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Does it strike you as odd to be reading about gut health on a chiropractic blog? It shouldn’t. We wrote recently about chiropractic nutrition, and today, we’re sharing what everyone should know about digestive and gastrointestinal health – and how it’s related to chiropractic care.

Meet Your Gut Flora

Gut flora, aka gut microbiota, is the colorful name for the trillions of good and bad bacteria living in your GI tract. These microbial cells can impact everything from your physiology and metabolism to your immune system function. Think about it – every day, we inadvertently introduce pathogens to our gut without becoming sick.

That’s because your gut flora protect against these invaders in a number of ways:

  • By improving the physical defenses of the gut wall
  • By competing with invading pathogens for things like space and food
  • By regulating inflammation
  • By producing antimicrobial substances

The function of this gut microbiome begins at birth, with breastfeeding launching early colonization efforts in a new baby’s gut. In fact, these microbes are some of first influencers on a baby’s immune system.

Factors like your age, nutrition habits, and any medications you may take can all impact the composition of your gut flora, and studies have shown that gut flora and the immune system are a two-way street. That means that improving gut flora or GI health boosts the immune system – and vice versa.

If you’ve ever noticed systems like these, you may benefit from a gut balance program.

  • Gas or indigestion after eating
  • Burning stomach sensations that eating can temporarily resolve
  • Stomach bloat
  • Occasional loose stools

4 Principles to Improving GI Health

  • Daily digestion supports digestive functionality by maintaining appropriate acid and enzyme levels that are critical for digestion and absorption.
  • Weeding encourages a healthy digestive environment.
  • Seeding supports healthy gut flora.
  • Feeding provides food for microorganisms in the GI tract.

Dr. McSweeney can explain these principles and offer recommendations for improving your GI health and immune system – exactly what we all need as we move into cold and flu season. Remember, your chiropractor is trained to address your body’s structural integrity and has a strong understanding of its relationship to bodily function. Chiropractic care is based on the idea that proper function of everything in your body in essential to overall health. That includes the GI tract, and that’s why chiropractic nutrition exists.