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Gut Health impacts various aspects of our overall health, including digestion, immune and brain function, metabolic health, and well-being.


When out of balance, it can make it difficult to effectively absorb nutrients and minerals, which can contribute to fatigue, inflammation and overall not feeling like your best self. 

What is the gut microbiome?

The gut microbiome refers to the vast and diverse community of microorganisms that inhabit the gastrointestinal tract. It consists of trillions of microorganisms, including bacteria, viruses, fungi and other microbes, that live in a symbiotic relationship with the human body. 


What are the functions of the gut?

  1. Digestion and nutrient absorption: the gut is responsible for breaking down food, absorbing nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids and eliminating waste products

  2. Immune function: the gut helps regulate immune responses, protecting the body from harmful pathogens and reducing the risk of developing autoimmune diseases and allergies

  3. Brain-Gut connection: the gut and the brain are interconnected through a complex network of nerves and chemical signals, known as the gut-brain axis. The gut microbiota can influence brain function and behavior by producing neurotransmitters, regulating inflammation, and influencing the production of hormones that affect mood and stress response.

  4. Metabolic health: Emerging research suggests that gut health may play a role in metabolic health, including weight regulation, blood sugar control, and lipid metabolism. An imbalanced gut microbiota has been associated with conditions such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.

  5. Overall well-being: the gut is often referred to as the "second brain" due to its extensive nervous system and its role in regulating mood, stress, and emotional responses. A healthy gut is associated with improved mental health, better sleep, and overall well-being.


What are symptoms of a gut imbalance?

  • Chronic constipation

  • Chronic diarrhea

  • Abdominal discomfort

  • Bloating

  • Excessive gas

  • Acid reflux/GERD

  • Hormone imblances

  • Mood swings

  • Sugar cravings

  • Acne or persisting skin concerns

How is gut health tested?


In combination with a detailed history and physical exam, we offer at home stool testing through Genova Diagnostics to assess gut function and microbial composition. Stool analysis can provide information on the composition of the gut microbiome, including types and abundance of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other microbes. They can also check for the presence of inflammation, food sensitivities, dysbiosis or maldigestion. 


What can be done to optimize gut health?


You can take care of your gut through a healthy diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep, stress management, and appropriate use of medications and supplements. At VHealth & Wellness, we provide individualized plans on diet changes and vitamins or herbal supplements that can treat and promote your gut health, reduce inflammation and treat any imbalances which may be contributing to ongoing symptoms or illness.

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