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Functional Endocrinology: Gastrointestinal Impairments

Do you feel the following:

  • Feeling those bowels do not empty completely
  • Lower abdominal pain relieved by passing stool or gas
  • Alternating constipation and diarrhea
  • A hard, dry, or small stool
  • Use laxatives frequently
If you are experiencing any of these situations, then you must be experiencing gastrointestinal impairments in your body.

Gastrointestinal Impairments

Woman touching stomach painful suffering from stomachache causes of menstruation period, gastric ulcer, appendicitis or gastrointestinal system desease. Healthcare and health insurance concept

The digestive system is consisting of the gastrointestinal tract, which is home to the intestines, the liver, the colon, the gallbladder, the pancreas, and the stomach. When there is a disruption in the gastrointestinal tract, it can cause inflammation and chronic illnesses that can harm the body. Functional disorders in the digestive tract (GI tract) can look normal in the body, but it doesn't work correctly.

Many factors can upset the GI tract and its motility, including:
  • Eating a diet low in fiber
  • Not getting enough exercise
  • Traveling or changes in a routine
  • Eating large amounts of dairy blankets
  • Stress
  • Resisting the urge to have a bowel movement
  • Overusing laxatives
  • Taking certain medicines
Some of the most common problems that can affect the GI tract are constipation, IBS, and colon cancer.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) is a long term gastrointestinal disorder. It can cause abdominal pain, bloating, mucus in the stool, irregular bowel habits, and can alternate diarrhea and constipation. IBS can cause persistent discomfort to individuals, but they can improve the symptoms over time as they learn to manage the condition.


Some of the symptoms caused by IBS are:
  • Changes in bowel habits
  • Abdominal pain and cramping that lessens after using the bathroom
  • A feeling that the bowels not fully emptied after using the bathroom
  • Excess gas
  • The passing of mucus from the rectum
  • The sudden urgent need to use the bathroom
  • Swelling or bloating from the abdomen.
Signs and symptoms of IBS can vary between individuals and can often resemble other diseases and conditions. IBS symptoms can often get worst after earing, and a flare-up may last about 2 to 4 days, then the symptoms may either improve or go away entirely, but IBS symptoms can affect different body parts.

These can include:
  • Frequent urination
  • Bad breath
  • Headaches
  • Joint or muscle pain
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Depression


Constipation is one of the most common digestive problems that affects around 2.5 million individuals. It is a syndrome that is defined by bowel symptoms (painful or infrequent passage of stool, the hardness of stool, or a feeling of incomplete evacuation) that may occur either in isolation or secondary to another underlying disease like for example, Parkinson's disease.


The cause of constipation is through the colon. The colon's main job is to absorb water from leftover food as it passes through the digestive system and creates waste. When the waste is ready to be excreted out, the colon's muscles propel the waste out through the rectum to eliminate from the body. If the debris remains in the colon for too long, though, it can be tough and challenging to excrete it out of the body.

Some factors can cause constipation; this can include:
  • Stress
  • Low-fiber diet
  • Lack of exercise
  • Certain medications
  • Particular diseases like a stroke, Parkinson's disease, and diabetes
  • Problems with the colon or rectum
  • Hormonal issues
Everyone's definition of a regular bowel movement may be different. Some people can go about three times a day, while others can go to relieve themselves about three times a week. Some of the symptoms of constipation included are:
  • Fewer than three bowel movements a week
  • Passing hard, dry stools
  • Straining or pain during bowel movements
  • Still feeling full after a bowel movement
  • Experiencing a rectal blockage

Colon Cancer

Colon cancer is the third most common type of cancer. When tumorous growths develop in the large intestine or the colon, it develops colon cancer in the GI tract. The colon, the one organ where the body draws out water and salt from solid wastes. The waste then moves through the rectum and excretes out of the body through the anus.


Even though colon cancer doesn't cause any symptoms in the earliest stages, but it can become more noticeable as the disease progresses. Some of the sign and symptoms of colon cancer include:
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Changes in stool consistency
  • Loose, narrow stools
  • Blood in the stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Iron deficiency
If colon cancer spreads to a new location the gastrointestinal system, it can cause additional problems in the new area.


Having gastrointestinal impairments can cause the body to develop chronic illnesses. There are ways to make sure that the digestive tract is functioning correctly. An individual can change their diets and lifestyle and can make sure that their gut is working properly. When there is a disruption in the GI tract like IBS, constipation, and colon cancer, it can lead to many health problems if the individual is not careful. If an individual prolongs the symptoms, then they will develop life-long issues for their body. Some products help support the intestinal tract and help strengthens the natural defenses and support the intestinal immune function.

October is Chiropractic Health Month. To learn more about it, check out Governor Abbott’s declaration on our website to get full details on this historic moment.

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal and nervous health issues as well as functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health protocols to treat injuries or chronic disorders of the musculoskeletal system. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .


Bharucha, Adil E, et al. “American Gastroenterological Association Technical Review on Constipation.” Gastroenterology, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Jan. 2013,

Brazier, Yvette. “Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): Symptoms, Diet, Causes, and Treatment.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 18 Dec. 2017,

Crosta, Peter. “Colon Cancer: Symptoms, Treatment, and Causes.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 28 Aug. 2019,

Sethi, Saurabh. “What You Should Know About Constipation.” Healthline, 23 Aug. 2019,

Unknown, Unknown. “Digestive Disorders & Gastrointestinal Diseases.” Cleveland Clinic, 2017,

Whitfield, K Lynette, and Robert J Shulman. “Treatment Options for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders: from Empiric to Complementary Approaches.” Pediatric Annals, U.S. National Library of Medicine, May 2009,

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The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to contact us. Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN* email: phone: 915-850-0900 Licensed in: Texas & New Mexico*