Digestion and Immune Function

The intestinal micro flora or bacteria is balanced and needs to remain so for proper intestinal function, digestion and immune function. An imbalance of the bacteria in the gut is called DYSBIOSIS and can lead to a host of symptoms and problems. Symptoms associated with DYSBIOSIS include nausea, belching, bloating, heartburn, abdominal pain, cramping and abdominal distension, depression, anxiety and altered bowel function (constipation and/or diarrhea). Extra-intestinal symptoms associated with DYSBIOSIS include joint pain, anxiety, cognitive deficit, fatigue, fever and skin rashes to name a few.

The causes of DYSBIOSIS include antacid abuse, poor nutrition, stress, alcohol, drugs including antibiotics and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents such as Motrin, decreased digestive enzymes, decreased hydrochloric acid, food allergies, travel and yeast infections. Dysbiosis results in a loss of good bacteria with decreased vitamin production, loss of detoxification and overgrowth with harmful bacterial species.

Dysbiosis can lead to leaky gut syndrome in which there is damage to the lining of the bowel resulting in increased permeability. Toxins then can enter the blood stream and cause inflammation and immune dysfunction. A host of conditions from acne to alcoholism,aging, yeast infections, celiac disease and eczema can result.

It is important to diagnose DYSBIOSIS before it gets to leaky gut and all of its problems. EVERYONE should take probiotics before each meal and eat foods rich in fiber and flavonoids. B vitamins and antioxidants are also helpful as are omega 3 fish oils. Be healthy by eating healthy and mindfully!

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