Registered Dietitian Shares How Listening To Your Body Can Help You Heal Your Gut

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Have you ever gotten butterflies in your stomach, or a deep instinctive feeling in your belly? Those are just two of the ways that your body tries to communicate with you. Your gut, or your gastrointestinal system, is your body’s second brain, and if you pay close attention to it, it can bring your awareness to parts of your body that need your attention. Click to learn how registered dietitian Tori Nelson, changed her life after learning to listen to her body.

If you experience bloating, gas, bowel irregularity, period problems, hormonal imbalance,  acne, or food sensitivities, more likely than not, your gut microbiome needs some TLC. Registered Dietitian Tori Nelson of Tori Nelson Nutrition, learned this the hard way after spending years trying to figure out what was going on with her body and why she was experiencing the symptoms that she was.

While in college she experienced chronic stress and was not sleeping or eating well. Over time, she began developing mouth ulcers, along with constipation, diarrhea, bloating, gas, and other uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms. When it became too much to handle, she consulted her doctor, who told her that she likely had Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), and advised her to follow a low FODMAP diet. 

Her symptoms improved slightly, but she shortly hit a plateau. Nelson went back to her doctor who then told her that she may actually have food intolerances and that IBS was something she would likely have to live with. After much trial and error, Nelson decided to do some research on her own. She discovered that she may have small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, and went back to her doctor and asked to get tested – she was prescribed antibiotics with little improvement. Unfortunately, her symptoms persisted.

“Finally I was like, this is crazy. None of these interventions are working. What is going on with me?” she shares. Over the course of her life, Nelson shares that she had been filling her body with toxins, antibiotics, and overly processed foods, and as she got older, these things finally caught up to her, taking a huge toll on her body. Eventually, Tori ended up in the emergency room where she was diagnosed with Crohn’s, a type of inflammatory bowel disease. “Once I was diagnosed with Crohn’s, that was the ultimate wake-up call for me. I really forced myself to whip it into shape,” she says.

This is when Nelson made it her mission to heal her gut microbiome for good, which are the trillions of bacteria that live along your digestive tract and are directly related to your overall health and well-being. After feeling disconnected from her body for so long, she began to work to improve her gut health by focusing on the food she put into her body, and switching to a more healthy and holistic lifestyle. 

Nelson focused her attention on improving her gut microbiome and is now at a place where she is medication free. She shifted her focus to healing from the inside, and today it has become her passion to help others do the same. With a master’s degree, and additional training in holistic and functional medicine, digestive wellness, and working as an outpatient dietitian, she specializes in treating GI conditions such as IBS, IBD, and SIBO/SIFO. 

“Your body is designed to heal and if we investigate well enough and find where the problem is coming from, we can get to a better place. We take away the things taxing the body, things like inflammatory foods, toxins from our environment, gut dysbiosis, and add in the things we are missing, like vitamins and minerals – then you can truly heal. Oftentimes people think it’s all about cutting things out but it’s just as important to add in what the body might be missing. If we are depleted our bodies simply won’t be able to heal. It needs adequate levels of raw materials, like amino acids and nutrients, to do its job and function well – to do things like creating energy, detox, and repair. Because each individual is unique, we utilize functional lab testing to get a more precise clinical picture of what is going on and where we need to improve.” she says. “You might not have the best day every day, as you know, healing has its ups and downs, but there is light at the end of the tunnel if you stick with it,” she adds.

When it comes to her clients, Nelson makes sure to remind them that their bodies are working for them, versus working against them. Symptoms are how our body communicates, it is trying to tell us something, which is something that she learned throughout her own journey. Through 1-1 counseling, she works to connect the dots and figure out what’s going on with each of her patients to create a structured program that can help them achieve their goals. 

“I ask them right off the bat, what’s going on? When did you last feel well, and what was happening around that time? For some people, they’ve been through an episode of food poisoning, or trauma, and for other people, it’s this gradual build-up of symptoms that just gets worse and worse over the years, and that might be because of antibiotic use, eating a poor diet, stress, toxin exposure, not sleeping well, or gut infections. So I ask them about their symptoms and their lifestyle, and we go back to their childhood. Were they breastfed, were they bottle fed, were they vaginally birthed, or was it via C-section? We go through this deep dive to identify where their symptoms are coming from and how to move forward,” she says.

Having gone through her own experience with IBD, Nelson is able to relate to the way her patients are feeling, “When you are fine for a period of your life and then all of a sudden you have these issues. It’s really hard to deal with that sometimes. You’re like, ‘why me, why did this happen?’ So I’m able to sympathize with my clients. You are going to have good days, and you are going to have bad days. I understand how much it sucks, but we keep going. Keep giving it the best you can and eventually, you will get to a place where these drastic big changes that you’re making, in the beginning, don’t feel so big anymore. You feel proud, and you wake up in the morning feeling good,” she concludes.

If you are experiencing symptoms such as bloating, bowel irregularity, food sensitivities, period problems remember that your body is trying to communicate something with you, and with the help of a leading health coach like Tori Nelson, you can soon live a life where these things won’t hold you back anymore. 

Book a 15-minute Discovery Call with Nelson today and get your health on track!

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