Should You Test Your Stool?

Gastrointestinal complaints are among the most common reasons that patients seek medical care. The Comprehensive Stool Analysis (CDSA) is a non-invasive evaluation of gastrointestinal function. This test helps pinpoint imbalances, provides clues about current symptoms, and warns of potential problems should imbalances progress.

Here are some reasons to test your stool:

Do you ever experience?

o   Constipation

o   Diarrhea

o   Gas and/or bloating

o   Chronic yeast infections

o   Stomach aches

o   Mucus and/or blood in your stool

o   ‘Never well since’ a bout of traveler’s diarrhea

Recent evidence confirms that GI abnormalities may be associated with many conditions outside of the GI tract.

Extra-intestinal indications for testing your stool:

o   Joint pain

o   Autoimmune conditions (i.e. Celiac, IBD, Hashimoto’s, Psoriasis)

o   Skin concerns (i.e. Eczema, Rashes)

o   Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

o   Recurrent antibiotic use

o   Fibromyalgia

o   Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

Understanding “Leaky Gut”

Cornerstones of good health include proper digestion of food, absorption of nutrients, exclusion of pathogens and timely elimination of waste. To obtain benefits from food that is consumed, nutrients must be appropriately digested and then efficiently absorbed. Poor digestion leading to malabsorption of vital nutrients can contribute to many chronic diseases as well as a compromised digestive barrier. Impairment of the nutrient uptake processes as well as a compromised GI barrier function (aka "leaky gut") can result from a number of causes including:

  • Low gastric acid production

  • Chronic maldigestion

  • Food allergen impact on bowel absorptive surfaces 

  • Bacterial overgrowth or imbalances (dysbiosis)

  • Pathogenic bacteria, yeast or parasites

  • The use of NSAIDs (i.e. Advil, aspirin, Aleve) and antibiotics

 

What the CDSA Tells You:

  1.        What strains of beneficial bacteria reside in your digestive tract

  2.        The dysbiotic (bad!) bacteria and yeast that are present

  3.        Natural treatments to dysbiotic bacteria and all yeast cultured

  4.        How well you are digesting and absorbing food

  5.        If there is any inflammation or infection present in the digestive tract

  6.        Short chain fatty acid (SCFA) production which reflects fiber intake

 

Impairment of intestinal functions can contribute to the development of food allergies, systemic illnesses, autoimmune disease, and toxic overload from substances that are usually kept in the confines of the bowel for elimination. Get to the root of your symptoms now by testing your stool!

Erin Enns