Resolving Your Gut and Digestive Issues

In this fast-paced world, many of us don’t realise the strain our bodies are under which can often lead to gut and digestive problems, skin issues such as Acne, frequent headaches, fatigue and other symptoms brought on by stress, inadequate nutrition, heavy metal toxicity, bacterial overgrowth and even parasites.

Inna Topiler, a clinical nutritionist and founder of Complete Nutrition and Wellness in New Jersey, who has experienced rather a few digestive issues herself, recently shared some of her wisdom at the IBS & SIBO SOS Summit.

Naturopathy and Your Gut

Our bodies are a system and the system is intricately connected, so when something goes down, it effectively causes a domino effect. Getting to the root cause of your gut issue is where Naturopathy really shines, as it treats the whole person and rebalances the system instead of just treating the individual symptoms.  

When it comes to SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), IBS, parasites and other infections, our immune system is our first line of defence, so having an immune system that is either overactive and attacking its own cells, or one that is underactive, is usually at the core of where many infections stem from and which later develop into serious problems.

Main Causes of Gut and Digestive Issues  

Eating the wrong foods, coupled with antibiotics overuse, is most often the number one cause of most gut issues and SIBO. Antibiotics especially, do rather a lot of damage on the microbiota in the gut, so it’s thus essential that antibiotics are only ever used when absolutely necessary. And, something as simple as changing your diet can actually sort out a whole host of other issues because it targets many of the underlying causes of gut disturbances.

Stress negatively affects our immune system which is what protects us from bacteria and infection. Practising deep breathing, going for a walk, doing something that you enjoy, and even meditation are all ways in which we can help reduce our body’s fight-or-flight response to stress. 

Our mindset, level of happiness, thoughts and beliefs, including cultural beliefs, can also affect our immune system in either a positive or negative way. Something to work on!

Bacteria, parasites such as Candida and yeast infections wreak havoc on our system.

Low pancreatic enzymes or a sluggish gallbladder should also not be ruled out as other possible causes.

Treatment for Gut Problems

Often IBS, SIBO, Candida and sometimes a combination of these, are present in many people who experience gut and other digestive issues. 

When it comes to parasites such as Candida, some people may present with more symptoms than others. Candida is fed by carbs and sugar and antibiotics. When Candida flares up, it destroys the good bacteria in the gut, which then allows it to grow out of control. Tests for Candida usually include a stool and urine test. However, because Candida can be elusive a DNA test is often the best diagnostic tool as it is not affected by environmental conditions. 

Treatment of Candida is mostly handled through a change in diet, where the foods consumed are ones that don’t feed the Candida. Lean proteins, vegetables and good fats are all part of a gut-friendly diet. For people with IBS and SIBO, if they can tolerate some, beans should always be pressure cooked to remove the ‘gas’, something which someone with a gut issue really doesn’t need any more of.  

After a week or two, the addition of prescribed herbal supplements such as garlic and oregano to a streamlined diet where fruit, processed sugar and grains have been eliminated, can effectively compensate for cutting out carbs altogether because our bodies often need carbs for energy. For people who follow their new diets with enthusiasm, a lot of progress can be achieved in as little as six to eight weeks.

It’s important to note that Candida and such parasites can quickly become resistant to some herbs so rotating treatments every 2 to 3 weeks is necessary to counteract this. After finishing up with a Candida protocol, taking a formula that is glutamine-based will create a beneficial type of mucus to help heal the intestine lining. 

Activated charcoal is often prescribed for gut problems as it assists by absorbing any toxins.

Probiotics are another helpful additive to a gut-friendly routine but should only be taken at least 2 to 3 hours after any antibiotic or herbal supplement as probiotics can potentially be destroyed. Probiotics work best taken at bedtime to allow them the opportunity to do their job without interference. 

Probiotics containing prebiotics should be avoided by people with SIBO. A DNA test can give a better insight into which Probiotics will work best for your symptoms.

Prokinetic agents are great for people with a SIBO diagnosis as they enhance gut motility by increasing the frequency and strength of contractions without disrupting their rhythm. The quicker Prokinetics are used after a gut treatment protocol, the better.

Our bodies really do know how to heal and it’s something you should learn to trust as well as finding a practitioner who makes you feel comfortable and who is really going to listen to you and help you feel healthy again.

Talk to Dr Alain Sanua today. As a Doctor of Naturopathy and Homeopathy, Dr Sanua will find a holistic solution to treating the causes of your gut and digestive issues and restore balance to your system.


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