Categories Digestive Disorders

Can a Chiropractor Help Improve Gut Health?

Do you feel bloated after each meal? Do you feel that it takes a really long time until you feel your stomach light and empty? Unfortunately, you are one of the very many people suffering from gut problems. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, up to 70 million people suffer from digestive problems. This is partly due to the modern lifestyle, leaving people little time to eat healthy food at leisure. The good news is that you can improve digestive health by seeing a chiropractor.

What Is the Connection between Chiropractic and Gut Health?

The average person knows what chiropractors do. They apply various manipulations to straighten misaligned joints and resolve subluxations of the spine. However, you may wonder: what has my spine got to do with my digestive problems?

The answer is a lot. Your entire body works properly under the command of a single organ: the brain. And the brain uses the nervous system to send signals to each organ and system so that it performs its job properly.

Whenever a signal cannot reach an organ, the person experiences a type of discomfort or a negative symptom. As it happens, the nerves that control your digestive system are located in the middle of your spine. Thus, your gut problem can likely be caused by a subluxation of the spine.

This is why you should see a chiropractor if you want to improve digestive health.

How Spine Subluxation Affects Digestive Health

Now, let us see exactly what happens when two vertebrae in your spine become misaligned. This issue is usually caused by sudden trauma (car crash, slip, and fall, sports injury) or by intense wear and tear if you are doing physical work (such as lifting weights). 

When the vertebrae are no longer perfectly aligned, a nerve can get pinched between them. Alternatively, the disc between the vertebrae bulges out and puts pressure on the nerve. The result is that the signals from the brain no longer pass freely through the nerve to your stomach and gut.

Ways in Which Chiropractic Can Improve Digestive Health

The chiropractor will start by giving you a full physical examination. You will also be asked to detail your medical history, including:

Preexisting conditions


Medication you are taking

Medical history of your family.

The chiropractor will identify the cause of your gut health problems and create a personalized treatment plan, involving:

1. Adjustments to Resolve Spine Misalignments

One of the most frequent techniques to improve digestive health is using a series of manipulations that will encourage the vertebrae to return to their natural position. The chiropractor can identify the precise area where the spine is misaligned and correct this problem.

2. Correct Your Posture

Poor digestion and bloating can also be caused by poor posture. When you are not sitting, standing, and walking in a natural position, your muscles are tense, and your ribcage may actually put pressure on your stomach.  Chiropractic treatment will aim to teach you how to maintain a correct posture through exercises meant to strengthen your back muscles.

3. Resolve Hiatal Hernia

Chiropractic manipulations are useful in treating hiatal hernia – a condition in which the stomach pushes upward through the diaphragm. In this case, the chiropractor’s adjustments will encourage your stomach to return to its natural position in the pelvic cavity.

4. Encourage You to Change Your Lifestyle

Finally, a chiropractor can help improve digestive health by showing you how to eat nutritious food, exercise, and give up unhealthy habits. Every choice you make has an impact on your entire body. And in time, these choices can cause you various health issues, from mental health problems (depression, fatigue) to gut problems and heart conditions.

When you decide to improve your digestive health, you will also improve your overall quality of life. We encourage you to call our clinic and book an appointment with one of our experienced chiropractors!

Categories Digestive Disorders

Acid Reflux Treatments

I want to talk to you a little bit about acid reflux, also called heartburn or GERD. 60 million Americans suffer regularly with heartburn, so it is obviously a major problem in the United States. Usually, the symptoms include acid in the stomach coming back up into the esophagus – sometimes after you eat, sometimes on an empty stomach. Oftentimes it seems to be worse when people lay down, probably because now you take gravity out of play, causing the acid to come back up. A lot of the over-the-counter medications, like antacids, will mask the problem on a temporary basis. Recently, there has been a lot of information coming out concerning these prescribed medications and how they can cause serious issues down the road. Sometimes the treatment is actually worse than the condition.

Where does this acid reflux come from? What happens is that your body is producing too much acid to digest the food, or after the food has already been gone out of the stomach, it continues to produce acid, which comes back up into the esophagus. The nervous system controls your digestive processes, all of them. It controls how much acid is produced. What we have found is that there could be a bone just slightly out of position, affecting the nerves that go to the stomach that controls how much acid is actually produced. A lot of our patients come in for a wide range of conditions, but I would say probably 30-40% of my patients, when asked, have some degree of heartburn or reflux. We have found that by correcting the bone that is out of alignment, typically in the upper part of the neck, that suddenly, they come in and they start to report that the reflux has improved, oftentimes disappearing completely. They say, “Well, I only came in here because I had headaches or neck pain or sleep problems.” However, it just so happens that in the process of clearing up the neck pain, headaches, and sleep problems, that suddenly, the digestion has improved as well.

