pain, asthma-like symptoms and general GI discomfort may also be caused by ileocecal valve dysfunction.
Several factors influence the function of the ileocecal valve. Eating certain foods, not getting enough nutrients, having an improper nerve supply and even misalignment of the joints contribute to dysfunction of the ileocecal valve. Additionally, the way food is chewed, the texture and quality of food consumed, emotional stress and travel may affect the ileocecal valve.
Diet is one of the best remedies for treating ileocecal valve issues. Avoiding bread and other dense foods prevents sticking of the ileocecal valve. Likewise, avoiding caffeinated, spicy and sugary foods maintains effective functioning of the valve. Supplements including vitamin B12 and vitamin C support the functioning of the digestive system and bile acid absorption. AFA blue green algae also helps digestion and effective functioning of the digestive tract. Some of our readers also report having the area massaged in order to get food moving again is most effective.