Get to know your gut bugs...
Everyone has a microbiome as unique as their fingerprint. We inherit our microbiome from our mothers at birth. Everything that we consume (diet, alcohol, preservatives and medication) along with other factors, such as stress, affects our unique balance. What we feed or don’t feed our microbiota affects our balance of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bugs as well as their diversity. Ideally, we want a rich diversity… Think of a native forest that requires lots of different species to stay healthy.
With new molecular testing methods, our understanding of the microbiome has exploded. Our microbiome can be comprised of trillions of microbes from over a thousand species and weighs 1-2kgs. We now recognise it as a separate organ with many different physiological functions. We all know about its effects on immune function, absorption of nutrients and healthy gut motility, but we are now discovering its effect on mood, blood glucose regulation, weight management, inflammation and its connection to conditions such as IBS, IBD, allergies and autoimmune conditions. For optimal health, we want to get the balance right... to increase our 'good bugs' (which improve immune function, gut healing and nutrient absorption) and decrease our 'bad bugs' (which cause inflammation, intestinal permeability, visceral hypersensitivity, excess wind or bloating and problems with motility). To get to know your unique microbiome a simple stool test can be undertaken. (speak to Ayesha about options).
With or without the test, Ayesha can help you design a gut-feeding protocol using foods and inexpensive prebiotics to diversify and balance your microbial populations. Prebiotics are more effective than probiotics, as probiotics are transient non-native species that don’t populate the intestines. Whereas, prebiotics (supplements and foods) feed our native microbial populations and help grow a healthy and diverse forest.
This is especially beneficial in pregnant women or women about to give birth (and pass along their microbiota), people with digestive disorders (e.g. IBS, IBD, coeliac or digestive infections), those with immune issues (such as allergies, frequent infections, autoimmune disease), mood disorders, blood glucose or weight disorders.
This can be incorporated into a naturopathic appointment.