How is SIBO treated?

SIBO is treated by following a full regimen of natural gut restoration that will rebalance the bacteria levels in your small intestine. It typically involves a carefully planned diet as well as supplementary enzymes to support your recovery.

When will I receive my test results?

Generally, you’ll receive your test results – which include a full, detailed report – within two weeks.

How does SIBO testing work?

SIBO testing works by measuring either the amount of gas produced by the bacteria in your digestive system (with breath testing), or by looking for biomarkers in your blood that indicate the presence of SIBO (with blood testing).

What is SIBO?

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, or SIBO for short, happens when bacteria in your small intestine grow out of control, disrupting healthy digestive function and causing discomfort.

Will I have to change my lifestyle and/or diet?

Most likely yes, although in some cases it might just be temporary to rebalance your digestive health.

How can the digestive system cause so many health issues?

Your digestive system is one of the most important systems in your body, so it’s connected to just about everything. If it isn’t functioning the way it’s supposed to, then you could be short on nutrients, have a buildup of toxins, or other issues that affect parts of your body that seem like they have nothing to do with digestion.

How soon will I notice or feel a difference?

It depends on what’s being addressed. Generally, you might notice the severity of your symptoms lessen within just a few days. Significant, lasting changes like being symptom or medication-free can take weeks to months, but they’re absolutely worth the commitment.

What kinds of digestive issues can you help with?

Our testing and treatment program is for start-to-finish digestive health, so it addresses a range of conditions connected with the digestive system, including IBS, food sensitivities, food allergies, bacterial overgrowth, and dysbiosis.

How do you know if you have adrenal fatigue?

Testing for Adrenal Fatigue is done via urine or saliva. In either case, samples are collected at home, four different times over the course of one day. Often, other adrenal hormones such as progesterone and DHEA may be included. Both urine and salivary tests are equally sensitive when testing cortisol levels.

What is Adrenal Fatigue?

Adrenal Fatigue is a modern-day epidemic and results from the overstimulation of the adrenal glands due to chronic stress and over time, low cortisol levels. The most common report is feeling “burnt out”.

Adrenal fatigue is one of the most common health disorders, but it’s not recognized or screened for in conventional medicine – unless you have the extreme case of Addison’s or Cushing’s Disease – and these are uncommon. However, Adrenal Fatigue will impact up to 80% of us at some point our lives. Adrenal fatigue may occur after a major life-changing event such as divorce, surgery, childbirth, or even following a car accident.

The main purpose of your adrenals is to enable your body to deal with stress from every possible source, ranging from injury and disease to work and relationship problems. Adrenal function is of paramount importance because these small glands play a pivotal role in determining the way your body responds to every change in your internal and external environment. For example, the protective activity of anti-inflammatory adrenal hormones such as cortisol help to minimize reactions like swelling and inflammation in situations ranging from allergies to autoimmune disorders. These hormones closely involved in many metabolic processes:

  • Blood sugar regulation
  • Metabolism of carbohydrates and fats
  • Conversion of fats and proteins into energy
  • Distribution of stored fat  – focused around your waist (the spare tire); & sides of your face
  • Cardiovascular function
  • Gastrointestinal function

After mid-life (menopause in women, andropause in men), the adrenal glands gradually become the major source of the sex hormones circulating throughout the body in both men and women. These hormones themselves have a whole host of physical, emotional and psychological effects, from the level of your sex drive to the tendency to gain weight.

Adrenal fatigue causes a feeling of generalized “unwellness” which creates havoc on your life. In more serious cases, the activity of the adrenal glands is so diminished that you may have difficulty getting out of bed for more than a few hours per day. With each increment of reduction in adrenal function, every organ and system in your body is more profoundly affected. Metabolic changes occur in your carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, fluid and electrolyte balance, heart and cardiovascular system, and sex drive. Many other alterations take place at the biochemical and cellular levels in response to, and to compensate for, the decrease in adrenal hormones that occurs with adrenal fatigue.

What are Adrenal Glands?

The adrenal glands are tiny hats, one each, that sit atop your kidneys and secrete hormones to help you deal with and manage stress. The outer part of the glands, called  the cortex, releases cortisol, for our stress response and metabolism control, as well as aldosterone to regulate blood pressure. The inner part of the glands are the medulla where adrenaline is released, another part of the stress response.

When your central nervous system perceives stress, it stimulates the adrenal glands to release their hormones as a part of the “fight or flight” response. This can happen several times throughout the day and can vary depending on your lifestyle. For example, an alarm clock startling you out of sleep will trigger this response, as will less sudden stressors like feeling overwhelmed by your overflowing email at work or worrying about finances or family members. In the early stages of stress, this response is actually beneficial. It can improve mental clarity, focus and energy. But over time, the benefits start to fade, and the consequences of chronic stress take over.

What are natural treatments for insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome?

Insulin resistance can often be helped by addressing a few key areas of health such as diet, exercise and stress reduction techniques. A diet rich in low starch vegetables, little/no refined sugar, good protein and healthy fats is important to reduce your risk factors for developing insulin resistance. A Ketogenic Diet has been found to be the most impactful for metabolic syndrome, but also for diabetics who are currently on medications.

High stress spikes cortisol, blood sugar and insulin. Stress reduction techniques like yoga (and other exercise), meditation, breathing practice, clinical therapy, acupuncture, and massage therapy can all be beneficial.

