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Lipstick on the Rim: Hot Girls Have Stomach Issues: Everything You Need to Know About Heartburn, IBS, Bloating, Disease Prevention, Inflammation, and More with Gastroenterologist Dr. Ari Nowain


How many times have you had a stomach ache? Or gotten heartburn? Or had discomfort relating to your digestion but couldn’t identify what it is? These are some of the many reasons why we wanted to sit down with gastroenterologist (and Molly’s own) Dr. Ari Nowain to talk all things gastro issues. We get into IBS, acid reflux, heartburn, bloating, and more. We talk about the right time to get a colonoscopy, why inflammation isn’t one-size-fits-all, and the truth about probiotics (you might be surprised by this one). If you’ve had questions about your gut, digestion, or anything pertaining to gastro, this episode is for you.

[Dr. Nowain] On Food Intolerance

“I’m shocked at how people can avoid eating so many things. Honestly, I give credit to our generation, as we’re listening to our bodies more than before. A lot of this comes from food intolerance. We have bloodwork and biopsies that can detect a lot of diseases, but when it comes to intolerances, it’s a lot of trial and error. So what causes inflammation and what upsets your gastrointestinal tract? It’s hard to answer because it’s truly different for everyone. For some people, it’s dairy. For some people, it’s gluten. For everybody, I would argue, it’s processed foods.”

[Dr. Nowain] On Bloating

“Bloating is perhaps the most common thing I see in the office and maybe one of the toughest things to treat because it’s so multifactorial. The very first thing I tell a patient when they tell me that they’re bloated is to describe what they mean. Some people mean they look nine months pregnant. Some people mean that they’re feeling more gassy. I often see patients with bloating treated with probiotics before coming to see me. And I find that a lot of times that makes the situation worse. So one of the first things I do when patients are bloated is tell them to stop the probiotic, especially if it hasn’t worked yet. It can actually instead, promote bloating.  It’s an oversimplification to just introduce 10 strains of good bacteria and presume that that’s going to resolve the problem. Some will need a reset with an antibiotic that’s specific to the gut, others just aren’t getting enough variety in their diet, and some have had infections in the past that they’re still healing from. It’s really case by case.”

[Dr. Nowain] On Polyps

“A polyp is a small growth in the colon. By removing polyps, we’re able to prevent colon cancer. Unfortunately, in the U.S., for patients between the ages of 50 and 75, only about two-thirds of eligible people get screened, so a third of people don’t get screened at all. Polyps, these tiny growths that happen inside of the colon are visible, so when we go in there and see it, we can remove it. The goal is to remove it entirely, so if there are any pre-cancer cells in there, they don’t have an opportunity to grow. This prevents colon cancer. That’s why it’s important to do a colonoscopy, so we can prevent polyps from progressing to cancer.”

Dr. Nowain’s Must-Haves:

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