Gut related Health Conditions- Digestive Health

Good health starts in the gut.

Hippocrates was quoted as saying ‘all disease begins in the gut’ and over 2000 years later we are beginning to appreciate his point of view.[1]

The digestive system is made up of the gastrointestinal tract—also called the GI tract or digestive tract—and the liver, pancreas, and gallbladder.

Bacteria in the GI tract, also called gut flora or microbiome, help with digestion.

Working together, nerves, hormones, bacteria, blood, and the organs of your digestive system digest the foods and liquids you eat or drink each day.[2]

Throughout this digestion process, we absorb the nutrients that we need for our body to function.

Digestion

Many health conditions are related to or caused by poor digestion.

Herbal medicine and healthy nutrition can help and assist in promoting better digestion health.

The healing process includes learning what is a healthy eating plan that suitable for you, incorporating lifestyle changes, eliminating dietary indiscretions and chemical abuse and as well as reducing stress.

Natural medicine offers remedies for different pathological syndromes as well as tonics that help to prevent a problem from manifesting in the first place.

We are what we digest and absorb.

If the digestion process is not working effectively, then you might experience health problems – even if you are eating healthy food.

Poor digestion can cause symptoms such as blemish on your skin, low energy and low immunity, and can be linked to many diseases, including osteoporosis[3], arthritis[4] and bowel cancer[5].

Good digestion depends on several factors including chewing, levels of digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid, and proper functioning of the liver, gallbladder, pancreas and intestines.

What can influence digestion?

  • Age – as we age, stomach acid production tends to reduce.
  • Stress – under stress, the body goes into the ‘fight or flight’ response and increases blood flow to the brain to help us cope.
    This reaction reduces blood flow to our gut and lowers digestive secretions, which can have an impact on our digestive function.
  • Lack of nutrients.
  • Lack of fibre from whole grains, fruit and vegetables.
  • Lack of water.
  • Lack of exercise.
  • Lack of beneficial gut bacteria.
  • Parasites, yeast and pathogenic bacteria.
  • Food intolerances – common allergens like wheat and dairy can irritate the bowel.
  • What we eat, when we eat and the size of the meal.
  • Food combinations.
  • The gut health.
  • Our general health and wellbeing.
  • The enjoyment of the meal.
  • Certain medications.

In the clinic, we can help you to identify triggers and causes specific to you, so you can get to the root of your everyday digestive issues.

We will advise a tailored naturopathic plan that includes botanical remedies, nutrition and lifestyle advice so that you get maximum support for your digestive health goals.


[1] van den Elsen, L. W., Poyntz, H. C., Weyrich, L. S., Young, W., & Forbes-Blom, E. E. (2017). Embracing the gut microbiota: the new frontier for inflammatory and infectious diseases. Clinical & translational immunology, 6(1), e125. https://doi.org/10.1038/cti.2016.91 

[3] Katz, S., & Weinerman, S. (2010). Osteoporosis and gastrointestinal disease. Gastroenterology & hepatology, 6(8), 506–517.

[4] Horta-Baas, G., Romero-Figueroa, M., Montiel-Jarquín, A. J., Pizano-Zárate, M. L., García-Mena, J., & Ramírez-Durán, N. (2017). Intestinal Dysbiosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Link between Gut Microbiota and the Pathogenesis of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Journal of immunology research, 2017, 4835189. https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/4835189 

[5] Song, M., Garrett, W. S., & Chan, A. T. (2015). Nutrients, foods, and colorectal cancer prevention. Gastroenterology, 148(6), 1244–60.e16. https://doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2014.12.035

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