There are approximately 100 trillion microbes in our bodies – 500 to 1,000 different species of them in every human. They make up to 3 to 5 kilograms of our total body weight. Most of them live in the colon, the location of 70% of our immune system activity; billions of others live in the mouth, lungs, skin, and the female birth canal.
We need microbes for our survival and maintaining good health. In fact, there are “good” and “bad” microbes. The good ones fight viruses and infections, break down fibers, harvest calories and nutrients, and strengthen our immune systems. But also there are “bad” microbes that threaten our survival by causing obesity, diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, allergies, accelerated aging, and even depression. “There is a constant war going on between good and bad microbes in each of us. Winning the microbe war is essential to our well-being – in fact, to our very lives,” says Greg Matinian Founder and CEO of Maxx, Inc.
Current research is discovering that many of our health problems have their root in the increased production of endotoxin, which comes from the outer walls of certain “bad” bacteria. When there is too much endotoxin, our immune system sees it as a threat and responds with inflammation and the condition known as metabolic syndrome, the cause of many life threatening diseases such as: diabetes, cancer, heart disease and others. An excess of endotoxins can also lead to Chron’s disease, obesity, and a host of allergic conditions like asthma and hay fever. A diet of greasy foods and refined sugars and carbohydrates is the typical fare of the millions who live on fast food and sodas; this diet results in the proliferation of bad bacteria that becomes the source of poisonous endotoxins.
Doctors and researchers are finding that rather than treating the symptoms of these diseases, it is far more effective to treat the cause, which lies in an imbalance of the microbiota. When the microbial world in our bodies is balanced and in harmony, we no longer experience an increased level of bad microbes and the endotoxins they produce. How do we achieve this balance and win the war of microbes?
Strategy #1 is to regulate the diet: sugar and fatty foods cause the bad microbes to come into full bloom and multiply; their sheer numbers overwhelm the good microbes, and cause them to decrease and die off. Bad microbes also make the intestine wall more permeable, which allows the endotoxins to leak in and enter the bloodstream. This causes inflammation. Limiting or eliminating foods that feed the bad microbes is essential.
Strategy #2, we need to increase our intake of “probiotics,” which are beneficial bacteria that help maintain the balance and health in our intestine. Probiotics strengthen the lining of the intestine and fend off endotoxins, which helps prevent inflammation and the litany of lethal diseases that result from it. Probiotics can be found in certain supplements, as well as in foods like yogurts, cheeses, and sour cream that have live active cultures such as lactobacillus or bifodobacterium. They also exist in fermented foods such as kim chee, sauerkraut, and miso.
Strategy #3, add important foods that contain “prebiotics,” which are sometimes called “fermentable fiber.” The probiotics, or good microbes, will feed on the prebiotics and multiply; this will keep the intestines sealed, and it is believed that prebiotics provide further help in preventing inflammation, and will also help in the absorption of calcium and other essential minerals. Prebiotics can be found in capsules and powders, and in fortified foods such as granola bars and certain cereals. They are also found in most plants – especially garlic, onions, leeks, Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, oats, legumes, yams, and in some fruits.
Bonus Tip: Look for sources of “synbiotics,” foods that contain probiotics and prebiotics. These are especially effective if the prebiotics feed the specific strain of probiotic contained in the same food. These are found in certain supplements, fermented vegetables, and some fortified dairy products.
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- Courtesy of PRWeb