Our naturopathic doctors will work with you to help you manage your symptoms, prevent diabetes (or treat existing diabetes), and get to the source of your insulin resistance through your own individualized treatment plan. It may include:

  • Specific dietary modifications –– eliminating food intolerances; increase in fibre, vegetables, fats and protein, decrease in starches and sugars; increase omega 3 fatty acid-rich foods; education and recommendation for a ketogenic diet or intermittent fasting.
  • Vitamins, minerals, enzymes –– may include chromium, vanadium, alpha-lipoic acid, B Vitamins, and others.
  • Botanicals –– such as devils club, gymnema, momordica, and milk thistle.
  • Exercise Guidance and recommendations
  • Stress reduction techniques, tools, and resources
What are the signs and symptoms of prediabetes?

You may be unaware that you have insulin resistance issues.  Some of the signs and symptoms are similar to those of diabetes.  Others are evidence of higher than normal amounts of insulin.  Symptoms of insulin resistance may include:

  • Excess thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Weight gain
  • Hormone imbalances (excess estrogen or testosterone)
  • PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome)
  • Elevated cholesterol
  • High triglycerides
  • Elevated HbA1c or glycated hemoglobin
  • High blood pressure
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Fatigue or muscle weakness
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Acanthosis nigricans (darkened patches of skin on the neck, underarms, elbows, knees, knuckles)
What causes insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome?

Factors that have been shown to cause or contribute to metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance include:

  • Poor diet
  • Being overweight
  • Lack of exercise/physical activity
  • Sleep apnea
  • Hormonal changes such as pregnancy, peri-menopause, menopause and andropause (male menopause)
  • Some medicine including steroids and antidepressants
  • Some medical conditions such as Cushing’s and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiencies
Common Signs, Symptoms or concerns patients present with in our office
  • Abdominal pain
  • Abdominal Gas or Bloating
  • Acid Reflux or Heart Burn
  • Brain fog, poor memory, reduced concentration, poor focus
  • Constipation or Diarrhea
  • Excessive Burping or Flatulence
  • Food allergies or food intolerances.
  • Skin problems: acne, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis & other rashes or itching
  • Anxiety and Depression or other mood disorders
  • Headaches or Migraines
  • Yeast Overgrowth
  • Difficulty losing weight, despite a balanced diet and exercise
  • Lack of Appetite or Lethargy after eating
  • Environmental Allergies (grass, pollen, etc.) or Asthma
  • Hormonal Imbalances (painful heavy menses, PMS, PCOS, etc.)
  • Autoimmune Conditions: Celiac Disease, Hashimoto’s Hypothyroid, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, MS, psoriasis and others
  • Chronic Fatigue or Fibromyalgia
Symptoms of food sensitivities
  • Chronic constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Heartburn or Indigestion
  • Boating and gas
  • Abdominal cramps and pain
  • Acne
  • Eczema or Itchy skin
  • Hives
  • Migraines or headaches
  • Immediate fatigue after a meal
  • Increased heart rate
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Joint pain
  • Respiratory problems
Ig E Food Allergy

Ig E Food Allergy is an Immediate Food Reaction that most people are familiar with.  As the name implies, this food reaction can occur within minutes or up to 3 hours after ingestion. Peanuts that cause anaphylaxis in a child is an Ig E food allergy. The reaction is caused by the presence of a high Ig E antibody levels in the blood, which sets off an immediate allergic response. Ig E antibodies make up only a small percentage of our immune system (about 5-10% of our white blood cells), but exert the most severe  and life threatening reactions. Symptoms can include rashes or full body hives after eating an apple, immediate vomiting or diarrhea from milk, or an intense headache after drinking wine. These reactions can be tested for by either an allergist or a naturopathic doctor.

Ig G Food Sensitivity

Ig G Food Sensitivity (or food intolerance) is a type IV delayed hypersensitivity reaction in the immune system that can occur a few hour and up 72 hours after ingestion of the reactive food. This window of time makes it difficult to link one’s symptom to the food eaten a day or two prior. Such hidden allergies are often the cause of many chronic symptoms. The immune response to delayed food reactions are often caused by antibodies other than Ig E. They are mediated by immunoglobulins: Ig G, Ig A, Ig M and Ig D. The Ig G antibody is the largest circulating antibody in our immune system (about 80-85% of our white blood cells) and can cross the placenta from mother to child. Ig G antibodies are the most common form of immunologic-mediated food responses. These antibodies combine with the food particles in the blood to form “immune complexes” which cause inflammatory reactions in tissues. Such inflammatory reactions can occur in any part of the body, thus producing many kinds of symptoms such as headache, eczema, joint pain, mental disorders, etc.

Testosterone

Testosterone is the main male sex hormone, but it’s important for women as well, in smaller amounts. Testosterone helps maintain muscle mass and bone strength, enhances sex drive and helps with overall sense of well-being and zest for life. Overall, lower testosterone levels are being found among men in the general population. In men, testosterone levels decline about 10% every decade, but sometimes the levels drop sooner or more severe than they should. Environmental factors play a large role and low testosterone in men is commonly overlooked. Some of the warning signs of low testosterone levels include infertility, decreased muscle mass, depression, weight gain, decreased sex drive, and fatigue. There are many natural approaches to balancing hormone levels and supporting men and women in being healthy.

DHEA

DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone) is primarily produced in your adrenal glands alongside cortisol, but it’s also produced in the brain and the gonads (Ovaries, testes). DHEA is the precursor to testosterone and even estrogen. Stress and aging are the two main reasons DHEA declines. Low DHEA can lead to low sex drive, muscle and joint pain, reduced bone density, depression and weight gain.

Sometimes, women can suffer from high DHEA called masculinization such as deep voice, facial hair or male-patterned baldness. In men, it can also lead to feminine traits, such as increased breast tissue and testicular wasting. Other possible symptoms include fatigue, sweating, and acne.

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