Ever since I had a bad case of the stomach flu about five years ago, my digestive system has not been the same. For a while I self diagnosed myself as lactose intolerant but over time I began having trouble eating other foods and it came to the point where my digestive issues would affect my mental state, energy levels, and overall immunity.
My experience working with a Gastroenterologist.
I knew it was time to see an expert so, I scheduled a few appointments with a GI doctor. I had my blood drawn multiple times, stool sampled, and underwent an upper endoscopy and a colonoscopy. My doctor was really searching for a serious diseases like IBD, Crohn’s, Celiac’s, etc., but my gut feeling was telling me that the issue may be a bit more subtle.
I wanted to talk about lifestyle changes and diet modifications with my doctor before I went through more invasive procedures but the one time she and I discussed nutrition, she merely handed me a list of 50 foods I should try eliminating from my diet (aka a low FODMAPs diet). I was so overwhelmed and discouraged.
I felt like it was time to consult a nutritionist.
When I finally began seeing a nutritionist.
I began working with a certified nutrition consultant who specializes in digestive issues like mine. Like Ashlee, my NC also happens to be a graduate from Bauman College and I could tell she was extremely passionate and well-informed about holistic nutrition.
The first step to working with my nutrition consultant was to fill out a long detailed questionnaire about diet, symptoms, lifestyle, and mental health. All of these factors can affect the gut and the answers to those questions help with the big picture. I spilled my heart out while answering her questions because they all seemed to fit exactly what I was going through.
I was pleasantly surprised that my first consult with my NC was an hour and a half long! Nutritionists can take more time to get deep and truly understand what can be causing the issue. On the other hand, my doctor would only spend 10-15 minutes with me and would rarely ask any questions related to holistic health.
We found out that one of the biggest factors contributing to my digestive issues is SIBO – small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. Without going into too much details, I’ve cut out many inflammatory foods (gluten, dairy, soy) and have undergone a couple of herbal protocols and I am starting to feel so much better!
Digestive issues are complicated and unfortunately there is no cure that fits all. Though my journey to full recovery is long, I feel much more knowledgeable on how to tackle these issues and I am so grateful to work with someone who finally gets it.
Akansha is the beautiful face behind the blog and social media accounts Citrus & Gold. Her blog is influenced by her South Asian culture which puts a unique spin on delicious recipes, natural medicine and physical fitness. Akansha strives for a balanced state of health and mind and wants to share that with all of her clients and followers. When she isn’t blogging, you can find her teaching Pilates and eating good food in San Francisco. Head over to her Instagram and blog for delicious recipes and workout tips!