Skip to main content

Gut Health

It’s estimated that between 60 and 70 million Americans experience gastrointestinal problems regularly.

If you’re one of them, it’s important to take steps to improve your gut health. Doing so can improve your quality of life and reduce the risk of complications. At Inspire Health Clinics, Heather Hardy, FNP, works with people of all ages to encourage optimal gut health. To make an appointment at the practice in South Jordan, Utah, call the office today or schedule a consult now.

What is Gut Health?

Gut health refers to the well-being of your gastrointestinal or digestive system. Over the years, dozens of scientific studies have confirmed a link between the gut and mental health, the immune system, endocrine disorders, and even certain types of cancer. It’s thought that by keeping your gut healthy, you can significantly reduce the risk of health problems.

At Inspire Health Clinics, Heather believes in keeping the gut microbiome healthy. Your gut microbiome is home to between 300-500 types of bacteria.

These microorganisms play a crucial role in keeping you physically and mentally healthy.

What are some factors that affect gut health?

There are a variety of factors that can negatively affect your gut health, including:

  • Eating a low-fiber diet
  • Living a sedentary lifestyle
  • Overusing anti-diarrheal medications
  • Tanking antacids frequently
  • Stress
  • Eating lots of dairy

You’re also more likely to experience gut issues if you are pregnant.

What are the symptoms of poor gut health?

Symptoms of poor gut health include:

  • Bloating and constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Excess gas
  • Change in bowel habits
  • Pain or bleeding during bowel movements
  • Stomach cramps
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

If your symptoms are severe, you might also experience extreme weight loss or dehydration.

How are problems with gut health diagnosed?

To diagnose problems with gut health, Heather reviews your medical history, asks about your symptoms, and conducts a physical exam. If these steps aren’t enough to determine the source of your discomfort, she might recommend a procedure like an endoscopy or a colonoscopy.

Endoscopy uses a thin tube with a camera and bright light on the end to assess the health of your esophagus and upper digestive tract. Colonoscopy uses a similar tool to examine your large intestine (colon) for polyps or other abnormalities.

How can I improve my gut health?

There are several things you can do to improve your gut health. Depending on the source of your symptoms, Heather might recommend eating a more balanced diet, better managing your stress levels, drinking more water, and getting plenty of exercise.

You might also benefit from taking a probiotic or prebiotic. These nutritional supplements promote the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut, enhancing your gut microbiome.

If you want to improve your gut health, make an appointment at Inspire Health Clinics by calling the office today or clicking the online booking feature.