Go With Your Gut

Go With Your Gut

Chiropractic Watertown WI Go With Your Gut

The Gut, otherwise known as the digestive system, is made up of organs, hormones, and other organisms that break down the food we eat and convert it into energy and nutrients our body needs to function. I believe this is the second most important system following the nervous system, because it provides nutrients so the rest of the body can function. Some disorders that are commonly thought of with the digestive system are heartburn or acid reflux, gastritis, Crohn's disease, Ulcerative Colitis, constipation and diarrhea. It is easy to understand that these diagnoses directly relate to the digestive system. But what about health issues related to the gut that show up elsewhere in the body?

For instance, eating Dairy can increase mucus production and show up as sinus drainage or a constant cough. Joint pain can be caused by inflammation in the gut and can be helped by making adjustments to your diet. And of course how your gut works and what you eat affects your weight and energy level throughout the day. Very importantly, what you eat affects the immune system and your ability to fight off disease.

Residing in your digestive tract is a diverse array of bacteria and fungi, referred to as your gut microbiome, that are essential to your health and well-being. In fact, 80% of your immune system resides in your gut. When the different types of bacteria and fungi are balanced, the gut and body feel pretty good. But when it becomes imbalanced by what you eat, stress (physical or emotional), or medications, it can create havoc. If you are getting sick often, you should look into the health of your gut.

One of the most known fungi making up the gut biome is Candida. It is good and necessary when in balance. However, an overgrowth of candida can cause digestive issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and weight loss resistance. Most frequently, we hear about it when it takes over and causes a “yeast infection”. Sugar along with yeast fermented beverages (such as wine and beer) feeds Candida causing inflammation. By decreasing sugar in the diet, including sugar from fruit, you can start to balance your candida.

Another healthy ingredient in balancing the microbiome is fiber. Fiber has many benefits in the digestive system. It helps bulk up stools and keeps it moving through the bowels. This helps prevent constipation. If you struggle with slow motility in the bowels or constipation and are taking fiber, try increasing your water intake. Fiber and water work together to move stool through our bowels. By keeping the stool moving, it is harder for our guts to absorb sugar from our foods. (That is why High Fiber diets are extremely beneficial to people with diabetes.)

There are two different types of fiber; soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber attracts water and turns to gel during digestion. This slows down digestion which helps you feel full sooner and reduces bloating and gas. Soluble fiber is found in oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, peas, and some fruits and vegetables. It is also found in psyllium, a common fiber supplement. Some types of soluble fiber may also help lower risk of heart disease.

Insoluble fiber adds bulk to the stool and appears to help food pass more quickly through the stomach and intestines. That is important because it helps our body process waste better and improved bowel health. It can be found in foods such as wheat bran, vegetables, and whole grain foods. High amounts of fiber in the diet can also help with weight loss since it fills you up quickly and keeps you full for longer periods of time. There are so many benefits to eating a high fiber diet, yet this is the number one nutrient lacking in the American diet. Wondering if you have a healthy microbiome? Don’t guess, test! We sell a microbiome test at our office that shows you specifically your levels of good and bad bacteria and fungi in the gut. By knowing what your current microbiome levels are, you can make dietary and supplemental changes to help improve your overall health.

Yours in Health,
- Dr. Stephanie Tyjeski

Dr. Stephanie graduated in December 2016 with her Doctorate in Chiropractic at Logan University. She continued on at Logan University to receive her Masters in Nutrition and Human Performance. She is also certified as a Digestive Health Professional through the Loomis Enzyme Institute. She currently works at Tyjeski Family Chiropractic and Wellness Center.

At our Wellness Class, we will cover the full digestive system including specific digestive disorders such as IBS, leaky gut, acid reflux, and more. Bring your questions and get ready to learn! Please join us at our Beaver Dam location for this FREE class on Tuesday, June 20th at 5:30pm to learn more about the microbiome test and how your digestive system may be causing other issues in the body.