There are many different types of gut issues brought about by many different factors. In fact, a large percentage of the human population experiences one type of digestive problem or another. From celiac disease to GERD, the various gut problems can seriously affect the quality of life of an individual. In worst-case scenario, it can even lead to death, especially when it’s left unchecked.
Let’s take a look at the different types of gut issues and find out what we can do to treat them to achieve a healthy gut.
1. GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease)
Many of us have experienced acid reflux – stomach acid has made its way up the esophagus. Acid reflux can also be described as heartburn. Generally, it’s an unpleasant and painful feeling.
This condition is relatively common, and it does go away after some time, especially when we stop eating meals that trigger heartburn or when we take an anti-acid medication.
However, when the condition is chronic and happens frequently, such as every week or every two weeks, then it could already be GERD.
People who suffer from GERD will often show symptoms, such as pain in the chest area, bad breath, and eroded teeth. The experience can be painful and can affect the quality of life of the individual.
So how do you treat GERD? The first and most effective way is to check your diet. Also, you can buy over the counter medication that’ll reduce acid production in the stomach. Keep in mind that the best course of action is to first seek medical attention.
2. Celiac Disease
Many people have celiac disease and may not even know about it. It occurs in individuals who are sensitive to gluten-a protein found in wheat.
When such people consume wheat, their body’s defensive mechanism goes on the attack and starts causing harm to the villi of the intestines. These are small fingerlike protrusions that absorb the food we eat. As a result, they cannot function properly. The individual may experience weight loss, seizures, anemia, depression, diarrhea, vomiting, or constipation.
Celiac disease may cause a leaky gut. What is a leaky gut? It refers to the damage of the lining of the small intestines, causing food particles as well as bacteria to get into the bloodstream.
How can someone who’s allergic to gluten avoid celiac disease? The first and most effective method is to avoid eating wheat products in the first place. Secondly, you’ll need to seek immediate medical attention.
3. Gall Stones
Another gut issue that’s quite common is gall stones. These are hard stone-like products that occur in the gall bladder. Gall stones occur due to high cholesterol in the blood. If the gall bladder is not able to efficiently empty itself, the hard structures will occur.
These “stones” can block the ducts that lead to the intestines, resulting in sharp pain in the upper right side of the torso region. When it reaches this stage, the most effective way to treat it is surgery.
We can prevent gall stones by eating a healthy cholesterol-free diet and doing physical exercises.
4. Crohn’s Disease
Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease, which can affect various parts of the gastrointestinal tract. However, it mostly affects the section that connects the small intestines to the large intestines called the terminal ileum.
Scientists aren’t fully aware of what causes Crohn’s disease. However, there’s speculation that genetics have a part to play.
Crohn’s disease occurs when the immune system goes on the attack and causes damage to the terminal ileum.
Some of the symptoms of the disease include sharp pain in the abdominal area, diarrhea, bloody stool, and even constipation.
Treatment will usually involve medication that suppresses the immune system as well as changing the diet. This often means avoiding dairy products, food rich in cholesterol, avoiding eating raw fruits and vegetables, and foods high in carbohydrates.
5. Ulcerative Colitis
Another form of inflammatory bowel disease is Ulcerative colitis. It’s quite similar to Crohn’s disease but the main difference is that it mostly affects the large intestines. Ulcerative colitis occurs when the body views certain types of food as invasive, triggering the immune system to go on the offensive.
Consequently, this damages the large intestines. Some of the symptoms that you may experience include pain in the lower abdomen, stool that has blood in it, fever, loss of weight, diarrhea, or constipation. If you experience any of these symptoms it’s imperative that you seek immediate medical attention.
Treatment will usually involve surgery into the large intestines. You may also get immune suppressants to stop the action of the immune system. You’ll also need to avoid certain foods that could trigger ulcerative colitis, such as dairy products, red meat, fatty meat, spicy foods, and processed foods that contain additives.
6. Irritable Bowel syndrome
If you’re frequently experiencing pain in the abdominal area for several months, then there’s a possibility that you could be suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This disease affects millions of people throughout the world.
One of the main causes of irritable bowel syndrome is the diet. Some of the symptoms include constipation, diarrhea, or bloating
To treat IBS, you’ll need to avoid foods, such as dairy products, caffeine, and foods that contain artificial sweeteners or additives. You may also need to get rid of foods that have high levels of carbohydrates.
Another way that you could help treat IBS is to consume yoghurt since it contains high levels of friendly gut bacteria that can help stabilize the condition in your gut.
Also, keep in mind that stress can be a cause for IBS. Due to this reason, some patients may get anti-depressants from the doctor as well as cognitive-behavioral therapy.
There are many different types and causes of gastrointestinal issues, some of which may be genetic, traced down to allergy to certain types of foods, and the diet. The best way to deal with gut issues is to regulate your diet and seek immediate medical attention.