Why Stomach Health Is It Important?
Colon Polyps And Cancer
Irritable Bowel Syndrome(IBS)
• Prof. Ethem TANKURT, MD
• Abdullah OKAN, MD
• Bülent ŞENGÜL, MD
WHY STOMACH HEALTH IS IT IMPORTANT?
Healthy eating is one of the basic rules of maintaining a healthy life. Humans just like other living beings must be fed to sustain their lives and to grow from the first moment when they were born. Digestive system plays the leading role in this vital incident called "nutrition". Digestive system is a long way from mouth to anus. Teeth in oral cavity, salivary glands and tongue are the organs where feeding is started. Here properties of food such as hot – cold, bitter-sour – sweet – salty is determined and it is decided whether they will be taken into the body or not. Therefore, heating or cooling procedure is applied to the food in mouth cavity and it allowed whether they will go into the stomach. There are some substances called enzymes and antibodies in salivary secretion. Thanks to these substances, foods are tried to be refined from microbes with saliva secretion. Solid and oversized foods are broken down with the help of teeth and are softened by wetting with the help of saliva and in this way, they are made optimized for sending them from esophagus to stomach. If there is something wrong in the taste and smell of the food taken into the mouth, its intake to the body is not allowed by way of taking it out. As seen, mouth cavity works as preparatory and quality control centre in nutrition activity. After being subjected to several evaluations and procedures in the mouth, the food seen fit for taking into the body is transferred to the stomach via esophagus.
For a healthy stomach, mouth health should be good also. Our stomach is in abdominal cavity and comes before small intestines. While empty, it is volume is small; however, when it is filled with the foods, it is an organ expanding gradually and reaching a few liters of volume. Extreme hot or extreme cold food intake, ingesting the foods quickly without chewing them thoroughly in the mouth, virtually filling the stomach choke full with the goods more than needed, consuming excessive bitter-spicy-sour food is the factors threatening the stomach health. Going to the bed after meals, compressing the stomach by bending forwardly, taking the stomach under pressure with narrow clothes (corset-belt-band) affect the health of stomach adversely. For this reason, dinner meals should not be eaten at late hours and we should give time to working and discharging of the stomach up to 3 hours before going to bed.
However, the factors threatening the stomach health are not limited to these: Strong painkillers, aspirin-derived medicines, strong antibiotics, alcohol, smoking (tobacco), acidic and carbonated drinks have a major role in this regard. Microorganism known for more than 30 years in medical literature but gaining more known status gradually in recent times (Stomach bacteria- Helicobacter Pylori) are among the important factors threatening the health of the stomach.
Here it is necessary to mention a common mistake among the people. When painkiller is administered in needle form or taken in suppository form from anus, there is a common belief that the stomach will not get hurt from this. This is partly a false belief because when painkiller is taken to the body (whichever it is taken), it spreads to whole body by being mixed in to the blood. It comes to the stomach with the blood and it damages the stomach with some changes made on the stomach wall. However, when taken orally, it is possible to affect and damage the stomach wall locally after the tablet is melted in the stomach. Alcohol, local toxic way and smoking may harm the stomach wall by arriving with blood circulation of some harmful substances they incorporate. (just like in painkiller drugs).
Effect of stress on the stomach
Stress is a case causing a wide range of problems in our body via emitted hormones and mediators. The first things that come to the mind are high blood pressure, high sugar, palpitations and increase of stomach acid generation. Increase of stomach acid generation is a condition adversely affecting the health of the stomach wall. For this reason, avoiding long term stress and tensions is highly important in terms of our health.
If one of the fundamental conditions of a healthy life is a healthy nutrition, we can bring our nutrition to quality level by taking care of the health of our stomach. The issue mentioned as a healthy diet here is not a balanced diet in terms of meat, carbohydrate, oil and vitamins. This issue is the topic of metabolism specialists and dieticians. Here what we mention by saying a healthy diet is consuming healthy foods and absorbing the taken food in the healthiest way in our body. Health of stomach has a significant role in sustaining a healthy digestion.