The more diverse your biome the more protection you have from disease. We have a huge amount of bacteria in us because they play an important role in combating disease. We have from about 19,000 to 22,000 functional genes which may seem like a lot, but a mushroom has double that amount. So in a way we have a limited amount of genes to perform many functions on a daily basis. We have increased our amount of functions by incorporating bacteria into us. We have incorporated about 3.3 million microbes. This means we have about 150 times more bacterial and viral DNA in our body than we do human DNA.
99% of metabolic function, the things that we do on a daily basis that make us human are coded for by bacterial and viral DNA. We can barely do anything for ourselves. We need microbial DNA to live. To digest food to breathe, etc.. They are involved in our emotions. Our microbiota are like superheroes. Vitamins such as B2, B12, K come from microbes living inside of us. These bacteria play an important role in combating a wide variety of diseases including autism. 70% of our microbiota live in our gut.
The terms microbiota and microbiome are used interchangeably, but they have different meanings. Microbiota refers to the actual microbes, the population of bacteria and viruses that exist in any given part of the body. The skin has a different set of microbiota than the gut. The microbiome is the totality of the microbes that exist within us. Modern living has been dedicated to destroying our microbiome. These microbiota within our microbiome dictate our function and therefore our health and longevity.
People seem to think that allergies are a normal aspect of our life. Allergies did not really exist until the Industrial Revolution. Autoimmune disease can begin from just a simple course of antibiotics and of course these drugs kill our microbiota. Being exposed to pesticides and herbicides also destroys our microbiota. This dysbiotic system eventually becomes a disease. Each year we spray an exponential increase in the amount of glyphosphate. Scientists think they have the ability to pick and choose which bacteria can live or die. This has led us to become the sickest industrialized nation in the world. C-Diff is an infection found in hospitals that is resistant to antibiotics and kills about 39,000 people a year. Antibiotics will soon not work anymore. Microbes can adapt to their environment much quicker than humans can. We have separated ourselves from the earth from our germs that are a crucial part of our gut. Our culture now cotton swabs the daylights out of everything including children’s hands. Those bacteria that we don’t want on our table are there to make us stronger. We have sterilized the life out of us and this may be one reason why we are seeing such an increase in autism. Depression has gone through the roof along with other brain disorders and there is a definite connection between our gut bacteria and our brain. We are not allowing our microbiota to do its job. We have 50 bacteria on every one skin cell. We have more bacteria on our outer shell than human skin. It is not a good idea to use antibacterial soaps and wipes. There is cross talking between our microbiota. If we kill the ones on our skin it can affect other systems such as our immune system. Microbiota that exist deep within the skin and the glandular skin (epithelium) talk to the DNA of the mitochondria in our cells to influence information at the cellular level. This means that conditions like eczema and psoriasis may originate when the deep skin populations of microbiota are out of balance.
When we use antimicrobial products we are selecting weaker microbes to kill, which strengthens the more harmful ones. Less than 2% of all microbes ever discovered are harmful to humans. 98% of all the microbes in the world are either beneficial to us or benign. The best way to control the 2% is to let the 98% flourish. Our skin is the first barrier to the immune system. Every time we use an antibacterial soap product we are setting up the process for disease. It can lead to acne, psoriasis, eczema. They can lead to just dry skin, which then breaks easier and allows harmful bacteria into our systems. That is one way to wind up with a MRSA infection. All this starts from just using these products and killing our bacteria for no reason. The microbes on our skin play a critical role in the health of our skin, but also communicate with other systems that are also vital for our health. A lot of chemicals absorb into the body through our skin. The cosmetic industry increases approximately 5% every year. Everyone uses cosmetics at different sites of the body every day. This influences our skin microbiota by decreasing their diversity. A shampoo is not just a shampoo. Just about everything you can think of that we encounter every day in our life can be toxic to us. Even your couch is sprayed with chemicals that can seep through your skin. Just about nothing in our environment these days serves us well. Our water is chlorinated and what might not bother one person can be devastating to someone else.
For every message from our brain down to our gut there are nine messages from our gut going to our brain and those messages are coming from our microbiota. Often the gut is referred to as the second brain. We have a gut feeling about something or someone. Lately it is debatable whether it is the first or the second brain. It is the only part of our body that can function independent of the brain because it has its own tremendous ecology. It seems to perpetuate without the brain constantly having to manage it. The bacteria in our gut have a direct connection to the brain and influence it. A chief complaint in doctors offices these days is brain fog. The enteric nervous system surrounds the entire digestive system from the mouth to the other end. There are more nerve endings in the enteric nervous system than in the spinal cord. It is a very dense neurological system. The bacteria in our gut have direct access to the vagal nerve which goes right to the brain. The bacteria in our gut produce chemicals that influence our thoughts. Hormones are a two-way communication system. Our gut bacteria can produce just about every hormone our endocrine system does. Our brain can communicate with our gut and ask those bacteria for more endocrine hormones that the brain knows that the body needs. It can ask for more dopamine, stress hormones, serotonin, even testosterone. These hormones play a vital role in us being human. Our bacteria determine greatly how well our brains work. They have more control over our brain than the brain does over our bacteria. Schizophrenia, depression, anxiety is now being connected to our gut bacteria. We now know that Parkinson’s begins in the gut not the substantia nigra portion of the brain. It is vital that we have a healthy microbiome. Our microbiome sends out much more messaging than what the human genome sends to the body.
To Be Continued.