What Gut Testing Can Tell You

It’s something that we tend to take for granted until there’s a problem, right?  –  our gut health.  We know it’s crucial to our overall wellness, but it seems pretty mysterious.  We can’t see it, we can’t touch it, we can’t smell it… well, we can smell it sometimes.  Gut health has been high on the wellness radar for the last several years, and for good reason.  Researchers have studied and documented the relationship between an unbalanced gut microbiome and gastrointestinal conditions like inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, obesity, and diabetes.

And it’s not just about knowing where the nearest bathroom is located when you’re out in public. Your gut microbiome impacts nearly every other system in the body, including immunity, digestion, and your nervous system. Got acne? It’s likely your gut health.  Struggling with anxiety, depression, or panic attacks?  Check your gut.  Your gut health is so impactful to your overall health because the gut is home to nearly 3 million genes and trillions of bacteria, all of which are unique from person to person and all of which are either beneficial or harmful, depending on what’s actually inside that dark space behind your belly button.

Assessing Your Gut Health

If you suffer from symptoms or diseases caused by inflammation, like obesity or diabetes, or you have chronic poop problems, mood issues like anxiety, or even skin issues like eczema or acne, you may seek answers regarding what you can do to finally fix these problems. A comprehensive gut microbiome test is really informative in cases like these because the test is designed to assess your complete gut health. Gut microbiome tests can inform you what type of bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi are in your gut and how they might affect your body and your health. From a gut microbiome test, you can discover what types of microbes live in your gut and their links to your improved or worsened health outcomes, and actually how to fix your symptoms and repair your gut once and for all!

Our favorite gut microbome test, the Gastrointestinal Microbial Assay Plus, or GI-MAP, is a clinical test that measures gastrointestinal microbiota DNA from a single stool sample.  It checks what’s in your gut based on the DNA of the bacteria and other bugs in your gut!  With innovative, quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) technology, the GI-MAP accurately detects microbes that may be causing your symptoms.  You can learn, with this at-home test, what exactly the root cause of your gut, mood, skin, or digestive problems is and how to correct these imbalances so that you can go on with your life, free of the bathroom sprints, the embarrassing acne, and the anxiety that are so commonly associated.

What is Reported on GI-MAP Test Results?

The GI-MAP can reveal so much about gut health, and from gut health, you can learn a lot about your overall health. In addition to detecting microbes that indicate an imbalance within the gut, the GI-MAP test can also inform you on digestion, absorption, inflammation, and immune function indicators as well as your gut mucosal layer status – aka, whether you have “leaky gut” or not. So, how are these results detected, and what will your GI-MAP results show?

Pathogens – The GI-MAP detects pathogens, including pathogens typically known to induce intestinal gastroenteritis and are often the cause of common gut symptoms like diarrhea, constipation, and bloating. The test can also detect toxins, which are a type of virulence factor created by pathogens, and whether your body is clearing these toxins efficienty or not. 

Helicobacter PyloriHelicobacter Pylori, or H. pylori, can be measured using a GI-MAP test for gut health. H. pylori is contagious – studies have shown that nearly 50% of the world’s population today may harbor H. pylori – and if one person in the house has it, likely they all do.  Although many carriers are asymptomatic, H. pylori is a big risk factor in the onset of chronic gastritis, ulcers, and stomach cancer. 

Normal Bacteria – A gut health test reports beneficial bacteria such as Akkermansia Mucinophila, Bacteroides fragilis, Bifidobacterium, or Clostridia. These types of normal bacteria extract nutrients and energy from our diets, produce vitamins, support gut barrier function, and defend against colonization by potential pathogens.  They’re basically the gatekeepers and you want them to be strong and plentiful to prevent long-term disease.

Overgrowth Microbes – Much of the bacteria gauged on the GI-MAP are classified as opportunistic pathogens. Opportunistic or overgrowth microbes are considered typical in the stool, but at high levels, they can generate gastroenteritis and inflammation in immune-compromised patients.  In healthy people, overgrowth of this group can cause UTIs, autoimmune issues such as rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid problems and if leaky gut is present, they can escape the gut and roam around in the rest of the body, terrorizing other body systems.

Fungi and Yeast – Fungal organisms in the human digestive tract are fairly common and are reported on a GI-MAP test as an indicator of gut health. Fungal overgrowth can cause sickness and disease like Candida overgrowth causing yeast infections, so it’s good to know your yeast status if this is something that is a constant struggle for you.  

Parasites – The GI-MAP tests for pathogenic parasites and protozoa (aka worms!) most commonly occurring in the GI tract.  A parasite is an organism that lives and feeds on a host organism (ick), so discovering parasites within your gut is imperative in bettering your gut health.  You will absolutely know that something is off if you’ve got parasites hanging out inside your gut, the symptoms are undeniable, but you may not know what is causing your symptoms.  This gut test will tell you exactly where the problem lies!

Want to finally stop struggling with gut symptoms and stop wasting time and money on treatments not designed for you? We can help you create a personalized program, including this comprehensive gut health testing, that will greatly improve your gut health and overall wellness. Contact EverVital today!

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