The digestive system is the lifeline of our entire body and plays a very intricate role when it comes our body systems functioning at an optimal level. Our gut is not only responsible for processing everything that we put inside our bodies, but it is the core of our immune system and the primary center through which every cell in our body communicates. Body systems affected by gut health include:
- Nervous System
- Intestinal pH
- Reproductive System
- Immune System
Problems Related to a Sick Gut
Imbalance in the digestive system can cause a plethora of issues that can turn into chronic illness if left unchecked for a prolonged period of time. Some of physical ailments that can result from a sick gut:
- Gut Inflammation, also known as IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
- Migraine Headaches
- Stiff and achy muscle joints
- Chronic Fatigue
- Foggy Thinking
- Autoimmune Deficiency
- Difficulty assimilating nutrients
Now that you are aware of how your gut health is deeply interconnected with your overall well-being, here are a few steps you can take to keep your digestive system running smoothly:
- Add Probiotic Supplements. Incorporating a probiotic supplement into your daily diet not only cultivates good bacteria in your gut, but improves immune system function and can alleviate digestive issues.
- Stay Hydrated. Drinking plenty of water will help your better assimilate fats and soluble fiber and softens stool so it passes through the colon with ease.
- Move Your Body. Exercise increases blood flow to your organs and tones muscles in the GI tract—making it easier for the colon to pass waste.
If you have any questions, give us at (361) 551-2288 to make your appointment.
When it comes to debilitating illnesses such as diabetes, arthritis, cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimers, researchers are discovering that inflammation may be the root cause behind the advancement of these diseases.
What Causes Inflammation
Inflammation is the body's way of responding to stress. When the body is under attack by foreign invaders (viruses, bacteria, fungus, etc.), inflammation is a protective mechanism that aims to eliminate the foreign invaders to allow the body to heal itself. Inflammation is a process of cleansing and for this purpose—it’s very necessary for the body.
This process only becomes unnecessary (and dangerous) for the body when acute inflammation—which lasts for a short amount of time and clears up within a few days—turns into chronic inflammation lasting for prolonged periods of time.
Chronic inflammation is often caused by stress, a diet lacking the proper nutrients, inactive lifestyle, food allergies and much more.
Symptoms of Inflammation
The body will definitely communicate with us when something is out of balance and that communication is different for everyone.
Here are some symptoms of inflammation that your body may be using to get your attention:
- Joint pain and stiffness
- Joint immobility
- Fatigue/Loss of Energy
How to Prevent Inflammation
Studies have shown that there is a link between chronic inflammation and the digestive system, so diet is undoubtedly a dominating factor when it comes to combating this condition. Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into one’s diet will not only reduce inflammation, but transition the body into a state that will begin to heal the conditions and cultivate overall wellness.
Anti-Inflammatory Food List:
- Green Leafy Vegetables
- Nuts and Seeds
- Beans and Lentils
- Acai Fruit
If you have any questions, give us at (361) 551-2288 to make your appointment.
More than 27 million Americans have some sort of thyroid disease and about half of them have no idea they suffer from a thyroid imbalance. Would you know if you had a thyroid imbalance? Here are some quick facts about the thyroid that can help you better understand how it impacts your overall health and wellbeing.
This small, brownish-red gland is positioned in front of the neck just above the Adam’s apple. Shaped like a butterfly and abundant with blood vessels, the thyroid is essential for secreting hormones—thyroxine(T4) and triiodothyronine(T3)—that influence metabolism balance, growth and development of the brain, and regulating body temperature. The adrenals, kidneys, and liver are also interconnected with the health of the thyroid, so it’s important to keep these organs operating at their optimal levels.
Signs of Thyroid Dysfunction and Hypothyroidism
- Enhanced appetite accompanied with weight loss
- Increased heart rate, heart palpitations, high blood pressure, nervousness, and excessive perspiration.
- Frequent bowel movements; diarrhea
- Muscle weakness; trembling hands
- Lighter or shorter menstrual cycles
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism, in which the body is not producing enough thyroid hormones:
- Chronic fatigue, delayed mental processes, and depression
- Decreased heart rate
- Increased sensitivity to cold
- Tingling or numbness in hands
- Development of goiter (an enlargement in the neck)
- Heavy menstrual cycles and constipation
- Dry hair and skin
The main issue with standard lab tests is that they have the ability to give us some valid information about thyroid function, but they fail to examine the system as a whole.
Getting to the root of thyroid disorder and hypothyroidism involves ordering the right tests and interpreting the tests correctly to avoid misdiagnosis. Here is a patient guideline for what tests your doctor should be ordering:
- TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone)
- Free T3
- Free T4
- Reverse T3
- Thyroid peroxidase and thyroglobulin antibodies
- Sex hormone binding globulin
- Iron studies
Getting the thyroid gland back to its proper healthy state will undoubtedly take some effort, but the human body is resilient. With a little education on the body systems and adjusting our diet and other daily habits, the body will naturally balance itself out and begin to perform at its fullest potential.
To learn more about thyroid health and the labs needed, schedule a consultation with Dr. Nhi Le and get informed. Call us at (361) 551-2288 to make your appointment.
Find out when it’s time to turn to an internal medicine specialist for care.
While no one relishes going to the doctor, sometimes it is necessary. Maybe the over-the-counter medicine you are using just isn’t cutting it, or you are still experiencing uncomfortable symptoms despite changes made to your lifestyle. Let our Victoria, TX, internist Dr. Nhi Le provide you with the care you need when you need it most.
What does an internist do?
While the title alone makes it seem as if our Victoria, TX, doctor of internal medicine only focuses on problems that occur internally, this actually isn’t accurate at all. While an internist will certainly treat problems that affect different organs and systems in the body, her goal as your doctor is to treat the whole person rather than a specific region. This means that you get more comprehensive care.
Our internist has received the proper training necessary to help prevent, diagnose and treat a wide variety of conditions. When you share your personal and family history, as well as your lifestyle, with our internist Dr. Le, it is her job to determine what risk factors may predispose you to certain conditions and ways to prevent health problems, such as diabetes. Of course, if you are already facing a chronic disorder she can also help create a customized treatment plan to help you manage your symptoms and to improve your quality of life.
From kidney disorders to joint dysfunction to infectious diseases, our internal doctor is here to treat it all. No matter whether you are dealing with the flu or you are looking for the source of your chronic fatigue, she has the diagnostic tools to get to the bottom of your symptoms and to get you feeling better.
Don’t let annoying issues like migraines or abdominal pain affect your day-to-day life. Our Victoria, TX, internal care specialist knows how important it is to get the medical care you need. Give her office a call today and let her know how she can help.
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