Symptoms include pain, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, IBS, gas, acid reflux.

Causes are varied, but the most obvious cause is eating a food to which you are intolerant, or which contains substances that are difficult to break down. The most common digestive problems are gluten, grains (due to gluten or other substances in them), and dairy (often due to its casein or lactose), but any food can cause problems if you are sensitive – even foods which would usually be regarded as healthy, such as fruit and vegetables.

Causes of Pain

Often the cause of digestive problems, if less obvious, but inflammation is usually the significant underlying factor. This can interfere with the production of digestive enzymes, which means that foods don’t get broken down properly, and therefore either remain in the gut, causing pain, bloating and constipation, or pass through too quickly causing diarrhea. Another significant problem caused by low digestive enzymes is that nutrients do not get fully extracted from the foods, which can lead to other health problems, and ultimately further inflammation.

If stomach acid is too low, this will also reduce the breakdown of foods. Furthermore, it can lead to bacterial overgrowth in the digestive tract, as one of the important functions of stomach acid is to kill off pathogens.

The Small Intestine

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, along with candida and yeast activity is a very common cause of pain, bloating and IBS symptoms, A healthy gut microbiome is necessary for maintaining optimal health, but gut dysbiosis occurs when harmful organisms outnumber the healthy bacteria. Poor motility in the large intestine, causing constipation, can exacerbate the increase in pathogens. An inflamed small intestine or bowel provides a hospitable environment for unhealthy bacteria, yeasts and parasites, and they will flourish if there are insufficient numbers and types of healthy flora. Inflammation can cause damage to the intestinal lining, which can lead to increased sensitivities to foods, and poor nutrient absorption, especially of vitamin B12. Unfortunately this is becoming a very common problem, due to the increase in inflammatory diets and stressful lifestyles.

Candid and Yeast

Candida and yeast infections are becoming particularly common, mainly due to high sugar diets, which feeds the organisms, and frequent antibiotic use, which as well as getting rid of the bad bacteria, also wipe out the good bacteria needed to keep pathogens under control. If the problem spreads from the digestive system, via the bloodstream, it can lead to other systems becoming affected, and many skin problems are due to yeast infections.


The liver is vital for processing and eliminating toxins, and constipation can result when it is sluggish. Poor liver function causes many imbalances, as toxic substances and excess hormones will return to the bloodstream. Symptoms after eating fatty foods can indicate issues in the gallbladder, as this organ produces bile, which is necessary for the breakdown of fats.

It is necessary for all the organs of the digestive tract, including the microbiome, to work in harmony. Indeed it is becoming increasingly well known that the gut is the starting point of many disorders, affecting a wide variety of physical and emotional symptoms, and that a healthy gut microbiome is vital for a healthy immune system.

Free Advice

If you would like to learn more about a specific symptom or complaint why not book a free 15 minute face-to-face consultation with Meg Robertson (free this month only, March 2017). However you can contact her free, anytime on email, click here. Meg has a special interest in bowel symptoms and is a highly qualified therapist, with internationally recognised  qualifications. She is a qualified NAET® practitioner and registered Homeopath as well as a respected Nutritional Advisor.  Call the Living Centre Clinic today to discover how NAET® testing can help you create a better life for yourself., 02089462331.

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