Greetings beautiful people of Columbus.
This week’s word is the microbiome. Also known as our gut flora, it’s a fancy-pants name given to the collection of super tiny organisms that live within and on us. Yes, you read that correctly: ON us! These organisms include bacteria, fungi, and a class of single-celled, nucleus-free organisms.
At first glance, it sounds kind of gross. After all, we are taught to think bacteria is a bad thing with all the anti-bacterial soap and anti-bacterial medicine given to attempt to cure infections. It’s enough to make a reasonable person think that any bacteria (or fungus) is bad for us and needs to be eliminated. But this couldn’t be further from the truth!
If we could get rid of all the bacteria, fungi, and other microscopic cells that comprise our microbiome we would die almost immediately. We are dependent on them! As they are on us. They are vital in several physiological functions such as digestion, brain function, and immunity. Let me repeat that last one: our gut floral is vital to our immunity.
We are now coming to the realization that our ability to maintain health and fight infections and sickness is dependent on a rich and healthy microbiome. That is why doctors are starting to be more judicious when it comes to prescribing antibiotics: antibiotics kill all bacteria, not just the bad ones. So taking a round of antibiotics is necessarily going to reduce your gut flora, which can compromise your immunity…not the outcome anyone wants.
The power of the microbiome isn’t just for digestion and immunity. We now have evidence that it is somehow linked to the control of obesity. (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-gut-bacteria-help-make-us-fat-and-thin/) Researchers took a group of obese mice and a group of skinny mice and swapped their gut flora. The result? The skinny mice got fat and the fat mice got skinny. The only change was the gut flora.
Perhaps it’s time for you to investigate the health of your insides to see what could be blocking your health goals.
Dr. Kevin Sarich and his team offer many complimentary workshops on gut health and specific protocols to help you take charge of your microbiome. If you have any interest in our next “Clean Gut” Workshop call 614-319-3327.