Changing the diet to heal the gut
One of the first tools that I utilize in assessing digestive health issues is the use of food sensitivity testing. The typical food culprits are dairy and gluten, but not to be ignored is the role of yeast-containing foods. Various berries, dried fruits, pickled and fermented foods, alcoholic beverages, soy products, baked goods and others often present as immune irritating foods. The patterns are becoming more evident and has only drawn my attention closer to the importance of healthy gut flora, healing the intestinal lining and providing the appropriate fuel for the gut.
Patients do not usually make the connection between the food they eat and how they feel. They may make some connection between food and digestive upset - but typically only if it is a fast-acting reaction. An uncomfortable washroom experience after a meal may help make the connection but often the results are not as pronounced or occur days later. In this case, the patient cannot easily connect their symptoms to food, let alone digestive health.
Every patient's symptom can benefit from dietary change and healing the gut. Whether it is reducing inflammation, stabilizing blood sugar and/or the immune system - dietary change equals healing. Healing the gut results in reducing the patients symptoms. The end result is the patient is happy because they feel better.
Recently a patient with a multitude of symptoms started using MSPrebiotic. Her plan included other items for digestive health yet she knew that the prebiotic was the missing ingredient. Other practitioners utilized similar protocols with her and had limited results. This addition stood out for her - she reported healthier bowel movements, less bloating, less cravings, more sustained energy throughout the day and improved mood. She is on her fourth purchase of the product and is encouraging her friends to try it out.
The healing process is sometimes not pretty but the outcome can be. Being patient, diligent and willing to adapt prove to be characteristics of a patient who heals. Gut healing really can test a patient's (and doctor's) resolve. A strict regime in the beginning means faster results and a happier patient.
Dr. Jason Granzotto, BSc (Hons), ND, graduated from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine in 2007. He has a keen interest in digestive health issues and in educating the public. He practices at The Center for Health and Rehabilitation in Vaughan, helping patients from across the Greater Toronto Area.