The use of non-natural sweeteners, interchangeably known as artificial or intense sweeteners, is broad both geographically and in terms of the multitude of ingested substances they are incorporated in. Characterised as low caloric additives that act as sugar substitutes in predominantly ‘low-energy’ or ‘low sugar’ foods and drinks, their extensive and increasing use in recent decades is attributed to the increased prevalence of obesity and metabolic pathologies and consequent shift towards low carbohydrate/low sugar dietary patterns.
The keto diet is characterised by a high intake of fat, adequate protein and a very low intake of carbohydrate.[1,5] While there are variations on the ratio of macronutrients, the standard ketogenic diet contains approximately 80% fat, 15% protein and 5% carbohydrates.6 Typically, carbohydrates are reduced to less than 50 grams a day in order to allow the body to utilise fat instead of glucose as its main source of energy.
The importance of a healthy digestive system has long been recognised by complementary health professionals including naturopaths and herbalists. This concept is not new however, with Hippocrates, regarded as the father of medicine, reportedly stating that “all disease begins in the gut” over 2000 years ago.
Childhood encompasses a period of immense growth, not just physically, but emotionally and mentally as well. The developing nervous system is highly sensitive to external influences, and while some children adapt to these influences or stressors, other children do not adapt so easily. Accordingly, anxiety, irritability, hyperactivity, sleep disturbances and changes to mood may develop in children.
As thyroid dysfunction continues to rise, so too does the number of patients presenting with partial or complete removal of the thyroid gland - how do we support this naturopathically?
Research continues to draw links between a healthy gut flora, overall health and the role diet and environment have to play in influencing gut flora diversity and numbers.1
Partially hydrolysed guar gum (PHGG) is a prebiotic fibre that has been shown to enhance bifidobacterium and lactobacilli species as well as short chain fatty acids in the colon.