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Persistent Gut Problems? Analyse then Treat. No Guesswork


Dr. Rodney Lopez

MBBS (Usyd) GradCertNutriMed (RMIT)

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Biofilms: May just be the reason why your bowel symptoms don't disappear

Are slimy, mucinous layers that contain normal (commensal) microorganisms that exist as communities that are essentially biological systems. The biofilms help the bacterial colonies to stick to the bowel lining. However, biofilms may also become colonised by pathogenic bacteria that can communicate with each other (Quorum Sensing) and take over from normal bacterial colonies. These biofilms result in persistent bowel symptoms and recurrent gastrointestinal infections. A product that contains synergistic organic compounds can help to overcome this biofilm protection. Activ8Health practitioners are well-versed in treating chronic and debilitating bowel disorders through analysis and then targeted treatment.

Without treatment, the pathogenic bacterial colonies will weaken the bowel wall and tight junctions, which bind the intestinal cells together. They become weak, allowing proteins, food and bacteria to cross into the circulation to trigger various systemic problems such as rashes, organ damage and increase the risk for cardiovascular and brain injury over time.

Trying to overcome biofilms and gut dysbiosis

Individuals with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Small Intestine Fungal Overgrowth (SIFO) and Large Intestine Bowel Overgrowth (LIBO). An excellent paper published in the journal Nature outlines the complex nature of biofilms for both good and bad outcomes280.

For anyone who has suffered from persistent bowel concerns and has been investigated extensively for problems such as persistent diarrhoea, constipation or abdominal discomfort and bloating where nothing was discovered and then given antispasmodics or antibiotics or a variety of other "try this" medical treatments, then biofilms may be the reason you are not getting any better.

Using antibiotics may be hit and miss and may cause even more problems, such as Clostridium difficile superinfections, which can be life-threatening. So is it any wonder that people suffer in silence as getting regular endoscopies is NOT therapeutic and can in itself pose a threat from complications caused by endoscopy.

Plant-Based Antimicrobials
There are many herbal compounds that have known antimicrobial activity, and this has been known for centuries. Multiple antibiotics are often used to overcome resistance to medical management, so too multiple herbal compounds can be used to overcome bacterial resistance and penetrate gut mucosal biofilms that protect pathobionts, which are organisms that can cause trouble and persistent symptoms.

These herbal compounds include:

• Allium sativum (Garlic)
• Cinnamomum cassia (Cinnamon)
• Nigella sativa (Black Cumin)
• Origanum vulgare (Oregano)
• Phellodendron amurense (Amur Cork)
• Punica granatum (Pomegranate) peel

You can find a practitioner to help you with this product. Click the 'Find a Practitioner' button above right.

Lactobacilli Reuteri Strains and the Gut - Brain Axis 

Two Lactobacilli reuteri strains, in particular, have been shown to colonise the gastrointestinal tract (GIT). These strains can have an anti-inflammatory effect to dampen GIT inflammation, and this has ramifications for the body and the brain. It has become more apparent that gut inflammation may produce inflammatory proteins that can cross the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) to inflict damage there.

These strains are available to use with prebiotics, and Activ8Health practitioners will be able to guide you in this regard.