IBS… it’s literally a pain to manage. ..
You can’t function well at work or socially,
You’re always on the lookout for the next loo or can’t leave the house because you’re still on it.
Abdominal pain, gas, diarrhoea and constipation, generally feeling ‘half done’, more to come but when and how?
There’s no question irritable bowel syndrome is inconvenient, embarrassing, uncomfortable. You feel unsupported, tired and unable to make sense of it!
But don’t panic, there is hope…
In nutritional therapy and functional medicine, IBS represents a loss of function.
Normal stools are 3 or 4 on the Bristol stool chart, 2-3 times daily at predictable times of the day, not at night, not much smell to them, easy to pass, no wind or gas, 2 or 3 wipes and you’re done.
Life becomes easy again.
As a diploma trained nutritional therapist, I’ll look for the root cause through functional testing of stools, blood and/or urine sent to reputable labs, to establish certainty around devising therapeutic protocols targeted to you the individual.
I look for food intolerances, leaky gut, presence of pathogenic microbes, absence of symbiotic microbes, inflammation and factors contributing to it, lack of nutrients and I’ll help remove the fear around food and what to eat, discuss your lifestyle and many other contributing factors.
I work together with you to create a written programme that suits you and your lifestyle that includes how to choose food in your favourite shops that suits your body-machine, delicious recipes to back up what’s on your plan, handouts to explain the ‘why’, easy-one-step-at-a-time lifestyle changes.
With regular reviews at intervals that suit you and the programme you’re on, I can check how you’re getting on and support you to reclaim your daily routine and get on with your life socially and at work.
Why is a properly functioning gut so important?
A properly functioning digestive tract or gut, for short, is fundamental to good health contributing to lengthening not just your life span but also more importantly your health span.
What is the point in reaching 90 if your health has given up? Most disease begins in the gut often with inflammation, something we work hard to reduce, although not all inflammation is bad.
An optimally functioning gut sends nutrients in the blood stream to body organs and systems like the brain, heart, liver to repair, replenish with daily nutrient requirements for fuel and refurbish.
Would you consider it good for your car to leave out all the regular servicing or run it on the wrong fuel?
Have you ever been unfortunate enough to put diesel in a petrol car?? Our bodies represent soft engineering.
Given the right nutrients the body does its own service; in other words it has the ability to heal itself and one of the fundamentals of this is a properly functioning gut
Factors that affect the gut are nearly always to do with diet and lifestyle. Professor Brian Lipton in his book The Biology of Belief quotes his research around cell biology and his findings that cells are affected by their environment which means not only their chemical ‘wash’ or in other words the food we eat, but also sound, light, radio waves.
Cells within us change their behaviour according to their environment. Cells that don’t work properly, mean tissues that don’t work properly, means tissues within the organs they form don’t work properly.
So starting with the gut isn’t a bad idea since every cell’s environment is affected by what is processed in the alimentary canal or digestive tract.
What can go wrong with the gut?
It can become leaky and permeable when in fact it needs to be a sealed unit with carefully controlled exit points, whether out via the anus or ureter as waste or out into the blood stream as properly broken down nutrients to rebuild the body through repair or replacement of used up components.
The diverticula may become inflamed, sore, swollen; the vilae or finger-like projections that increase the area of absorption in the small intestine may become stunted or sheered off reducing our ability to absorb nutrients.
These can repair given the right inputs in your diet and removing the ones that are causing the damage. These nutrients improve our strength and resilience
The micro-biome may not thrive if the intestinal wall is damaged and it may become imbalanced towards disease-causing organisms. Some of these bacteria and fungi have the ability to migrate to other organs typically those that can cause pneumonia in those with compromised immunity.
Immune system strength starts in the gut and lack of resilience goes hand in hand with reduced energy, inability to sleep, more tiredness, illness, then anxiety and depression can follow
What is the micro-biome?
The micro-biome is the 10 trillion cells of microbes in the gut that we play host to. It weighs 2 kilo or 4 pounds and is the equivalent of another organ, in fact doing as much for us as our liver. It manufactures vitamins and minerals, protects that barrier membrane, gives us resilience to disease, manufactures energy, controls our appetite, mood and sleep
The gut and fertility
If you’re planning pregnancy it’s a good idea to ensure your micro-biome is playing host to the right party-goers! Gate-crashers in a pregnant mother’s micro-biome can be passed to their unborn child. Giving your child the best start means you as a mother investing in improving your micro-biome
What affects the health of the gut?
The health of the gut is affected by the following: poor diet; food intolerances; stress; poor eating habits; sugar and altered pH; lack of fibre; medications and drugs; smoking; poor diversity of the micro-biome; lack of exercise; late-night eating; illness; aging; pathogenic microbes; lack of sleep; allergies; infections; inflammation; damage to the micro-biome