Articles about the MicroBiome from Lori Calabrese, MD | The Ketamine Blog
What is the microbiome?
The microbiome is the genetic material of a vast community of microorganisms such as bacteria, protozoa, viruses, and fungi that live in the gastrointestinal tract of your body. The combined genetic factors in this environment make up more than 200 times the genetic material in your own DNA. As such, this collection of microbes provide a strong influence over your digestion, immunity, and overall health.
In fact, for you to be at optimum health and wellbeing, these organisms must be in balance. When they are, they assist your digestion and strengthen your immunity.
What is “Balance” in the Microbiome?
There are harmful bacteria and other microbes as well as beneficial ones. As long as the “good” bacteria keep the “bad” bacteria from taking over, you can enjoy health and wellbeing. But if the good guys and bad guys shift out of balance, it can cause you to become very ill from a variety of diseases.
And along with diseases, depression and anxiety can also become unmanageable.
How do you strengthen the gut -brain axis?
To strengthen your microbiome, you can
- increase the fiber in your diet
- Eat as much fruits and vegetables as you can, choosing a wide variety and including all the colors available.
- Choose high fiber vegetables in abundance like leeks, artichokes, garlic, and onions for their prebiotic fiber content. Some vegetables are low in fiber and actually have minimal nutritional value. Lettuce falls in this category.
- Seek out polyphenols, as in nuts, seeds, berries, olive oil, brassicas (cruciferous vegetables, mustard plants, and cabbages) coffee, and tea (green tea is best of all!) These are antioxidants and fuel microbes.
- Avoid snacking to give your microbiome a rest.
- Make fermented foods a strong component of your daily diet. Foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchee
- Play in the dirt. Spend time in the country, work in your garden, and enjoy the earth and the fresh air. Doing so will diversify your microbiome and multiply the types of organisms there to improve your health, your immunity and your wellbeing.
These articles about the microbiome are offered to improve your understanding of the beneficial properties it possesses.
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