Human microbia is a relatively new area of research. I'm sure you understand the concept that our entire physical being is made up of tiny cells working together to create larger structure and substance. What does that look like in your mind? Still shots in textbooks with an animated flair, for me. In college, microbiology was a requirement for my program at the time. What a semester. We looked at every imaginable bit of weirdness under our microscopes. The professor had us swabbing door handles and cell phones and make-up sponges and every conceivable surface you touch each day. We would scrub our hands and then fingerprint some agar and watch the dish change into its own little round Jackson Pollux.
It was one of the experiences which changed me. I guess they all do in some fractionated way. At first I felt upset at the realization I would never be able to sanitize and scrub my way free of germs, viruses, fungi and bacteria. It was all going to get me. Yes. Yes it is. Let it wash over you. Sit with it. Accept it.
Better yet, let's understand it. Microbes are single cell organisms. They are present in the human body, mainly the gut, in a variety of over 1200 strains. The total population of your gut microbiome ranks in the trillions. These little buggers are not invaders or some unwelcome enemy. They are part of you; and an extremely important part.
Each strain of tiny mass has its own special talent or role in your body. Some are incredible at breaking down fats and lipids. Others shine when it comes to carbohydrate metabolism. Many process and remove toxins. There are mucus producers and hormone moderators. It really is uncanny the complex symphony of exchange which keeps our bodies running. Studies have shown that an individual's gut microbiome indicates the most relevant factors in overall health. Thin people tend to have more abundant strains of carbohydrate and fat digesters.
Balance in almost all things is crucial. When it comes to your microbiome, the same is true. Each populace of microbial strain works to keep other strains in check. When imbalance is ruling your internal hub, other problems arise. We discussed some of the signs and symptoms of an unsettled gut in the entry, Trust Your Gut. Today we want to address a particular side effect of an out of whack digestive system: parasites.
I suppose technically any organism which lives off the means of production by another is a parasite. There are some though, who do not belong or whose numbers become dangerous when left unchecked.
Worms are a familiar term for intestinal parasites. Typically, worms are a product of something you should not have ingested like contaminated food or water. Even if you encounter one of these little nuisances; and honestly we all do, generally a healthy immune system can mitigate such things. Remember that balance we spoke of? Particularly, when your microbiome is already unbalanced there is a unique fertile opportunity for bad bacteria, fungi and parasites to thrive and multiply.
Encountering a "bad" gut bug is one thing. Inviting them for dinner and making up a bed for them is another. Of course it sounds silly that anyone would accommodate an organism which means you harm. That is precisely what we do when we load our diets with sugar, processed food and empty calories. Parasitic organisms and intrusive yeasts feed on sugar and are able to multiply rapidly when well fed. Once their numbers outmatch the "good" gut bugs, real problems can arise.
Several common and telling signs of a parasitic infection are skin issues, mood disorders, sleep problems and digestive troubles. However, one of the most detrimental ways parasites affect our health is through the wearing away of our own Immune function. Continuously having to mind the populations of organisms which misuse your resources, exhausts your immune system. You can help by doing some Spring cleaning. Even if you feel your lifestyle is already "healthy", it is impossible to avoid toxins altogether. Chemicals are sprayed that we cannot control. The meat industry is simply too vast to guarantee clean food with zero contamination. Our water is unfortunately not as pure as it should be. And so, just as you clean your home and wash your clothes to keep them comfortable and free from dirt and grime, our bodies can benefit from the same care. An annual cleanse can work wonders when it comes to improving overall health and restoring proper digestion. Many herbs have unique properties to help remove bodily toxins and parasites, while restoring damaged tissue. Roots to Remedies offers an extensive line of detox and cleanse products to help in your quest.
After your cleanse, and in addition to herbal therapy, it is important to stop feeding the beasts. Increasing fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet is an excellent start. Reducing your sugar and refined carbohydrate intake is a must when fighting yeast overgrowth and other parasitic invasions. This challenge sounds so daunting for those who love breads and sweets. Start with measurable improvement. Promise yourself you will have a whole food (veg heavy, not processed, packaged or boxed) meal before allowing a small treat. Work with your appetite and feed it nutritional choices which help you heal and keep you feeling satisfied, rather that junk which passes through quickly and leaves you empty. Hydration and exercise are also key. Water is the universal solvent for a reason. When it comes to removing toxins and restoring order, proper hydration is paramount. Exercise improves and increases circulation, thereby encourages bodily toxins to be flushed out more efficiently.
If you are like me, reading the details can be a little unnerving. It is scary to think of every little possibility that could be throwing off our health. Perspective truly is everything. Our bodies are kind and gentle enough to us that they give us small warning signs well before any condition is irreversible. So if you begin to suffer from constipation or anxiety or eczema, you have simply been given a little nudge by your body. A nudge intended to let you know that some adjustments need to be made. It is a great gift, really. We could just drop dead at the first hiccup; but we were created to be so much more resilient.
In what has to be the most awesome realization, God equipped our world with solutions to every problem. Certainly when we arrived here as a species, there were no shopping centers or medical complexes or airplanes. Yet all of these things came to be. People created all of these things from the resources already here for us. And so it is with our bodies and their well being. We have the resources we need.
Intentionally tending to your physical health places you in the forefront of your thoughts and concerns. It focuses your attention where is should be, on your own self improvement. We have all heard that you cannot pour from an empty cup; yet here we all are, rattling our empty cups against the cages we have built for ourselves. Unaware, we are, that the person's attention we are trying to get is our own. Be the person you've been looking for all your life.
You Are the One💚
- Roots to Remedies