A happy belly is a healthy belly.  Over the last few years, the onslaught of information about the gut and the microbiome has dominated research. It is somewhat amusing, since the concept of digestive health is not new to older systems of medicine. Gut health dictates every other aspect of your health. Some researchers refer your gut as your “second brain.”

Symptoms of poor digestive health can include:

  • Reflux
  • Constipation
  • IBS
  • Bloating
  • Flatulence
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Bad Breath
  • Body Odor

These symptoms are just a few signs of “leaky gut,” better known today as malabsorption or increased intestinal permeability. For us, these are the early indicators of inflammation in progress, a microbiome unbalanced and an immune system soon to be out of control.  If you have any of the symptoms listed above, you may have a leaky gut or malabsorption—and are not absorbing nutrients from your food.

Leaky Gut Quiz

Take this quick test to determine if you may have leaky gut. For each question, answer “yes” or “no.”

  1. Do you have pain after eating?
  2. Do you have irregular bowel movements?
  3. Do you have unexplained rashes?
  4. Do you have joint pain?
  5. Do you have chronic yeast infections?
  6. Have you been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease?
  7. Are you chronically fatigued?

If you answered “yes” to more than three questions, you may indeed be dealing with leaky gut. It is worth learning more about your belly and digestive health.

Healing Leaky Gut

If you think you are dealing with leaky gut, there are a few things you can do to start repairing your gut.

  1. Re-evaluate your diet to take out gut-damaging foods. These include wheat and grain, sugars, conventional dairy and low-quality/conventional meats.
  2. Consider your medication. NSAIDS and antibiotics can be damaging to the gut. Of course, check with your provider before removing, if these have been prescribed for you.
  3. Heal with foods! Nutrition is one of the best ways to start to heal your gut (and your overall health). Introduce fermented foods, like kimchi or sauerkraut (not made with sugar), coconut kefir. Try an anti-inflammatory diet. Also, go for grass-fed beef and wild-caught salmon, which is high in Omega-3. Bone Broth is great for the belly as it’s amino acids, collagen and glycine can heal the cell walls.
  4. Take your probiotics. Rebuilding the healthy gut bacteria is essential to repairing the gut wall.
  5. Other supplements that can help are digestive enzymes to help make sure all food is digested, and l-glutamine, an amino acid that helps repair the gut lining. (The Belly Fix Bundle includes a probiotic, digestive enzyme and L-glutamine.)

A badly damaged gut may require a more intensive approach. In the practice, we offer more detailed testing for leaky gut and malabsorption. Meet with one of our providers to help you determine if this testing is right for you. We also offer The 21-Day Belly Fix program, which homes in on healing the gut to improve overall health!

Remember, a happy belly gets you closer to HEALTHY.

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