Poor gut health affects so many of us, however, it’s a really complicated topic, with very little in the way of ‘black and white’ advice. The NHS says that around 40% of people have at least one digestive symptom at any one time –quite a substantial statistic. However often digestive disorders go undiagnosed as we are only just beginning to understand the importance of ‘the gut’ (which scientists are now calling our second brain). To further complicate things many common symptoms occur in a wide range of digestive disorders – while some are relatively harmless, such as bloating, others can be more sinister like inflammatory bowel disease.
I’ve recently been to a few fantastic gut health events and lectures, including The Rooted Project’s event, where we had a fascinating lecture from Professor Kevin Whelan. Below is a summary of take home messages from that lecture.
Better Gut Health Advice:
However, for me, I’m not an expert or a specialist in gut health, and so can’t offer more than the basics when it comes to advice around digestive health. This is especially true if someone thinks they may have a medical condition (for example IBS or coeliac disease), or that they need to go on a specialist diet such as low FODMAP or dairy/gluten free diets. It’s so important that you get advice from someone qualified (such as a Dietitian) to talk about this and also that you get tested for intolerances and allergies at a hospital or with a GP before self-diagnosing.
A perfect person to give you advice on digestive health is the scientist, Registered Dietitan and instagram phenomenon Dr Megan Rossi. Megan certainly knows her stuff when it comes to the gut, FODMAPS and probiotics, and she was part of the panel for The Rooted Project event alongside Kevin Whelan and Laura Thomas PhD.
Megan is currently a Research Associate at King’s College London and also runs a private, specialist gut health clinic on Harley Street.
The Basics of Gut Health Advice:
Many people ask me for tips and advice about gut health and, although I can’t diagnose or even offer any specialist advice, I can cover the main tips and support needed to help people improve their digestive health. Luckily however, Megan has provided a really fantastic, simple and easy to understand infographic on this subject, which she has kindly let me use for this blog to help healthy people make the most of their digestive health!