Boosting Your Microbiome - Not Just for Digestion
By: Dr. Courtney Ranieri, ND
Did you know that a healthy human gut is home to around 3-4 pounds and over 1000 different species of bacteria? Our microbiome is important not just for digestion, but new research has come out showing us the role of the
microbiome for immune health, weight control and mood.
What is the microbiome? The microbiome is the collection of microorganisms living in and on our bodies. Most of bacteria is beneficial and necessary to help break down food, keep invaders out, synthesize vitamins and absorb nutrients.
Some people even consider the microbiome another organ in itself because the body couldn’t function without it.
Here are some interesting facts about our microbiome:
We’re actually born without any microorganisms living in or on us and our first exposure comes during delivery and, as we age, bacteria found in food, breast milk and our environment help shape our microbiome for life. The microbiome changes a lot within the first 3 years of life as new strains of bacteria are being introduced and making a home in our gut. These strains stay with us for the rest of our lives. This is why it’s important to focus on setting up our toddlers’ and infants’ microbiome for the future.
How do we optimize our microbiome? Our Naturopathic Doctors are great at helping you with this this! The key is to maintain a healthy gut environment and balance between the healthy and helpful bacteria and the pathogenic invaders: