Bloating, excessive gas, diarrhea, constipation, stomach pain, acne, rashes, depression are all symptoms of a gut-health condition that it is gradually gaining more prominence: SIBO.
SIBO stands for ‘Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth’ and it describes a condition of having an abnormally large amount of bacteria in our small intestine.
You might be thinking, ‘wait, I thought we were supposed to have tons of gut bugs inside us’. This is absolutely true and these bugs are called our microbiome.
The problem is when these gut bugs take up residence the wrong part of our gut. The vast majority of them belong deep down in our large intestine, not high up in the small intestine, as happens with SIBO.
How does this overgrowth happen?
Our gut can get out of balance for many reasons, including
- taking antibiotics
- eating a diet full of processed food
- juggling tons of different commitments and responsibilities in a busy life full of stress
When this happens, the normal happy state of mutual cooperation with our gut bugs – know as symbiosis – falls apart and is replaced by ‘dysbiosis’.
The result is that we feel ill, not just in our digestive system but all over our body. Leaky gut goes hand in hand with dysbiosis and it opens the door to even more health problems.
For some people SIBO also goes hand in hand with dysbiosis and they find themselves experiencing highly unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, stomach pain, skin issues and depression.
How do I know if I have SIBO?
There are tests available although there isn’t yet a universally accepted one, and results can be unclear.
It is often difficult to nail down an exact diagnosis for our gut problems. For example, there is a lot of similarity between SIBO and IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) symptoms.
Having said that, I believe that IBS is a somewhat meaningless catch-all diagnosis for any problem that stems from dysbiosis. At the root of all these problems lies un unhappy microbiome.
This means that we don’t need to get hung up on finding a precise label for our gut ailment.
If you haven’t yet received an official medical diagnosis for your symptoms or if you have doubts about whether the diagnosis is correct, don’t let that stop you from taking action today to start getting better!
Once we make improvements to our diet and lifestyle, helped along by taking a few carefully chosen supplements, our body responds well and these ailments steadily improve.
Our microbiome responds positively to diet more than any other single factor and this unlocks our body’s ability to heal itself, but doctors don’t currently receive any nutritional training in med school.
In our coaching program we don’t provide you with a diagnosis. This is because our coaches are highly trained nutritional therapists rather than medical doctors.
Armed with their training and experience, our coaches have helped hundreds of people like you to get rid of their gut issues (and related problems) completely.
What’s the treatment?
A common treatment for SIBO is antibiotics but here at GG we don’t favour this approach. Overuse of antibiotics is the single biggest single thing that has got most people into this mess.
Unless the underlying cause of the SIBO is addressed and fixed, the unfriendly bacteria will come back just as heavily in a few weeks or months, and possibly build resistance to the antibiotic.
Also every time we take a typical course of antibiotics we can lose up to a third of our microbiome. This means that we also lose the vital protection against nasty microbes and illness that our friendly gut bugs normally provide us with.
Here at Gut Geek we recommend a combination of:
- A clean diet: reducing the amount of processed food in our diet, particularly processed carbohydrates such as white bread and pastries that feed unhelpful bacteria inside us.
- This also includes cutting right back on sugar, switching from unhealthy processed fats to cold-pressed fats in their natural state, and eating organic as much as possible.
- Probiotics: taking a good quality, multi-strain probiotic consistently for at least three to six months. This will help to rebalance the bacteria throughout the digestive system.
- Natural antibiotics such as oregano oil and allicin (from garlic).
- Lifestyle: we need to reduce alcohol and stress, which might sound like Mission Impossible, but once you notice how much better you’re feeling, anything becomes possible!