What’s your gut feeling?
Poor gut health can be identified from bloating, abdominal discomfort, constipation, flatulence, diarrhoea, nausea, heartburn and acid reflux. Many clients are diagnosed with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), but remain confused as to how to manage the condition?
Irritable bowel syndrome
IBS affects up to 25% of the population at any one time and there are many contributing factors at play including:
- ‘Bad’ bacterial overgrowth in the bowel
- Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)
- Immune problems; 70% of our immune system is located in the gut
- Nervous tension
- ‘Leaky gut’ and food sensitivities
Investigating the cause
A poor digestive tract can affect the absorption of nutrients therefore, optimising digestive health status remains a key focus of any nutritional programme. Addressing possible triggers, supporting function and choosing foods that soothe, calm and repair, are all important steps. Diagnostic testing can provide key information regarding contributory factors.
How to improve digestion
- Chew food thoroughly – chewing begins the digestive process
- Relax – digestive problems may become worse when stressed
- Regular meals – Four hours between each meal plus a twelve hour overnight fast allowing the digestive tract to regenirate
- Keep hydrated – drink eight glasses of water per day
- Limit caffinated drinks to up to three cups per day
- Reduce intake of alcohol and fizzy drinks
Promote freindly bacteria by eating vegetables, whole foods and fermented foods including live yoghurt, kefir and sauerkraut.