Functional Nutrition Blog

Focusing on gut health and Functional nutrition

Stool Testing: 3 Changes You’ll Learn How To Make For YOUR Gut!

Nov 15, 2021 | Autoimmune Disease, Gut Health

Today I’m going to be talking to you about stool sample testing.  I want to share with you three things that you can turn around and do or change in your everyday life. Once you have some sort of answer, response, or understanding about what’s happening in your gut after you get some gut testing done.

When I say gut testing, what I’m talking about is a functional stool test. So you send in your stool, the lab runs through a bunch of different details that you can refer to if you would like. You end up with a bunch of nonsense that you’ll never understand if you don’t know what you’re looking at. But you work with an expert in the field to interpret these results and help you understand. How do I connect the dots between what the hell this stuff is telling me and the way that I’m feeling?  Once I connect those dots, what can I do to bring about some sort of change? So I’m going to go through three. Now there are tons of things, but these are just three things that are going to give you an idea of exactly how you might be doing something now, Gain some more information and be able to change it.

How Is Your Digestion?

So one of the funniest things that we learn from these tests is which of you are and are not chewing your food.
The number of conversations that I have with full-grown adults, myself included, about chewing your food is pretty hysterical. When we get the stool sample results back, we are able to see if there are undigested pieces of meat, undigested vegetable fibers.  Although that is a part of a potentially bigger problem, the very first thing that we have to talk about is chewing. So that’s one thing that with or without a stool sample test, you can think about for yourselves today.   Am I chewing my food?  What does that mean?

Because you’re going to tell me of course I’m chewing my food,  what kind of animal do you think I am?  Really take some time, the next time you have a meal to think about how well am I chewing my food.  See if you can chew your food until it’s almost liquid before you swallow it.  And do that for all of your meals for a few days in a row and see if that brings you any sort of change. You can judge that change by the way that you feel physically, maybe the bloating feels differently.   Maybe you feel like things are moving through your system a little better. Or you can actually look at your stool and see fewer chunks of undigested food? Or is there no change that could be feedback as well. So chewing your food, we get a lot of feedback about that.

Digestive Enzymes In Your Gut

The second thing is understanding how well your digestive enzymes are playing a role. What does that even mean to you because it sounds a little jargony?  What that means is you may be chewing your food beautifully, perfectly liquid before you swallow every time and you still see undigested pieces of food.  You’re still having symptoms and a hard time. This might be because your body is not triggering the appropriate digestive enzymes.

So quick lesson here, you chew your food, it goes down the esophagus into the stomach when it leaves the stomach and enters the small intestine, the pancreas, the liver and the gallbladder release different types of digestive properties into the beginning part of the small intestine.

That’s where the majority of your food is broken down and absorbed. So it starts in the mouth. But a huge part of it happens in the small intestine. If that piece is interrupted for any number of reasons, you’re going to have a hard time.  But it’s enough to tell you that you might benefit from something called a digestive enzyme or digestive bitters.

Tip. I would not get one that includes hydrochloric acid  ( HCL) or betaine
unless you have appropriate testing, and somebody helping you understand that particular piece. if you’re just playing around with it on your own, I would make sure that you do not get an enzyme that includes that. For now, you can play around with digestive enzymes. However, once you have the results of some stool testing, you’re going to understand exactly where the bridge is out, so to speak.


Not Everyone Is The Same

So are you having a hard time digesting fats? Are you having a hard time digesting everything in general, we can choose digestive enzymes that help you feel better, while we work on the root cause of the problem, that is really tailored to what you need. So we can get ones that are really high in fat, digestion aid, or really high in protein.  That’s going to be helpful in digesting proteins, etc. You also can just take a look at a sort of a broad, everything is kind of dull when you’re digesting. Let’s just brighten it all up. There are ways to do that, too.  The testing helps you understand if this is something that you need to worry about. And if you need to worry about it, how to make it the most personalized, ideal intervention to bring you and your gut your symptoms, your experience, the most relief in the fastest way.

How Probiotics Affect Your Gut

The third thing that I want to mention, and this is going to hit home for a lot of you, is probiotic use.
Should you be taking a probiotic, what type of probiotic should you be doing other things in tandem with taking a probiotic? The answer is almost always yes, by the way.
So many of you are taking probiotics, and you either feel worse, or you don’t feel any change at all.   I want to say two things about that.

  • One. It’s not your fault.  If you’re doing something for yourself, that’s supposed to be good. Giving your gut good beneficial bacteria. There’s something admirable about your effort to try to do something really helpful for yourself, it makes so much sense.
  • Two if you’re not feeling better, stop doing that thing. Particularly if you’re feeling worse, there are a lot of people who don’t tolerate probiotics, because their gut is already suffering from being either in a totally dysbiotic state, meaning the levels of beneficial and bad or opportunistic bacteria are just totally all over the place. Or you’ve just simply got an overgrowth of bacteria, good or bad, by the way.

Are You Taking The Right Probiotic For You?

So if you’re taking a probiotic, and you’re thinking like, damn, yes, okay, I was wondering why I wasn’t feeling any better. Or I was wondering why I actually feel worse, when I take this, stop taking it.  Get some testing done for yourself and get a really solid understanding of what it is that your gut needs. Maybe it’s not that the probiotic, in general, but you just need a different kind.  Or you need one that does a particularly different type of job, or you need it in tandem with something else. Probiotics don’t just recolonize the gut, you have to take them continually to continue to experience benefits.

And at the same time, you have to be dealing with the other factors that are going to actually bring about that long-term change that the probiotics help you feel while you’re taking them. So it’s a really complicated system. But all of those little details are helped and spelled out to you on your functional stool testing.  It really helps you when you’re side by side with a professional, an expert in the field who understands what you’re looking at.   I’ve been feeling X, Y, and Z, my results are saying ABC, here’s how I’m going to connect them. This is now how I understand what’s going on.

Here are the four or five things that I’m going to change directly in my life to notice a difference in my gut. So I hope that that was super helpful. I have tons of information at on how to get gut testing done for yourself. You can look under either the gut tribe or the gut reset. Let me know if you have any questions. Always cheering for you!

Get Strata’s Newsletter!

Sign up for Strata’s newsletter to receive inspiring, informative assistance on your personal journey to becoming the best functioning human being you can be!

You deserve to understand your body and how to optimize it.

You deserve to be able to navigate food and improve your gut heal without feeling intimidated, overwhelmed, or sick.