I want you to know that taking a medication is never going to fix your heartburn, or acid reflux, because the cause of your digestive problem, whatever it may be, has never been a drug deficiency. Does that make sense? Taking medications will never fix it. It might mask it temporarily, but if this reflux continues, a lot of times what will happen is the esophagus will start to constrict. The acid changes its consistency and makes it shrink. People often must go in and have some sort of an operative procedure to stretch out that esophagus so food can down.

The long-term effects of this continual reflux can be a problem. I would suggest you try a natural treatment for acid reflux, which is upper cervical care, to see if there is a problem, or a bone out of alignment, in your neck. You do not even have to have any neck pain. What we are concerned about is pressure on the brainstem, which comes down out of the brain, through the top two bones in the neck. The brainstem does not have any pain perception, so you can have a bone out of alignment at the top of the neck and have no neck pain, but it could be severely choking off the nerve supply to your digestive system, creating symptoms such as acid reflux. It could be even creating lower digestive problems as well, including constipation, diarrhea, and irritable bowel.

Categories Digestive Disorders

Upper Cervical Chiropractic for Digestive Disorders

We were surprised to see a recent study that came out which showed that 74% of Americans have some sort of digestive problem including digestive discomfort, reflux, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation, irritable bowel, colitis, diverticulitis, and Crohn’s disease. This surprised me. 74%, that’s three out of every four people in the United States, have digestive issues. That’s over 70 million people just in the US. That’s crazy!

    Let’s talk about that for a minute. We’ve had people come here from all over the world to get help for digestive problems. Think about this: Why is it that two people can live in the same house, eat the same food, but yet one has digestive issues, and one does not? One has heartburn, one doesn’t. One gets constipated, one doesn’t. They live in the same environment, have the same stress factors, while ingesting the same food, but yet one body reacts completely different than the other body. What is the variable? What is different? They are eating the same food in the same environment, so what’s different? Well, first of all we’re dealing with two different bodies, so obviously there’s something going on, not with the food, but the person.

    What could be the variable? Well, do stomachs pretty much all look the same? Do livers pretty much look the same? Colons look the same. The organs themselves are designed the same, so what’s the variable? What could be the difference? The only difference is what controls the stomach. What produces the acid in the stomach? What causes the colon to move at a certain rate? What causes your digestive system to absorb vitamins, to remove the fluid, to do every process that happens throughout the whole course from ingestion to elimination, is controlled by one thing: the nervous system. The nervous system is the only variable. 

    My nervous system is different from your nervous system. Now, if you have two people living in the same household, they eat the same food, live in the same environment with the same stressors, then the only variable is the nervous systems producing a different result in one to the other. What could cause that? Well, if the nervous system’s functioning as it’s supposed to be, 100% mental impulse from the brain to the stomach, the gall bladder, the liver, the small intestine, the large intestine, all the way through the whole entire digestive process, if all the messages get there at 100%, then your body works by design. If you produce the proper amount of acid and your digestion happens at the proper rate, and you absorb the proper fluid, and everything moves as it’s supposed to, you get all the nutrients you should out of your food. 

    But if there’s something wrong, and something’s interfering with the nervous system to any one section of the digestive system, then the whole process starts to work abnormally. It starts to malfunction, and you start to develop digestive symptoms as a result. We have found at The Upper Cervical Spine Center that there is one place, only one place, you can have that can interfere with the messages from your brain to any one or multiple parts of your digestive system which can interfere with your digestion. If we can find it, and if you have a problem and if we can remove it, then all of a sudden you get 100% of the proper messages from your brain to your stomach, your kidneys, your gall bladder, your liver, your small intestine, so things start to work normal again, and they start to function as they were designed to, maybe as they used to do in your case. 

    I hope that we can agree that there’s not a single digestive issue ever that were the result of a drug deficiency. Taking a Prevacid or a Nexium or even a Pepto-Bismol is not going to fix your digestive problem…it never will. It just masks it temporarily, while at the same time it could potentially be creating a bigger problem down the road. Taking the medication, although it may give you some temporary relief, will not ever fix anything. In order to fix it, the problem is something on the inside of you that has created it. If we can find that cause, correct the cause, remove the cause, then things can start to work as intended, and they can actually heal naturally on their own.