By Dr. Timothy Jones
Do you have trouble losing extra weight even though you’re exercising regularly and eating healthy foods?
Starving yourself to lose weight isn’t good for your body, and a super hard-core exercise program may not be the answer, either. These are both extremes, most people’s needs fall somewhere in between, according to Dr. Timothy Jones of Path of Life Functional Medicine in Avila Beach.
So let’s take a closer look at something that’s becoming a near epidemic in Western culture, because it very well may apply to your situation.
Just as it takes a village to raise a child, it also takes a bacterial community to keep YOU healthy.
Yes, you have a village of microorganisms living inside you. It’s a symbiotic relationship. You rely on each other for survival. This community is called your Microbiome, and it lives in your intestinal tract.
When this community is in balance, it helps you with digestion and absorbing nutrients so you can create energy for your body to use. It helps to keep your hormones balanced, so that you feel appropriately hungry or satisfied. When it’s out of balance, stuff starts to hit the fan, and chaos ensues.
How does the microbiome get out of balance?
The overuse of antibiotics may be the biggest cause. Even if you don’t take antibiotics, you likely get them indirectly through the food you eat. Up to 80% of the antibiotics sold in the US are fed to livestock for various reasons.
Antibiotics kill bacteria, and they don’t discriminate. So you lose the helpful ones, too. Unfortunately, the bacteria we call “bad” earn that label because they are so adept at repopulating. You get an overgrowth… An imbalance.
Chlorination and fluoridation in municipal water supply also do a number on gut bacteria.
The resulting imbalance leads to inflammation, which can cause weight gain all by itself. And it also causes a permeability issue in your intestinal lining, commonly known as leaky gut.
This leads to your immune system reacting badly too many foods that are normally considered to be healthy. Which releases another negative cascade of more health problems.
As if this weren’t enough, the bacterial imbalance also causes a hormonal imbalance. Which can affects metabolism, mood, sleep, the ability to think clearly, skin breakouts, and more. Particularly those hunger pangs you get even though your brain knows that you’ve had plenty enough to eat.
And we are not done yet. Sometimes this in balance can be a bit sneaky. You may not realize you even have digestive problems, because you don’t have the typical heartburn, gas, or bloating you most often hear about.
So if you’re eating a reasonable amount of healthy foods, and you still can’t lose that extra weight, why not try healing your gut? It just may be the answer you’re looking for. Contact Path of Life Functional Medicine at (805) 738-3595.
This article originally appeared on the Path of Life Functional Medicine website. See the original post HERE.