I find it interesting that with such a mantra of ‘heal the gut’ in the natural healthcare world, that few actually get it tested. The gut has functions in digestion, immune function, and an ecosystem of potential bacteria, virus, parasites, and worms. So I had a stool test called the GI MAP from Diagnostic Solutions performed to share with you the possibilities of what may be at the root of your gut issues. But the results of a stool test won’t just give you insights into your belly but a host of dysfunctions that can lead from gut imbalances.
Back in August, I did a month of meat and I felt and functioned great. Then in late September/early October I tried the Fasting Mimicking Diet, which did not go great. Due to the painful bloating from the FMD, I did a stool test to see what could be amiss and give you insight into what your poo can say about you.
Thankfully, my gut was clear of nasty pathogens.
While I wasn’t full of nasty stuff, I don’t have enough of the good guys. I had been off probiotics for a few weeks before doing this. It’s clear I should make that a part of my regular supplementation.
Why could a lack of the good guys be a problem? It creates more opportunity for opportunistic bacteria to come and be squatters in my gut. Certain opportunistic bacteria may initiate autoimmune thyroiditis or inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. These bacteria may trigger or sustain the autoimmune process. Gastrointestinal symptoms are less common when these bacteria are elevated. When intestinal permeability (leaky gut) is present these microbes could escape the lumen of the gut and infect extra-intestinal sites. There is a marker called zonulin that can be added on to assess leakiness. The one in red below is associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
The next section dives into intestinal health. Thankfully, everything was good. From other tests I have had in the past with other companies, something consistent is I should be taking some digestive support on a regular basis (Elastase-1 not as optimal as I would like). Another hinting at the out of range border is b-glucuronidase. This can indicate dysbiosis (bacterial imbalance) or issues in my detox pathways (especially hormone clearance). Again, this is pretty consistent with other tests I have run.
I think the most interesting aspect of this test, at least for me since I wasn’t looking to diagnose something but to establish a baseline, is the section that looks at my genetic capability of handling antibiotics. I had lots of them as a kid and finally at one point, my mom realized I was allergic to them. Penicillin es no bueno for me.
Beta-lactam antibiotics are a class of broad-spectrum antibiotics which includes penicillin derivatives. Macrolide antibiotics include popular ones like erythromycin.
In my hierarchy of functional lab testing, this is near the top, right after organic acids but also dependent on the person’s history and symptoms. Multiple rounds of antibiotics, steroids and NSAIDS, international travel, food reactions, gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and brain fog are some signs and symptoms that you may want to consider this.
Who would the GI MAP be good for?
• Suspected H. pylori Infection
• Fungal or Yeast Infections
• Bacterial & Parasitic Infections
• Intestinal Permeability (leaky gut)
• Viral Pathogens
• Chronic and Acute Gastroenteritis
• IBD-Inflammatory Bowel Disease
• IBS-Irritable Bowel Syndrome
• Autoimmune Disease
Not sure where to start? Start Here.