Intestine Functions and the Influence of Diet on Our Health: Expert Opinion by Lyudmyla Goncharova

Intestine Functions and the Influence of Diet on Our Health: Expert Opinion by Lyudmyla Goncharova

Hippocrates once said: “Let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food”. 2000 years later, doctors and dietology experts remind us of the importance of proper diet and the connection between diet, digestive tract and psychological state.

What functions does intestine serve? Why malnutrition is dangerous and how the incorrect approach to weight loss can influence mental health? Lyudmyla Goncharova, dietarian, immunologist, genetic scientist and founder of Goncharova Clinic helped us to find the answers to these questions.

Intestine functions: things you need to know

Intestine functions

Intestine ensures absorption of simplified nutrients that are transferred by the blood to all other tissues and cells in the body.

“Intestine is a cradle of products digestion and birth of new active substances. About 20 hormones including serotonin (the happiness hormone) are produced here”, said Lyudmyla.

Neural system of this organ is similar to the hare’s brain, thus it includes many additional cells producing neurotransmitters. It fulfills autonomous functions such as reflex coordination and acts independently form the brain cord and spinal cord. Lyudmyla points to the fact that the functions of such advanced neural system can not be limited with just the digestion regulation.

Expert claims that intestine has a stronger immune system in comparison with the rest of the body.

“70% of our immune system is located in the intestine, and the remaining 30% are controlled by the other organs”, Lyudmyla noted.

Immune system is formed by the microbiota – microorganisms and various bacteria living in the human body. The size of the internal surface of the intestine is believed to be about 30 sq.m., which equals to approximately half of the badminton court.

About the dangers of fasting

About the dangers of fasting

Fasting is the stress even for the fully healthy body. When a person doesn’t consume food, the body satisfies the energy demands by using fat reserves and muscular tissue. The latter is used as a protein source that is necessary for tissue renovation, synthesis of hormones and digestive ferments, as well as other processes.

Lyudmyla points out the following negative consequences of fasting:

  • migraines;
  • increased risk of urarthritis because blood dehydration and increased uric acid level;
  • потеря волос и истончение кожи;
  • vitamin deficiency;
  • gynecomastia – enlargement of men’s lactiferous glands, erectile dysfunction and decreased libido;
  • dehydration – during no-water fasting.

As an alternative, nutritionist offers such solutions:

  • don’t change the diet regime and quality, just increase physical activity and calorie expenditure;
  • don’t decrease the amount but improve the quality of consumed food – DNA test will be perfect for finding the best individual diet.

“Fasting is not for everyone, and it’s ill-advised to undergo the process on your own without consulting and supervision of the doctor”, said Lyudmyla.

How diet can influence health

How diet can influence health

People who have been keeping diet at least once know that it could be really hard to resist the temptation to eat something from the forbidden list. Thus, in some cases, a desire to lose some weight may become fanatical, fueled by fear of gaining pounds again after several months of weight loss. Sometimes people limit themselves in many things, even reject holiday feast and friendly gatherings that are perceived as a lure to eat something.

In such a way, people who are not mentally ready to lose weight become antisocial, malign and even express open aggression. This helps them protect themselves from any situation that features discussions while eating.

Expert thinks that the best way to avoid negative consequences for the mental health is to contact a professional specialist who will supervise your condition during the weight loss. Also it’s important not to condemn yourself for loneliness and “find motivation for adapting to the rules of the game”.

“Never start losing weight drastically without consulting and supervision by the doctor”, said the dieting expert.

Diet as a reason for infertility

Diet as a reason for infertility

Woman’s body requires hormones controlling the reproductive and lactation function. Lyudmyla explains that the damage from fast weight loss can be seen in the appearance and on health:

  • skin elasticity and softness are lost;
  • menstrual period can become irregular;
  • risk of infertility increases.

Moreover, problems with hormones related to fasting may cause an opposite effect – instead of weight loss, person might gain pounds.

When it comes to the period, food refusal may mess it up even to the point of long-term delayed menstruation. In the future, it may lead to fertility problems. But all the damage may be avoided with the rational approach.

“When the body gets used to a certain food intake regime, it processes fats correctly, without keeping reserves on the sides, stomach or knees. It feels harmony – food incomes regularly, hunger is not there, so everything’s OK”, Lyudmyla concluded.


On November 11, Lyudmyla Goncharova will make a presentation at Biohacking Conference Kyiv 2020, telling about healthy diet, DNA tests for discovering food digestion parameters, and will also answer questions of the event guests.

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