SIBO – Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth 

SIBO – Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth is an under diagnosed condition. Our gut has healthy probiotics (bacteria) in certain places. Sometimes, due to some reasons mentioned below, different bacteria are able to grow in places they shouldn’t be in. Its important to note, it is NOT a true infection, however, we treat it like one. It is simply an over population of bacteria (some more harmful than others) in the small intestine.

The reason why its under diagnosed, is because its very similar to IBS. Did you know that up to 85% of IBS cases is due to SIBO? Many medical professionals simply give up and say its a syndrome / its genetic / food intolerances etc. SIBO can be mild or severe, it really depends how far you let it go and what kind of bacteria is responsible for your SIBO. For most patients, it severely impacts their quality of life. 

Small Intestinal Baterial overgrowth causing gas and bloating


Digestive symptoms of SIBO:

IBS – like symptoms such as, gas (belching / flatulence), stomach pain, bloating, diarrhea / severe constipation or both, heartburn / acid-reflux, malabsorption, malnutrition and in extreme cases, weight loss.

SIBO impacts not only quality of life, but so much more. The role of the small intestine is to absorb nutrients. The overgrowth interferes with nutrient absorption and thus patients experiencing SIBO also often have nutrient deficiencies such as Vitamin D, K, Iron, B vitamins etc.

SIBO causes inflammation, leaky gut syndrome, and many food sensitivities. We know for a fact that different bacteria in our gut alter our hormones (see blog post on how) therefore, other hormonal imbalances have been associated with SIBO such as acne, PMS and the biggest of all – adrenal fatigue.  SIBO can also cause anxiety, brain fog, poor memory and other neurological conditions.

In order to diagnose the type of SIBO, Dr. Tali often runs breathing tests (the type depends on your symptoms) and stool analysis (optional). Stool analysis testing can tell us much more than SIBO and can be helpful in diagnosing not only SIBO but also Candida, leaky gut, infections, parasites, etc.

Do you have to do the testing? Not always. Its case by case basis. But in order to understand the kind of bacteria and what it is sensitive to, testing is highly recommended.

Get yourself an experienced Naturopathic Doctor who can properly diagnose- Dr. Tali often asks more Important questions to help narrow down SIBO diagnosis as it can be broad spectrum of symptoms. Its important you get someone in your corner who truly understands digestive health, is able to diagnose, test and prescribe proper treatment.


It’s important not only to treat SIBO, but also to understand why this may be happening in the first place. Therefore it’s important to get yourself a Naturopath who is experienced in SIBO treatment and understands the pathophysiology behind your gut health in order to prevent it from reoccurring.

Some of the possible causes Dr. Tali always looks into:

  • Gut motility issues are the most common cause – lets get your gut moving.
  • Hypochlorhydria / low enzymes (which goes into a big umbrella of possibilities)
  • Past antibiotics usage
  • Stress
  • Medications
  • Immunodeficiency syndromes
  • Liver conditions
  • Pancreas conditions
  • Autoimmunity
  • Blood sugar dysregulation (including diabetes)

Sometimes simply just stress, gut microflora imbalance, unhealthy diet, alcohol, and travel may cause SIBO. It can be associated with many different comorbidities.

SIBO Treatment

3 key steps: preparation, weed out the unhealthy gut bacteria, then replenish and balance healthy gut flora. Most forget about healing the gut lining and treating conditions / symptoms associated with SIBO.

Naturopathic treatment for SIBO is actually much cheaper than conventional medicine treatment. Conventional medicine usually uses antibiotics (Rifaximin) that cost roughly about $1,000. There is also more research on SIBO treatment using naturopathic modalities than conventional.

Dr. Tali’s natural treatment approach to SIBO is to always look at the root cause. The treatment is comprehensive and composed of a series of steps to ensure a full resolution and prevention of future rebounds. The treatment takes approximately 6 weeks, and it is a top priority to not only treat SIBO but to address other aspects of your life such as leaky gut, inflammation, adrenal fatigue and other symptoms you may have been experiencing. Remember, individualized treatment is important and you want a licensed experienced health practitioner in your corner in order to treat, prevent and heal. We will consider your past history, medication use, symptoms and other factors in order to individualize the best treatment for you.

Dr. Tali always understands that sometimes you really want to just feel better, to avoid gas and bloating etc. Therefore, your treatment protocol will also include some symptom relief measures to ease your life.

The difference between Dr. Tali`s approach to others is that at the end, an easy simple lifestyle is implemented in order to help heal the gut lining from all the trauma and replenish your friendly gut bacteria. Gut health is a journey, are you ready to feel better from the inside out?