GUT HEALTH AND YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
For years I had heard the statistic kicked around; "80% of your body's immune system can be found in the gut". Because I figured I really ought to know where this came from, I did a quick Google search and this is what I found. In 1999, a group of three Australian doctors from University of Melbourne's Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology published a scientific paper in the American Journal of Physiology called, The Intestine as a Sensory Organ: Neural, Endocrine, and Immune Responses.
In the Abstract, the authors revealed something that the scientific community (particularly the portion with a bent toward natural healing) has known for decades. "The gut immune system has 70– 80% of the body's immune cells". Stop! Did you catch that? Read it again and let the sheer magnitude of what they are saying sink in. Your "Gut" (intestinal tract) is where the vast majority of your Immune System lives! Poor digestive / gut health (HERE is one extremely common example) automatically means poor Immune System function. I showed you yesterday that is just the beginning (HERE). Poor Immune System function opens a Pandora's Box of health problems that can affect any and every part of the body. In other words, GUT HEALTH is everything!
It is not a coincidence that DYSBIOSIS is now being touted as the primary culprit in AUTOIMMUNITY (At least one in four Americans are afflicted with some sort of Autoimmune Disease). This doesn't even begin to touch on our national epidemics of FIBROMYALGIA, ADRENAL FATIGUE, THYROID ISSUES, ENDOCRINE PROBLEMS OF ALL SORTS, MIGRAINE HEADACHES, OBESITY, as well as a long list of others (HERE). Dysbiosis is also heavily related to LEAKY GUT SYNDROME (actually, it's the FLIP SIDE of the same coin).
"The enteric nervous system contains on the order of ten to the eighth neurons, the gastro-entero-pancreatic endocrine system uses more than 20 identified hormones, and the gut immune system has 70– 80% of the body's immune cells. When this response is maladjusted or is overwhelmed, the consequences can be severe or debilitating as in irritable bowel syndrome."
The two primary causes of America's dysbiotic nightmare? Easy. ANTIBIOTICS --- even SEEMINGLY SMALL AMOUNTS of antibiotics --- get the ball rolling by killing off your good bacteria (some vaccines have been accused of this as well --- HERE). Remember that these are the same bacteria that make up a huge portion of your Immune System. Too much SUGAR & JUNK CARBS keep the process moving by feeding the bad bacteria. What it their food of choice? Easy. In similar fashion to other health problems, SUGAR FEEDS INFECTION.
Again, the antibiotics kill your good bacteria, while SUGAR & REFINED CARBOHYDRATES feed the Dysbiotic organisms (bad bacteria, YEASTS, MOLDS, fungi, PARASITES, etc) that begin taking over your Gut. Sometimes, simply going on a PALEO or other LOW CARB DIET, and taking some HSO PROBIOTCS can be enough to pull a person back to health. Frequently, however, things are so fouled up that a person is going to have to go "ALL IN" in order to solve their crisis. Understand that when we start talking about some of the crazy and severe problems that are befuddling doctors today (MUPS, for instance), you might have to REALLY THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX in order to regain your health.
Dr. Schierling completed four years of Kansas State University's five-year Nutrition / Exercise Physiology Program before deciding on a career in Chiropractic. He graduated from Logan Chiropractic College in 1991, and has run a busy clinic in Mountain View, Missouri ever since. He and his wife Amy have four children (three daughters and a son).