Functional Testing: Gut & Microbiome
By evaluating key gut markers and the composition of our gut bacteria we are evaluating a cornerstone of our health.
Compromised digestive function may result in bloating and gas, indigestion, constipation, diarrhoea and abdominal pain. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth is also very common and causes a wealth of symptoms.
Research suggests a poorly functioning gastrointestinal (GI) tract may also result in symptoms away from the GI tract including :-
- hormonal imbalances
- low thyroid function
- anxiety & brain fog
- immune system dysregulation
- chronic fatigue syndrome
GI EcologiX - Gastrointestinal Health & Microbiome Profile
GI EcologiX™ is the ultimate gut health and microbiome stool test using qPCR & ELISA technology to provide a comprehensive analysis of the GI ecosystem and chronic disease-related microbial (bacteria, yeast, parasites) markers, which are backed by the clinical literature, alongside host health markers.
It is a chronic disease-centric profile, replacing acute microbial markers and those routinely tested for in healthcare systems. This is my recommended gut test.
Needing just two swabs from one sample, this is a simple and easy home testing kit.
SIBO Breath Test - Glucose/Lactulose
This breath test measures hydrogen and methane gasses in response to glucose or lactulose. If SIBO is present, the bacteria will begin to metabolise glucose/lactulose, producing hydrogen and/or methane gas.
The breath collection device included in the kits ensures accurate measuring of alveolar air and not room air, thus guarding against potential false negatives associated with other breath collection processes. A 24-48 hours preparation diet is required to complete the test
© Sandra James 2020
Our Gut Microbiome
Billions of microorganisms colonise the gastrointestinal tract, which extends from the stomach to the rectum. The presence and activity of these microorganisms is fundamental for physiologic homeostasis. They play a key role in the development of the immune system, digestion of fibres, production of energy metabolites, vitamins and neurotransmitters and in the defence against pathogen colonisation.
The disruption of these microbial communities - dysbiosis - has been associated with several diseases including metabolic syndrome, systemic inflammation, autoimmune and mental health conditions. An overgrowth of yeast or presence of parasites is also common.
It is also worth considering the following tests as an alternative or for additional screening-
Great Plains Organic Acids test
Includes yeast, fungal and gut microbial picture. Excellent test if also wanting to assess fatigue, nutrient status, oxalates, mitochondria & detox.
Assesses the oral microbiome – a key ecosystem in the gut-brain connection, and for cardiovascular and female reproductive health. The oral cavity is a
complex ecosystem, comprising several habitats including the teeth, gums,
tongue and tonsils, all colonised by bacteria.
The majority of oral microbiota species exist within a structure termed the oral biofilm (dental plaque). In healthy individuals, the oral biofilm is dominated by commensal bacteria that maintain a healthy mouth.
The disruption of this, termed dysbiosis, has been linked to a multitude of conditions including dental caries, gingivitis, peridontitis, as well as systemic health conditions such as cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer's disease,
There is now also research data is highly suggestive of the oral microbiome being a key player in pregnancy outcomes which tells us that considering the health of oral microbiome is also key when working on fertility.
The female urinary microbiomes (gut-bladder-vagina) are a key factor for women’s health. Crucial for a healthy vaginal environment is a specific, but delicate microbial balance, characterised by a low species diversity, a low vaginal pH and dominance of Lactobacillus species.
There is a growing body of resarch into the female microbiomes, urinary tract infections (UTIs) and probiotics specific for this microbial community. Read more on testing here