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Signs you have too much “Bad” gut bacteria and how you can change that

05/22/2016

leaned over holding stomachGenerally speaking, if you have frequent digestive symptoms, like discomfort, you likely have an issue with the balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut. The scientific term for this is Dysbiosis.

Dysbiosis (also called dysbacteriosis) is a term for a microbial imbalance and is most commonly associated with increased levels of harmful, "bad" bacteria and reduced levels of the beneficial "good" bacteria. Dysbiosis is usually associated with illnesses, such as inflammatory bowel disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, obesity, and colitis.

Typically we coexist with microbial colonies found on and in our bodies, and these colonies are normally benign and extremely beneficial. These beneficial bacteria carry out a series of helpful and necessary functions, such as aiding in digestion, promoting cell health and preventing pathogenic bacterial growth and infection. These beneficial microbial colonies form a complex ecosystem that compete with each other for space and resources and outnumber human cells by a factor of 10:1.

Dysbiosis is often the indication of other ongoing health problems and can be due to an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria as part of the imbalance in gut flora. Another cause may be due to weaknesses in the gut loaning membrane. The so called "good" gut bacteria produce byproducts that help keep the intestinal lining strong, such as short chain fatty acids, and without sufficient "good" bacteria to manufacture these substances, the intestinal lining becomes susceptible to damage and inflammation. This then leads to physical damage such as ulceration, which destroys areas of the mucosal lining of the intestinal wall. The breakdown in gut lining integrity allows disease-causing bacteria, toxins, and undigested food particles to pass directly into the bloodstream, where they disrupt the body's normal function in many ways. These effects are collectively also known as Leaky Gut Syndrome.

Although dysbiosis is a real condition, it is very difficult to diagnose an imbalance in gut bacteria. However, there are some signs of dysbiosis that we can look out for.

Some signs of dysbiosis are:
  1. Constipation
  2. Excess intestinal gas
  3. Too little or no intestinal gas
  4. Chronic diarrhea
  5. Chronic bad breath
Other symptoms associated with gut flora imbalance may include:
  1. Hormonal problems
  2. Prostate trouble
  3. Breast enlargement in men
  4. Need for sexual hormone medication
  5. Candida infection (candidiasis)
  6. Chronic anemia
  7. Chronic respiratory problems
  8. Dairy product allergies and intolerances
  9. Vitamin B deficiencies
  10. High cholesterol levels
  11. Neurological problems
  12. Severe bruising problems
  13. Chronic vaginal infections
  14. Chronic bladder infections
  15. Osteoporosis
  16. Sarcopenia

Although dysbiosis can lead to many debilitating and uncomfortable conditions, it is a wholly treatable condition. The best way to reverse dysbiosis and restore the good bacteria in your gut is to consume probiotics in the form of a probiotic supplement or by consuming probiotic foods such as yogurt or other fermented foods. This will reverse the imbalance associated with dysbiosis to favor the "good" gut bacteria and also reverse many if not all of the symptoms associated with dysbiosis. This will also help your gut lining heal and reduce the inflammation associated with leaky gut syndrome.

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