Is the gut the gateway to disease?

You may have heard of the term functional medicine, also known as the root cause. When you look at a tree you see the trunk, branches and the leaves. However what you don’t see is the roots. The roots are underground working away to feed the tree. If the roots aren’t healthy and not working efficiently than you will see a sick tree. Well this applies to our bodies as well. If we are eating the right food and have a healthy gut than we will have optimal energy, glowing skin and shiny thick hair.

The human gut is just like tree roots. Without a well functioning gut the body isn’t able to get all the nutrients needed to work properly. If you have ever felt tired, had terrible skin, aching joints or even hormone issues than it is mostly stemmed from poor gut function.

I have a few examples for you.

1. In the modern world too many people are eating processed food. Processed food can be low in nutrients, high in additives and predominately wheat based. After a period of time of eating non-nutritious food we put pressure on our digestive systems, irritating them. This can lead to leaky gut also known as increased intestinal permeability. Food components including gluten will leak into our blood stream. The body will see this as an invader, increasing it’s immune defense. This can cause various conditions including painful joints, fatigue, poor skin conditions including psoriasis and eczema. It can also cause more severe chronic condition such as fibromyalgia.

2. The body has 10 bacteria’s to 1 cell. We are made up of more bacteria than cells. Bacteria is responsible for controlling our immune system and digesting our food. Thus why bacteria plays such a huge part in our health. When we get sick with infections we will go to the doctors and be proscribed antibiotics. These antibiotics will kill the bad bacteria however it will also kill the good bacteria. We then may choose the wrong types of food to eat, high sugar intake, processed food, and alcohol which all encourage the growth of bad bacteria. This can lead too SIBO ‘small intestinal bacteria overgrowth.’ SIBO can cause food intolerances, IBS, weight loos, chronic fatigue, osteoporosis, diabetes, autoimmune disease and so much more. Once again symptoms that may not look like your typical digestive problems are all beginning from an unhealthy gut.  


So often we are taking pills to fix the presenting problem, for example we take pain killers for a headache instead of hydrating. In a lot of causes the medication taken to fix the initial problem is causing additional health issues, that are much worse than the originally issue. More and more research is coming out to show that the root cause is usually stemmed from our gut.

We need to look after our digestive health, eat nourishing food and less processed, refined carbohydrates and alcohol. When presenting with a health condition whatever it may be look at your gut first. 

Sarah Stewart