Many of us have plans to get away over the next couple of months, whether at home or away. But for those with sensitive digestion, being out of a regular routine while on holidays can cause digestive havoc. Read on for some tips on relaxing the routine while away without wreaking havoc on digestion.
The number of people avoiding gluten and wheat has hugely increased in recent years, with 1 in 5 of us now regularly buying gluten free products. As demand rises, so does the availability of all sorts of gluten free products, from bread to jellies and everything in between. But is it really better to avoid wheat and gluten or is this just a passing fad? [Read more…]
The nervous system in our gut has been called the ‘second brain’. It is connected to our brain via sympathetic and parasympathetic pathways and has bi-directional activity. In simple terms, this is the gut-brain axis, and it works both ways. A review published in October 2021 discusses the roles of gut bacteria and intestinal cells in chronic pain, neuropathy and hyperalgesia (increased sensitivity or response to pain)1. It is important to note that many studies which explain pathways and signalling are carried out in mice. This is very common in cell signalling and in nutrition. [Read more…]
Many of us may be able to relate to feeling better when we eat dark chocolate. Several of it’s constituents have known positive effects on mood. These include theobromine and tryptophan, the precursor to our feel good neurotransmitter serotonin. However, new research has shown another way in which dark chocolate enhances mood – by changing our microbiome. This community of bacteria, archae, yeasts and other organisms that reside mainly in our gut profoundly affects our mood and immune system as well as our digestion.
All food is made up of complex mixtures of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. These need to be broken down by our digestive system via enzymes into much simpler single sugars, amino acids and fatty acids in order for us to absorb and use these to produce energy. When this process is not working well, we can suffer from nutritional deficiencies and malabsorption.