Brisbane Livewell Clinic offers Naturopathic help for gut health issues. Your gut, or digestive tract, is made up of organs including your stomach, liver, gall bladder, small intestine and large intestine. When functioning at its peak, your gut digests absorbs and processes the nutrients from the food you eat, so they can be absorbed and used easily by the body [1-3].
Healthy digestion relies on acids and enzymes secreted by your liver, pancreas and small intestine to break food down into vitamins, minerals and nutrients so they can be absorbed by your body. Alongside these acids and enzymes, your body also relies on balanced gut flora to help with absorption while also assisting with the breakdown of waste products so they can be removed from the body without pain or discomfort .
What to do when gut health isn’t optional?
When gut health isn’t optional, your body will send you signals of disorder such as pain or discomfort. You may experience bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, reflux, cramping and spasming, heartburn and reflux, nausea and vomiting, or other symptoms. These symptoms may or may not relate to the food you eat and may reflect dysfunction or dis-ease in one or more organs in the digestive tract [1-3].
Gut health is also vital for a healthy functioning nervous, reproductive, and immune systems. This means that symptoms relating to cognition, memory, hormone imbalances, immune disturbances, and inflammatory states such as arthritis or eczema, may have a gut health component [1-2].
Without a healthy gut, you are also not able to adequately absorb nutrients from the foods you eat – meaning that even if you have a healthy diet, you may not be receiving all the benefits of eating healthy food and may experience vitamin, mineral and nutrient deficiencies .
How can a Naturopath for Gut Health help?
Naturopathic medicine works by encouraging the health and vitality of your body as a whole . A qualified naturopath will work with you to review your state of health and the variety of symptoms you are experiencing that may be preventing you from experiencing vitality. A naturopath will also work to treat you as an individual, meaning that any disease-state or illness you experience will be taken into account in order to understand what it is your body specifically needs in order to encourage balance.
What to expect during your naturopathic consult
During your naturopathic consult, your practitioner will work with you to understand how you feel so as to get to the cause of your concern. When it comes to understanding the impact of your food and lifestyle on your gut health, food intolerance testing may be ordered. If assessment of your gut dysfunction and flora is indicated, your naturopath may order a stool test or parasitology in order to ascertain whether any micro-organisms are playing a role in your discomfort or illness. Your naturopath will also take a thorough personal and dietary history, in order to work with you to understand any foods that may be triggering gut or related symptoms.
What happens following your consult
During your consult, your naturopath will work with you to understand your health aims and will prescribe a course of care personalised to your individual health needs. This plan may include dietary changes, taking a herbal tonic individually prescribed and mixed by your naturopath, lifestyle changes, and/or a course of natural supplements.
Your naturopath will formulate a care plan working in with your own dietary, lifestyle, and health aims.
 Hechtman. Clinical Naturopathic Medicine. 1st ed. Chatswood, NSW: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier; 2012.
Sarris & Wardle. Clinical Naturopathy: An evidence-based guide to practice 2e. Australia: Churchill Livingstone, 2014.
 Feather, Randall & Waterhouse. Kumar & Clark’s Clinical Medicine 9e. 2016. Elsevier.