Are you listening to your intuition? | Chennai News – Times of India

From anxiety, depression, eye disease and oral health to arthritis and possibly even covid-19, it could all involve the health of your gut, doctors say. This is the heartbreaking truth and if it gives you butterflies in your stomach, well, that’s one of the signs of trouble.
For a long time, S Srinath thought that the loud burping he made after a heavy meal was just a sign that he was enjoying his meal. He only started to worry when he realized he was burping even though he hadn’t eaten. “Then one day I developed a terrible burning pain in my chest and rushed to the hospital,” says the 26-year-old engineer, who was diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a a condition caused by the rise of stomach acid into the esophagus. “What I thought was a heart attack was actually heartburn, triggered by years of irregular meal times, lack of exercise and smoking.”
Shiny Chandran, a Chennai-based nutritionist, says ‘gut’ issues make up 80% of his clientele, regardless of age group – for people in their 20s and 40s, gut issues are due to study pressures or from work-life balance, for women in their late 40s, it could be triggered by menopause. “Common gut problems include GERD, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), leaky gut, ulcers and constipation,” says Shiny.
The gut, which is primarily the gastrointestinal system, is populated with hundreds of millions of microbes that play an important role in digestion, as well as boosting immunity. So much so that the gut flora or microbiome is referred to as an “organ” because it plays many key roles in metabolic health. “If there is a disturbance in the balance of the intestinal microbiome, this can make the body more vulnerable to disease,” explains the gastroenterologist. Dr Prashanth Krishna.
And when the intestine is in trouble, it cries out for help through other parts of the body. “The intestinal microbiota stimulates the immune system. So if you have gut issues, it’s likely to manifest as other health issues as well,” he adds. “As for example with covid, the body’s immunity is affected, and more than 70% of it is controlled by the gut. During the second wave of Covid, one of the first signs of Covid-19 was gastrointestinal symptoms like diarrhoea.
It’s not without reason that the gut is called the second brain, Shiny explains. “Like the brain, the gut is full of nerves called the enteric nervous system. It has neurons and neurotransmitters like those found in the central nervous system. extends from the esophagus to the rectum.
The gut plays an important role in channeling hormones and enzymes, says Dr. Prashanth. “That’s why when someone is anxious, they feel like they have butterflies in their stomach. It’s because the enteric nervous system is firing on all cylinders. The gut, he adds, controls the body’s release and absorption of serotonin, which plays an important role in improving mood and aiding sleep, digestion, and bone and brain health. the mouth.
The mouth mirrors several bowel-related issues, says Dr. Gunaseelan Rajan, medical director of the Rajan Dental Institute. “Mouth ulcers are indicative of gastric ulcers and both have similar treatments. Acid reflux can erode enamel, produce extreme tooth sensitivity, and even some kind of muscle soreness in the face. All of this is made worse by low pH foods like pickles and citrus fruits. He adds that at least one patient a day presents with what appears to be an oral health problem, but is actually a bowel problem.
“Although neglected for a long time, now that it is known to influence the development of diseases ranging from metabolic and gastrointestinal to cancer, medical research is following the gut more closely,” he says. In fact, a recent Nielsen survey of digestive health products found that more than 73% of consumers in India consider gut health important, while another report by market intelligence firm Straits Research indicates that the market for digestive health products is expected to reach $79.2 billion. by 2030 at a CAGR of 8%.
“Gut health research opens Pandora’s box in terms of direct and indirect effects on the body,” says Dr. Prahanth.
To improve gut health
~ Include probiotics (fermented vegetables, curd) and prebiotics (onion, garlic, banana, whole grains) in the diet; reduce sugar and artificial sweeteners; avoid smoking and alcohol; ensure sleep hygiene and regular physical activity
Signs of poor gut health
~ Loss of appetite; irregular bowel activity (diarrhea/constipation); fatigue; sudden weight gain/loss; Food intolerance
Try that
~ First morning drink: lukewarm water with a pinch of cinnamon powder and turmeric powder with a dash of lime or virgin coconut oil, plain or mixed with turmeric and turmeric powder pepper
~ Last drink before bed: chamomile tea/ water/ golden milk (clear milk with a pinch of turmeric and pepper)

How Poor Gut Health Affects You
Headache
Reflux, diarrhea or constipation can manifest as headaches or migraines. Some studies suggest it could also be the other way around – people who have frequent headaches may be predisposed to digestive problems. Treating the gastrointestinal problem can help reduce the severity of migraines.
The Depression
Most serotonin, which helps induce sleep, is produced in the gut. Poor gut health can affect serotonin levels, leading to depression, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and sleep disorders such as insomnia and chronic fatigue.
Oral health
When the gut leaks, it results in undigested material moving freely through the body and reaching the mouth, leading to tooth decay, bad breath, and even a dull ache in the face.
eye disease
Some gut microbes can release eye-damaging proteins.
Back ache
Inflammation of the intestine can lead to back pain. So, if you suffer from abdominal pain and bloating, you may experience back pain.
Arthritis
An unhealthy gastrointestinal tract can disrupt the immune system, leading to common types of inflammatory arthritis, including gout and rheumatoid arthritis.
Parkinson’s disease
Some studies show that Parkinson’s disease is associated with alterations in the gut flora, inhibiting its ability to break down fat, making it more difficult to regulate bile acid production (changes in bile acids are associated with Parkinson’s disease).
The Covid-19 connection
A 2021 study in the British Medical Journal suggests gut flora can influence the severity of Covid-19 and the immune system’s response to infection.


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