World Digestive Health Day: Advances In Gastrointestinal Treatment

World Digestive Health Day: Advances In Gastrointestinal Treatment
29 May 2024
8 mins
Table Of Content
World Digestive Health Day: Advances In Gastrointestinal Treatment

    The food that we consume every day travels through a long digestive journey to become the energy our body needs to function. You might wonder at the supremacy of the gut, yet we often forget to take care of it, despite its crucial role in meeting our body's needs. For this reason, World Digestive Health Day is celebrated to raise awareness about the significance of digestive health worldwide.


    What we eat is what we are!


    What is digestion?


    Digestion is a sequence of events that takes place in our body to break down the food we eat into valuable nutrients. These nutrients can be used for growth, energy, and cell repair mechanisms. The food particles that are broken down are then absorbed by the blood and carried into the cells for function throughout our body.


    What is the World Digestive Health Day?


    World Digestive Health Day is celebrated on 29 May every year to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the World Gastroenterology Organisation. It is a day to create and raise awareness about the importance of digestive health worldwide. 


    The theme for World Digestive Health Day 2024 is "Your Digestive Health: Make It A Priority," which emphasizes the importance of prioritizing digestive health in our daily lives. 


    Why is digestive health important?


    Digestion health is crucial to maintain the overall health of the individuals. An impaired digestive system can trigger many problems in our body. Starting from mild stomach upset to a life-threatening risk of cancer. Digestive problems can relate to a number of health issues, such as fatigue, obesity, and food allergies in individuals. Moreover, the disturbance in the gut microbiome can lead to several chronic diseases like inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, and cancer.


    What are the symptoms of unhealthy gut


    Some of the common symptoms of an unhealthy gut are given below:


    • Stomach pain: Individuals may experience unusual stomach pain that can't be reduced over a period of time.
    • Vomiting: The patient may experience a feeling of forceful throw-up of the stomach content.
    • Diarrhea: Individuals may experience a loose or watery stool during the bowel movement.
    • Constipation: Patients may experience difficulty in passing the stool.
    • Bloating and cramps: Patients may experience abdominal pain due to the excessive accumulation of stomach gas.
    • Blood in stools: Individuals may experience blood in stool due to the gastrointestinal tract bleeding.
    • Poor appetite: Patients may experience a loss of appetite or have a lack of interest in eating the food.
    • Trouble swallowing: Individuals may experience trouble or difficulty in swallowing food or liquids.
    • Weight loss or poor growth: Individuals may experience an unusual weight loss or poor growth (in children) due to the loss of appetite.

    Gut Enemies: 9 Common Gastrointestinal Disorders Unmasked


    Some of the most common gastrointestinal disorders which can affect our gut health are given below:


    1. Coeliac disease: It is an autoimmune disorder in which our own immune system attacks the tissues in the small intestine when we eat a gluten rich food.
    2. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a long-term condition in which the patients may experience abdominal pain or discomfort with altered bowel habits.
    3. Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD): It is a range of stomach conditions, which includes Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis as a common type.
    4. Constipation: Constipation is a condition in which the patients may experience a less bowel movement (3 or less than three bowel movements per week).
    5. Bowel Control Problems (Fecal Incontinence): It is also known as accidental bowel leakage, which leads to the uncontrolled leakage of solid or liquid stool from the bowel.
    6. Diarrhea: It is a common condition in which an individual may experience loose or watery stools, three or more times a day.
    7. Diverticulosis & Diverticulitis: It is the development of small, bulging pouches in the digestive tract of the individuals.
    8. Acid Reflux (GER & GERD): Gastroesophageal reflux is a condition in which stomach acid moves backward from the stomach to the esophagus (food pipe) of the patients.
    9. Gastrointestinal cancer: It is an uncontrolled growth of cells in the digestive tract and other parts of the digestive system.


    5 Advancement in gastrointestinal treatment


    People are often unaware of the chronic gastrointestinal disorder (GI cancer), which leads to an increase in the mortality rate due to the spread or prognosis of the disease. To reduce these, Gastroenterology has gone through a paradigmatic shift towards the treatment plans. Some of the advancements in the gastrointestinal treatment are given below:


    1. Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy is an extremely crucial breakthrough in gastrointestinal malignancies. Immunotherapy methods like checkpoint inhibitors, chimeric antigen receptor T cell therapies, and tumor vaccines have shown promising output against gastrointestinal cancer. 

    2. Nanotechnology: Combining an evolving technology like nanotechnology with immunotherapy can help to reduce the toxicity and increase the efficacy of immunotherapy medicines.

    3. Faecal Microbiota Transplantation (FMT): It involves the administration of a fecal solution from the healthy donors to reduce and treat the recurrent Clostridium difficile infection by adding healthy bacteria into the recipient's intestines. It also helps to treat gastrointestinal diseases like IBD, hepatic steatosis, and encephalopathy.
    4. Minimal invasive surgery: Minimally invasive techniques, such as laparoscopy and robotic-assisted surgery, can help to treat gastrointestinal cancer patients with a small incision, which aids in faster recovery and reduces postoperative pain.


    5 Pro-Tips for gut health


    Here are the five health tips for maintaining the health of the gut:


    • Reduce stress for a healthy gut
    • Quit-smoking
    • Eat a proper diet
    • Maintain a healthy weight
    • Avoid alcohol consumption.




    Digestive health plays a major part in our overall health and when we forget to take care of it, it might lead to several health disorders which not only affect your gut but also affect your overall health. Research and development in the field of gastroenterology can also aid in improving the patients who else are suffering from gastrointestinal problems. On this World Digestive Health Day 2024, let's take an oath to make our gut happy and healthy.

    Written by
    Ishwarya RMasters in Biochemistry
    AboutIshwary R is a Medical Content Writer at MrMed. She completed her PG from the University of Madras, Chennai. She did her final year project in CSIR-CLRI, Adyar, entitled Studies on production of Biosurfactant by bacillus subtilis using Leather industry bioproduct. She did her offline internship and learned clinical Laboratory skills in Billroth hospital and her online internship in SS Healthcare. She strengthened her skills in research, writing, editing, and proofreading medical content, blogs, and scientific articles.
    Tags :World digestive Health DayWorld Digestive Health Day 2024