Digestive Health

11486691_sDigestive health is one of the most common concerns when people see a Naturopathic Doctor.  A shocking one in three people in North America suffer from gut problems of various sorts.

A well-functioning digestive system is the cornerstone of good health.  Our bodies need nutrients to perform our essential day-to-day functions.  For example, sugars are used for fuel by our muscle cells during our morning work-out, iron is used by blood cells to carry oxygen to our brain during that presentation and protein is used to heal and grow new skin onto that scabbed knee.  Most of our nutrients come from the food we eat.  So, indeed, we ARE “what we eat”.  However, we are also HOW we eat. Regardless of what we put into the body, our digestive process has the final say in whether we will breakdown and absorb all those vital nutrients we eat.

Generally speaking, ND’s approach digestive tract issues from a “functional” perspective – meaning situations where we have ruled out a structural issue and the bowel simply isn’t working properly.  We attempt to treat the root cause of conditions by looking at the entirety of the digestive system including organs, microbial balance, enzyme function, intestinal permeability and so much more.

Our digestive tract is so much more than a big tube where food is mechanically broken down and nutrients extracted.  The health of our gut determines which nutrients are absorbed and which toxins, allergens, and microbes are not.  As a result, it is directly linked to the health of our entire body.  So many health conditions can be caused by poor digestion because every single cell and system in the body can be affected when it is deprived of the nutrients needed for its proper function.

Some of the symptoms of poor digestion:

  • Gas / bloating
  • Indigestion
  • Heart Burn
  • Diarrhea / Constipation
  • Stomach discomfort / pain
  • Nausea
  • Acid reflux
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Inflammatory bowel disease

Naturopathic Treatment

The digestive system is complex, involving a number of organs (including the stomach, intestines, pancreas, and liver) and many processes to breakdown our food, move it along, and trigger absorption. A malfunction in any of these organs or processes can cause the impairment of the whole digestive system. Your Naturopathic Doctor will conduct in-depth analyses for signs of dysfunction and treat the individual problems at the cause to bring the digestive system back to optimal functioning.

Examples of Naturopathic Treatments:

  • Herbs to soothe and heal an inflamed stomach lining, which can cause ulcers
  • Amino acids to heal a damaged intestinal wall, which can cause poor absorption
  • Supplements to regulate stomach acid levels, which can treat heart burn
  • Probiotics using specific bacterial strains to balance the intestinal microbial flora, which can treat gas and bloating
  • Herbs to treat intestinal parasites, which can cause diarrhea
  • Homeopathy to treat the symptoms of food poisoning
  • We use all these treatments with a mind to address the root cause of how the system got out of balance to begin with and to truly heal, with the intention of fully restoring health and preventing a recurrence of symptoms

Markham Village Naturopathic Clinic
258 Main St N.
Markham ON L3P 1Y7
(905) 201-6497

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