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Gutbliss

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Stool transplantation proves effective in reducing autism symptoms by nearly 50% two years post transplant. A recent study conducted a special type of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) known as Microbiota Transfer Therapy (MTT – a 10-week treatment process in which a stool transplant is performed daily for 7 to 8 weeks) and found that initial gut improvements (58% reduction in GI symptoms) as well as slow and steady positive changes in autism-related symptoms (language, social interaction, and behavior – quantified at a 45% reduction in overall symptoms) are lasting, even two years after the date of transplantation. Improvements in positive microbial markers, as well as increases in favorable species and diversity, also remained for the two years post transplant. Scientific Reports Takeaway: Today, approximately 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), an exponential increase from 1 in every 150 in 2000. Despite such a weighty percentage of…

Weight control could be more genetic than previously thought.New studies confirm a genetic mutation that makes people feel full all the time, which may explain why some people are less interested in food and naturally thin. The first study included half a million participants between the ages of 40 and 69. Through DNA samples, medical records, and years of health tracking, scientists identified a genetic alteration in about 6% of the population that mutes appetite and protects against cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The single gene, MC4R, plays a key role in hunger and satiety (the feeling of fullness). During a meal, the gene is turned on to send signals of fullness, and then turns off. The mutation involved in this study occurs when the gene is turned on all the time, therefore the person always feels full. The gene can also play a role in obesity in those who have…

Should I avoid gluten is probably a question many of us have asked ourselves over the last few years. Here is some useful information that may help you get to the right answer. As you may know, gluten (a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley) can trigger an immune response in some individuals, causing damage to the small intestinal lining as well as other symptoms related to fertility, bone health, nutrient absorption, and neurological pathways, to name a few. Other people don’t feel so well when they eat gluten but don’t have any sort of immune reaction. Gluten intolerance can be classified into 3 main buckets: · Celiac disease- a condition in which gluten triggers an immune response that damages the intestinal lining. This condition affects approximately 1% of the population. · Wheat allergy– an allergic reaction to proteins found in wheat, most common in children. Symptoms include nausea and anaphylaxis. · Non-celiac gluten…

Avoiding gluten is the number one therapy for treating celiac disease, yet a new study finds that GF labels are overwhelmingly unreliable. Using a portable device designed to detect gluten (Nima), crowd-sourced data was collected measuring the risk factors for and rates of gluten contamination in restaurant foods labeled GF. Results found that out of the 5,624 tests performed, 32% of restaurant foods labeled GF actually contained gluten, with dinner foods being the most likely to be contaminated. The most problematic foods were pizza and pasta with a contamination percentage of 53.2% and 50.8% respectively. There was also a geographic significance to gluten contamination: GF labeled foods were more likley to contain gluten in the Northeast U.S. as opposed to the West. American Journal of Gastroenterology Takeaway: While restaurant gluten contamination rates have not yet been investigated for clinical significance (for example, how the sometimes vey low levels of contamination the device…

Did you know since laparoscopic technique was introduced into popular practice in the 1990s, the number of cholecystectomies (surgery for gallbladder removal) in the US has almost doubled? Laparoscopic cholecystectomy minimized what was a large incision to a few tiny punctures, reduced infection rates, scar tissue, hospital stay, and surgery time, and sped up healing and recovery. But is it an incredible coincidence that just as the surgery got easier, so many more people developed gallbladder problems—or are there additional reasons to explain why people are losing their gallbladders in record numbers? Technological advances in medicine always generate excitement, and doctors don’t always follow guidelines designed to prevent unnecessary procedures. Plus, some doctors believe an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and so have a low threshold for whipping out your gallbladder, even when the indication for surgery may be murky. If you aren’t asking lots of…

Did you know the recommended age for colorectal cancer (CRC) screening is now 45 for the general population (or those at average risk)? The age recommendation (previously 50) changed in May 2018 after researchers analyzed data and found that the rate of new CRC cases is increasing in younger adult populations. This new age recommendation will result in earlier CRC detection and will save more lives. While colonoscopy is the gold standard test for CRC screening and recommended every 10 years between ages 45 and 75 for those at average risk, stool-based tests can also be used, as long as immediate follow-up with a colonoscopy is performed in the presence of an abnormal test. These tests include an annual highly sensitive fecal immunochemical test (FIT), an annual highly sensitive guaiac-based fecal occult blood test (gFOBT), and a multi-targeted stool DNA test (MT-sDNA) every 3 years. For some, screening is recommended…

Drinking at least a couple liters of water every day is important for regular bowel movements and overall gut health, but it’s not just the amount of water you’re drinking – the quality of your water matters too, especially when it comes to the health of your gut bacteria. Modern water systems are treated with chlorine, a disinfectant that protects us from illnesses like cholera and typhoid fever. While arguably one of the most important public health interventions of the 20th century, unfortunately chlorine-based disinfectants have a significant downside too – they can be harmful to our microbiome. Preliminary studies suggest that chlorine derived disinfectants like chloramine and sodium hypochlorite can lower microbial diversity, and may increase our risk for disease. If you’ve ever accidentally killed a goldfish or houseplant with tap water you might have wondered how safe it is for you! So what’s the solution? While it’s premature (and currently not advisable) to…

Did you know women have longer colons than men – on average four to five inches longer? That may not seem like much but it can cause a lot of extra looping and twists and turns – what I like to call: The Voluptuous Venus Colon. Women also have a wider, deeper, pelvis in order to accommodate a fetus during pregnancy. This means that in women, the colon is located low down in the pelvis, where it has to compete for space with the reproductive organs. Men have a narrower pelvis so most of their colon ends up in the roomier abdominal area, and when it is in the pelvis, the only other thing taking up space there is a very small prostate gland. Men also have higher levels of testosterone, which causes their abdominal muscles to be tighter and stronger. In women, lower testosterone levels means a weaker abdominal wall…

Candida auris is resistant to many anti-fungals and has recently been making its way around the world. If it makes its way into your bloodstream, it can cause a life threatening infection. Mostly found in hospitals and nursing homes, once Candida auris is present, it’s extremely difficult to get rid of. What you need to know about Candida auris: 587 cases have been reported in the U.S., mostly in New York, New Jersey, and Illinois 90% of infections are resistant to at least one anti-fungal medication, and 30% are resistant to two or moreRemoving floors and ceilings is often necessary to rid facilities of the yeastImmune compromised patients are most at risk for contracting C. auris, including the elderly, infants, pregnant women, and those who are chronically ill or on a medication that weakens the immune systemIf you are healthy and spend little or no time in hospitals or nursing homes, you probably have nothing to worry about. If…

Did you know that the enteric nervous system (ENS – the nervous system that controls the functions of the gut) has half a billion neurons – that’s five times the amount than in your spinal cord – which is why the gut is often referred to as “the second brain”? 90% of your “feel good” hormone, serotonin, and 50% of your dopamine is also located in the gut. The food you eat alters the response of your enteric nervous system, and this can have large impacts on your entire body.