You have 10x the number of microbe cells in you than your own human cells. That means 99% of the genes housed in your body come from microbes. In voting terms, that is a ton of influence on your life. Newsflash! If you can influence the microbes, you have great influence on your entire being.
The microbiome’s role includes detoxification, protection and regulation of other body systems such as hormone and energy distribution networks, the immune system, and the brain, for its cognitive functions. It also provides you nutrients like folates, vitamin K, biotin, riboflavin (B2), cobalamin (B12), and possibly other B vitamins .
Role of a healthy microbiome
Affects how we store fat
Converts food into available nutrients
Works with our immune system
Affects our mood – happy, sad or depressed
Did you know about the human genome project?
Completed in April 2003
In the cells of the human body, there are 26,000 functioning genetic units
In the cells of the human microbiome there are 100 trillion bacteria providing 4 milliondistinct bacterial genetic units.
95% of the bacteria are located in the large intestine
Human physiologic and behavioural complexity increasingly linked to diversity of microbiome
A healthy microbiota includes several families of bacteria. This is like having a county that is dominated by the Smith and Jones families, with some smaller families from the Johnson, Black and Nelson households. In total this region has about 100 trillion residents. You might also like to know that 70% of the residents live in town (the large intestine) and 30% live in the suburbs (other parts of the intestinal tract).
Over all, these families support one another in community and tend to keep each other in check. Just like humans living in their communities. The good ole’ neighbourhood watch keeps an eye on things. If you are from the “Smith” phyla, you have brothers, sisters, parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents. Within your family there are several members with different first names.
There are seven common healthy gastrointestinal microbe strains. For the geeks in the crowd, the bacterial gut microbiome is mostly made of microbes from the families of Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes. There are also members of the Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Fusobacteria, and Verrucomicrobia phyla families, but they are not as abundant . Seventy percent of the families in your microbiome are from the phyla Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, and thirty percent from the families of Proteobacteria, Verrucomicrobia, Actinobacteria, Fusobacteria, and Cyanobacteria .
The exact microbiome composition varies from person to person. 1057 individual types of microbes have been identified and cultured in the human microbiota. Each of us has our own unique combination of about 160 different ones . They are mostly bacteria, but can also include fungi, protozoa and viruses. Think of the microbiome like your finger print. Very unique.
However, there are times when we get visitors we don’t want. Over and above the healthy microbiome, or the residents of the region, there are vagrants that come in and disrupt the natural balance. The variety and balance of gut bacteria is often different in people with chronic inflammatory conditions.
Okay, so there’s three different 70/30 splits we just talked about. Let’s clarify:
70% of your immune is in your gut.
70% of your microbes are in your large intestine
70% of the microbes that exist belong to two out of seven of the phyla or families of bacteria.
Research continues to reveal that there is no single bacterium to blame for a disease but from changes to the entire microbiome. Since 70% or more of our immune system in is our gut, several diseases that result from a microbiome shift are autoimmune in nature. If not kept in check, imbalances can cause issues. Some examples are below.
If you seek a caring professional who is a registered naturopathic doctor in Guelph with a functional medicine approach, you’ve come to the right place. Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND knows how to stimulate your body’s natural mechanisms to repair damage and rebuild health.
The microbiome acts much like any other organ in the body; it takes in nutrients for the purpose of living; conserving and distributing energy. It can repair and rejuvenatewhen it is damaged. When damaged beyond repair it may die off.
The health of your GUT makes deep impacts on the health of your entire body. Growing evidence supports this, When Hippocrates said, it all begins in the gut he was smarter than even he might have imagined. That was about 2450 years ago. Has the human condition ever really changed? Not really, it’s still so very true. Modern science confirms the gut is related to so much.
Common gastrointestinal symptoms
Nausea and vomiting
Abdominal pain, bloating or cramping
Common coexisting mood disorders
Attention Deficit Disorder
Common coexisting conditions related to gut health
Get the bottom of the matter
Do you experience any of these health issues listed above? If you care to get to the bottom of the matter (so to speak), let’s talk. After we review your health concerns in an initial intake appointment, I can drop ship a stool analysis kit directly to you. You can then collect samples in the convenience of your own home. With the prepaid courier pouch, ship them direct from your home to the lab. In about three weeks we will have another appointment where we can discuss your test results. Knowing what’s in your microbiome is a perfect place to start a plan to improve the health of the rest of your body.
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