The Rise of Gut Health Awareness

the importance of gut health
 

The Rise in Gut Health Awareness

By Lauren Windas (Registered Nutritionist & Naturopath, mBANT, CNHC)

Co-founder of ARDERE.com

Have you heard of the phrase ‘always trust your gut’?

As we live in such a fast-paced culture, it’s becoming more and more common for people to lose their connection with their bodies and our bodily functions.

Taking about digestive issues is such a taboo and yet many of us suffers from problems related to gut health, despite many of us shying away from these discussions. We seldom realise that the optimal function of our digestive system holds the key to our health and happiness.

A big part of the population suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome

1 in 5 of us suffer with IBS (also known as Irritable Bowel Syndrome), which can wreak havoc on our day-to-day lives.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic disorder characterised by symptoms including abdominal pain or discomfort, intestinal bloating, gas and changes in bowel habit (1). IBS is a very common condition with symptoms varying from person-to-person and fluctuating on a daily basis (2).

There is no single recognised cause of IBS. However, there are multiple factors that play a role in the syndrome. The foods that we eat, how stressed we are, and also the environment within our gut can all be driving factors of IBS symptoms (3).

That’s why we are breaking the stigma and opening up about all things related to gut health.

Fun facts about your gut:

  • 70% of your immune system resides in your gut (this is known as our Gut Associated Lymphoid Tissue, aka ‘GALT’)

  • 90% of serotonin (our body’s mood-boosting chemical) is found in our gut

  • IBS is twice as common in women as it is in men

  • Our gut houses approximately 500 million nerve cells (4), which is known as the enteric nervous system

  • We are actually made up of more bacteria than human cells!

Many of the symptoms we experience today can originate from gut imbalances

Our gut is really incredible in supporting our health in so many ways, yet many of us don’t even realise it. The symptoms we experience in our gut can be a signal to listen to our bodies and take appropriate steps with our diet and lifestyle in order to regain balance.

That’s why it’s so important to educate ourselves on all the essential ‘gut-health nuggets’ of information. Simply speaking with a healthcare practitioner can be enormously helpful in trying to uncover the root of your symptoms. It’s a great step in the right direction if you are looking to find answers and improve your overall digestion.

Whilst gut health is fast-becoming the new buzz-word in the wellness community, it’s so important to continue talking openly about digestive health and raise awareness about the digestive issues that so many of us face day-to-day.

Comment below if you want to see more on the topic of gut health!

If you would like to contact Lauren Windas for a consultation, please get in touch here.



 

(1) Ballantyne, S. (2013). The Paleo Approach: Reverse Autoimmune Disease and Heal Your Body. Las Vegas: Victory Belt Publishing.

(2) Barbara, G. Cremon, C. Carini, G. et al. (2011). ‘The Immune System in Irritable Bowel Syndrome’, Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility, 17 (4), pp. 349-359 NCBI [Online]. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3228974/pdf/jnm-17-349.pdf (Accessed: 7 December 2018).

(3) Furness, J.B and Poole, D.P. (2012). ‘Nonruminant Nutrition Symposium: Involvement of Gut Neural and Endocrine Systems in Pathological Disorders of the Digestive Tract’, Journal of Animal Science, 90 (4), pp. 1203-1212, NCBI [Online]. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22178854(Accessed: 7 December 2018).

(4) Lembo, A.J. Lacy, B.E., Zuckerman, M.J. (2016). ‘Eluxadoline for Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Diarrhea’, The New England Journal of Medicine, 374 (3), pp. 242-253 New England Journal of Medicine [Online]. Available at: http://www.nejm.org/doi/pdf/10.1056/NEJMoa1505180 (Accessed: 7 December 2018).