Gluten-Free Diets, Allergies, and Eczema – Common Markers of Bacterial Overgrowth

prokaryote_color_keyGluten-free diets are hot right now, so are probiotics, fiber blends, and yogurt. People have found that these diets or products help their stomachs, intestinal tracts, skin, and overall health. What do all of these things really do for us?

They change the acidity of your intestinal bacteria, but they are just the tip of the iceberg of a complex medical and nutritional problem that affects us all but is most striking in children. Over the past several decades some unknown combination of our food, antibiotics, and broken metabolisms have altered the millions of bacteria that live in our intestinal tracts.

Strains of bacteria that should only live in the lower level of our digestive tracts have migrated up, and they are sending signals to our brains, organs, and skin that make us sick. Most of us unknowingly have this silent condition called “SIBO” (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth) which is making us sick, tired, hungry, scatterbrained and anxious. When it is not treated effectively, I believe that it drives many chronic illnesses like ADD, Diabetes, High Blood Pressure and Obesity.

SIBO does not show up on routine tests and lab work. The easy way to determine if you or your kids have it is to just know some of the basic signs and symptoms: attention deficits, GI trouble, food intolerance (Gluten), dairy intolerance (milk), allergies, heartburn, bloating, eczema, or anxiety.

If changes in your diet, taking pro-biotics or fiber, or eating food like yogurt makes any of those symptoms better then you have indicator that SIBO might be driving your problems.Gluten-free diets, pro-biotics, and fibers can only work to a certain degree.

These things temporarily shift a person’s bacterial blend and they feel better for awhile, but they are hard to stick with. The dietary restrictions can be burdensome, product results may be inconsistent, or meals simply turn into a big fight with your kids. People give up, and then they feel even worse. The only permanent solution is to fix the underlying intestinal imbalances.Intestinal re-balancing may be achieved, especially in children, with the correct mixture of probiotics.

The majority of us however, need medical treatment and monitoring by a physician. My treatment plans vary from person to person, but the most important thing is to keep SIBO under control so it does not negatively affect brain function and trigger further disease.

Taking control over your bacteria, can help you take back control over your life.

Picture of Patrick Nemechek, D.O.

Patrick Nemechek, D.O.

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