Category

Gut & digestion

Gut & digestion
January 23, 2019

What is Crohn’s disease?

Along with ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease is one of two forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). With both diseases, the immune system attacks the cells in the gastrointestinal tract, causing inflammation, sores, bleeding, cramps and diarrhoea. Crohn’s disease differs from ulcerative colitis in that it can affect almost any part of the digestive system, while ulcerative colitis almost always affects the large intestine. Crohn’s disease can also penetrate the entire bowel wall. Ulcerative colitis only involves the innermost lining of the colon. Both conditions are chronic diseases: they persist over time and, to date, there isn’t a cure for either…
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Gut & digestion
October 22, 2018

Home remedies for an upset stomach

Was it something you ate, or do you have a tummy bug? You can’t eat or move comfortably without feeling a jolt of pain, so you stay home, curled up in a ball. There’s nothing like an upset stomach to ruin your day, but before you reach for another painkiller, try these remedies to ease those cramps. Ginger This spicy root vegetable adds a kick to hot drinks and meals, but did you know it can ease cramps too? Ginger contains chemicals (called gingerols and shogaols) that can help speed up digestion. It does this by making your stomach contract…
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Gut & digestion
September 18, 2018

Do you have food poisoning or gastro?

You feel a sharp pain in your stomach and nausea washes over you. Did the burger you just ate give you food poisoning, or do you have a stomach bug? Two of the most common causes of stomach discomfort is food poisoning and gastro. Let’s take a look at the differences between them. What is 'gastro'? Commonly known as the stomach flu, gastroenteritis (also called 'gastro'), is caused by a viral infection that attacks your digestive system. Different types of stomach flu are caused by different things. Stomach viruses are very contagious. You can get gastro by: Eating food or…
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Gut & digestion
September 18, 2018

Is milk bad for you?

We have bee told "Milk is good for you!" since we were children. Our mothers, and advertising ingrained this nugget into our minds for years. But should milk really be part of your diet? Milk is a whole food which provides 18 out of 22 essential nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc and protein.  Unfortunately, though, about 75% of the world’s population isn’t able to break down lactose; a core ingredient in milk. Despite its benefits, milk may put you at risk for some conditions. For example, research shows that countries with the lowest rates of dairy and calcium intake also…
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Gut & digestion
September 18, 2018

What is Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)?

Millions of adults suffer from heartburn. Although many of us brush off these symptoms as “nothing to worry about,” you may be at risk of GERD. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) happens when the acid in your stomach frequently flows back into the tube, which connects your mouth and stomach (oesophagus). The backwash of the acid (acid reflux) irritates the lining of the oesophagus, causing different uncomfortable symptoms. According to the American Gastroenterological Association, approximately 1 out of 3 people suffer from GERD and symptoms range from moderate to severe. Usually, GERD can be managed and treated with lifestyle changes and…
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Gut & digestion
August 9, 2018

Over-the-counter meds to get rid of heartburn

You’ve just eaten a delicious meal. Instead of feeling satisfied though, you have that familiar uncomfortable sensation of heartburn. Ugh! Heartburn, also known as pyrosis, is a burning feeling in your chest. It happens when stomach acid flows back up the oesophagus (the tube that carries food and fluids from the mouth to the stomach). This is usually because the sphincter (a band of muscle around the end of the oesophagus, that keeps it closed off) weakens, or doesn’t function properly. A bitter or sour taste in your throat or mouth is a common symptom when this happens. Different lifestyle…
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Gut & digestion
May 11, 2018

Heal your body by healing your gut

Millions of neurons line the gut and release important chemical messengers that allow the gut to keep in close contact with the brain, and influence our moods and emotions. This is one reason whey the digestive system is also known as the second brain. Digestion is critical as it breaks food into nutrients that the body uses for energy, growth, and cell repair. Mind and body connection There’s more to your digestive system than occasional aches and pains that come with heartburn, bloating, constipation and diarrhoea. Your gut is central to your overall health. It’s connected to everything that happens…
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Gut & digestion
February 20, 2018

Bloated or constipated? Then avoid these foods.

Suddenly can’t fit into your favourite jeans? Blame it on your bloated belly! Constipation and a bloated stomach go hand-in-hand. Constipation is the uncomfortable process when you find it difficult to pass stools; or it happens less often than it should. This varies from person to person to person, but usually, fewer than three bowel movements a week leads to constipation. If you have very hard or small stools, no appetite, a feeling that you can’t relieve yourself and bloating, you may be constipated. Bloating can be a symptom of constipation but it can also be caused by built-up gas…
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Gut & digestion
January 5, 2018

What your poo can tell you about your health

It may not be the most pleasant topic, but understanding your bowel movements better can improve your health, and even save your life!  Your stools hold secrets and valuable clues to your health, through their texture, shape and smell. The ideal poop should be soft and easy to pass; not hard, dry or overly loose. According to Dr Danie Pauw from Health24, one to three times per day is considered normal for some people, while others only go a few times a week. But it shouldn’t be less than three times a week. What is poo and why should you…
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Gut & digestion
January 5, 2018

There’s blood in my stool: what do I do?

When your poop waves red flags, it’s important to act fast. Normal stools can have various colours, ranging from shades of brown and even green. If you take a peek while doing your business and your stool is black or streaked with red, these could be warning signs of blood in your stool. Blood in your stool is usually caused by bleeding in the upper or lower part of your gut. Causes for black stools Black, tarry stools could mean you’ve taken too many iron supplements or eaten too much black liquorice. On the more serious side, you may be…
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