What is our microbiome and why should I care? (Part I)


04 May
04May

Perhaps you are hearing the word "microbiome" more and more, but you aren't quite sure what they are talking about, or more importantly, how it relates to you. Well, your microbiome is uber important stuff and quite honestly, it's a game changer! If you want to feel good, lose weight easier and just live your best life, you need to learn about the microbiome.

Now, up until a few years ago, I knew nothing about microbiomes. I stumbled upon it in my effort to get as healthy as possible when I hit the BIG 50. Admittedly, I've always been pretty healthy, but when you approach certain landmark birthdays, your mortality hits you hard, like a kick in the gut hard.

So, what exactly is your microbiome? Quite simply, it's your bodies very own individual and personal fingerprint of cooties. Pretty scientifical I know. Okay, maybe they aren't cooties. I guess their official term is microscopic organisms, and you are a virtual cesspool of them. About 100 trillion in fact (our national debt is only $25 trillion, so put that in perspective). You are 12 zeros full of bacteria, viruses, fungi and all sorts of gross stuff that if you saw it up close you would PUKE!!! Pretty sexy, especially when you are realize you are actually more cooties than human even - a virtual cootie machine! And do you know where most of them live? I don't have the "guts" to tell you.

Ok, all puns aside, your microbiome is often referred to as "gut bugs." 95% of them live inside your tummy and intestines, swirling around, lurking and just waiting, ready to help a brother out in digesting all the food you decide to throw its way. In fact, your microbiome is actually double the size of your 3 pound brain, and it's actually the doorway to your brain. So, when your cooties are confused, so is your brain, commonly called brain fog.

So, I just want you to imagine that in your gut, lives armies of microscopic organisms all ready and armed to handle whatever you'd like to throw at it. They all have their own gifts and purposes. Some of them only know how to process starches. Others, run in when you eat a vegetable. Some are equipped to help with fats, or protein and others handle the simple carbs, versus the complex versions. They all have different roles and they need diversity, just like a complex rain forest.

However, our typical American diet is anything but diverse. It can be, but most of us are driven by processed, chemically-laden and carbohydrate loaded things we like to label "food." The good news is - our bodies adapt. The bad news is, not in a good way. We basically start hosting our own extinction parties, but you weren't invited to your own party. 

So, those poor veggie bacteria are dying by the numbers of hunger, while your bread bacteria are taking over the planet. Your gut tells your brain, "Hey, we need more bacteria down here to help with all this bread. Oh and hey, while you are at it, can you send more bread?" 

So, not only are the carb bacteria creating a world of havoc, causing you to question your willpower, but they have now made some other menacing friends, who shouldn't be in great abundance either. And, to top it all off, they managed to find some free "get out of jail" passes, which gives them the keys to your bloodstream!  Hello inflammation! 

Yikes! We've only just begun folks. I'm afraid it gets a whole lot worse, but for now, I think I've given you enough to digest. Stay tuned for Part 2 of your microbiome...

Angela Miller is an an RN and Professional Life Coach passionately pursuing her purpose to help others remember who they are and how to become their best self, emotionally and physically. For more information, visit www.soaringforward.com.

Check out my Youtube video on this subject also:

https://youtu.be/cPpnjRlRb6A


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