COLORADO SPRINGS — How is your gut health, and if it were unhealthy would you know it? The first thing to know is that your gut includes much more than your stomach.
Dr. Sue Mitchell, MD with Gastroenterology Associates of Colorado Springs, is the founder of GUTWELL Medical. Dr. Mitchell explains, “When we talk about the gut, it’s everything from your mouth through your esophagus, your small intestine, and all the way through your colon. There are microbiomes in our gut all the way from the mouth through the colon and the rectum.”
Dr. Mitchell says some of the symptoms that would indicate that your gut health needs some attention would be things like, “Irritable bowel syndrome, gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth where you have an overgrowth of bacteria living in small intestines that we don't want to be there.”
Oftentimes, gastrointestinal issues are simply embarrassing, uncomfortable, and difficult to live with, but Dr. Mitchell says it’s critical to know when they are signs of something more serious. “Obviously GI medicine we always want to make sure we're not missing something that is serious or life-threatening such as cancer or an autoimmune condition like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.”
Treatment of common GI issues is nothing new, but Dr. Mitchell says there is a new focus on a functional approach to understanding and promoting a healthy gut. “In traditional medicine, we have very much focused on dietary interventions and we have used pharmaceuticals and prescriptions to manage disease in patients' symptoms. In some cases, these prescriptions are very much life-saving. But we now know with newer technology, that by understanding what's really going on in your microbiome, we don't necessarily have to give prescriptions in order to heal patients.”
Gastroenterology Associates of Colorado Springs is a proud sponsor of Your Healthy Family