Talking about bodily functions is either taboo for some people or often the center of conversation for others.

The topic of digestive health is a source of intrigue and frustration for individuals dealing with issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), where symptoms include constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, discomfort, and intolerances to certain foods and chemicals.

Clearly, problems with the GI tract are inconvenient and painful. As a result, quality of life may be severely compromised.

Drugs may help manage symptoms, yet side effects from prescriptions add to the distress. Removing part of the intestines and colon may be necessary in severe cases. Holistic practices that further mental relation, such as deep breathing, yoga, and acupuncture, are beneficial. Certain patients are motivated to find and correct the underlying causes of gastrointestinal dysfunction. Unfortunately, the medical paradigm falls short in this quest.

IBS is not a single disease with a single cause. It is a complex collection of symptoms for which there is no simple solution. Depending on the person, the condition frequently mimics an autoimmune syndrome in which the body’s defense system mistakenly attacks its own tissues. Addressing this multifaceted condition requires an integrative approach.

The process of functional medicine detective work allows Dr. Caroline to look beyond the surface.

With specific lab testing, we increase the likelihood of determining whether the condition is related to a leaky gut, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, parasites, food allergies, stress, toxins, or yeast overgrowth, for example.

We can then create a custom plan of action to support the body’s natural healing process with nutrition, supplementation, chiropractic, stress management techniques, and neurofeedback. When we honor both mind and body, it is more likely homeostasis can be regained.

Signs and symptoms often associated with GI disorders:
  • Feeling bowels do not empty completely
  • Lower abdominal pain relieved by passing stool or gas
  • Alternating constipation and diarrhea
  • Coated tongue or “fuzzy” debris on tongue
  • Passing large amounts of foul-smelling gas
  • Unpredictable or increasingly frequent food reactions
  • Aches, pains and swelling throughout the body
  • Frequent bloating after meals
  • Offensive breath
  • Stomach pain or aching 1-4 hours after eating
  • Heart burn when lying down or bending forward
  • Intolerance to spicy foods, chocolate, citrus, peppers, caffeine, alcohol
  • Roughage or fiber causes constipation
  • High fat foods cause distress
  • Oily, mucous-like, poorly formed stool
  • Dry or flaky skin/hair
  • Yellowish cast to eyes
  • Excessively foul-smelling sweat
  • Acne or patchy reddened skin
Recommended Reading