Natural ways to balance and restore your digestive system
Sponsored by Steelsmith Natural Health Center
Many people experience digestive problems that impact their health and wellness. At Steelsmith Natural Health Center, its naturopathic physicians focus on functional medicine and look closely at how well the digestive system is working. Rather than prescribing drugs to simply suppress symptoms, they prescribe natural medicines, dietary and lifestyle changes, acupuncture, and supportive nutrients to help balance and restore a patient’s digestive system.
When it comes to addressing a digestive complaint, the goal is to shift the microbiome and restore function of the digestive system. Patients often complain of heart burn, bloating, gas, or changes in bowel habits like constipation and diarrhea. Some patients come in with a diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
At Steelsmith Natural Health Center, their job is to look for the underlying cause of a patient’s symptoms. Naturopathic doctors ask questions such as: Does the patient have enough stomach acid and enzymes? What is their diet like? Are they intolerant or reactive to the foods that they are eating? Do they have trouble digesting fats? How well do they eliminate? How many times have they been on antibiotics in the last year, two years, or three years? They also look at stress levels since it can profoundly impact the digestive system through the enteric nervous system.
Based on a patient’s responses, doctors order specific functional medicine tests. These include breath testing for bacterial byproducts from the small intestines and stool testing to assess for yeast, bacteria, parasites, and digestive enzymes.
Doctors prescribe medicines that help restore health so that a patient doesn’t have to stay on prescription medicines that simply take away symptoms, but don’t treat the underlying cause of the condition. If a patient has low stomach acid as a cause of their gas and bloating, doctors give botanical medicines, supplements, and acupuncture to help restore digestive function. If they have small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, botanicals are prescribed to shift the intestinal flora away from unfriendly flora towards friendly flora.
If a person has food reactivity or allergy, then doctors work with the patient and devise a diet that will allow them to refrain from the foods that create imbalance and inflammation in their body. Doctors at Steelsmith Natural Health Center also work with a patient’s lifestyle to aid them in changing what may be the underlying cause of their condition: stress.