GUT HEALTH AND THE NUMBER 1 FUNCTIONAL TEST I USE IN CLINIC.
In my practice, I am regularly faced with clients who are troubled by digestive problems. Many of you come to me complaining about the fact you are not able to eat many staple foods and some of you avoid entire food groups and even self prescribed supplements in a determined effort to alleviate symptoms. Despite your best efforts, you may continue to suffer gut problems and ongoing health issues and this is normally the trigger to work with me.
Every of you has an unique health blueprint and in the field of functional medicine which I adhere to, there is no one size fits all solution. This is why, I look at your nutritional, lifestyle, psychological and medical history to gain a wider and more holistic understanding of what you need to do to achieve your health goals.
Often, I feel laboratory testing can help me discover exactly what is right for you. It can help to avoid guesswork and limit unnecessarily restrictive diets. You deserve results so testing can be the missing link to uncover the root cause of your gut problems.
A Comprehensive Stool Analysis helps us to get a snapshot of your digestive function. If you are suffering with gas, bloating, pain, constipation or diarrhoea, this test is very relevant and no doubt you will hear me in consultation talking about it. It may also be useful to assess non-gastrointestinal (GI) problems such as skin issues (think eczema, dermatitis, acne), mood disturbances (depression, anxiety), insomnia, brain fog, joint pains, sinus complaints, allergies, intolerances and more.
As Alessio Fasano said “the gut is not like Vegas, what happens in the gut does not stay in the gut”, it has indeed repercussions in the body systemically.
Those who work with me know I like to see the status of your beneficial bacteria, imbalanced commensal bacteria, pathogenic bacteria, parasites and yeasts. I am also able to judge the efficiency of your digestion and absorption by looking at the markers in the stool test: faecal elastase, fat, carbohydrate, muscle and vegetable fibres whilst the biomarkers of calprotectin, lysozyme, lactoferrin, white blood cells and mucous can be used to assess inflammation. This can help me to differentiate inflammation associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s) from most common and less chronic irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The immune status of the gut is measured by secretory IgA (sIgA) while the assessment of short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) reflects overall gut health and microbiome balance. I am starting to get a bit technical here but I want you to see clearly the scientific approach of this test and how I rely on it to help YOU.
If you are reading this and feel it might be the missing link, book an appointment with me, get in contact.