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DIET FOR LIFE: PART 2 I HOLISTIC HEALTH


Bacteria farm Researchers are now saying


Inner balance that ‘microbiota’


organisms in the human body), make up a large part of us, and in fact that our body can be seen as ‘their vessel’ *[1]


(micro- ,


and that they have a large impact on our health. It seems therefore, that we own our bodies less than we thought. In an article titled ‘Some of My Best Friends Are Germs,’


by Michael Pollanmay, in May 2013 in the New York Times Magazine, it is described how ‘we would do well to begin regarding the human body as an elaborate vessel optimized for the growth and spread of our microbial inhabitants,’ and that ‘we are only 10 percent human: for every human cell that is intrinsic to our body, there are about 10 resident microbes’.


“Health, or disease, begins in the gut, and this is affected by the (balance of the) bacteria living inside of us”


The author also writes about how this ‘new way of thinking about the self has large implications for human and microbial health, which turn out to be inextricably linked’, and further claims disorders in our internal ecosystem, or: ’A loss of diversity, say, or a proliferation of the “wrong” kind of microbes — may predispose us to obesity and a whole range of chronic diseases, as well as some infections.’ Researchers use the word ‘microbiota’ to refer to all the microbes in a community and ‘microbiome’ to refer to their collective genes, the author also explained *[1]


.


“Like our fingerprints, facial characteristics and personalities, our gut microbiome — the community of bacteria, yeast and viruses that live inside us — is unique to each of us,” says U.S. nutritional expert, M.Ed., ABAAHP Donna Gates, adding: “As we age the diversity and numbers of the microbiome shift and change in integrity, and at every stage of our life our gut health can easily be compromised.” Further explaining the significant effect food has on our overall wellbeing in this respect, and that, in fact, ‘what we eat is the principle activator of our microbiome,’ Gates says: “The microbes that live inside us control our weight, our immunity, our hormone balance, and how we age. They hijack our brain and can cause happiness or anxiety and depression. They send out signals causing us to crave foods and they even affect how well we sleep,” she says. “We are looking at this now from the most cutting-edge point of view in the field of nutrition and biology,” says David Wolfe, a leading authority on nutrition, super foods and longevity from the US: “We are a farm of friendly bacteria; acidophilus, bifidus; all of the great, friendly bacteria. They are going to give us the best nutrition, they are going to help us break down our food, and they are going to work symbiotically with us and make us healthy. They are part of the overall picture.”


www.body-life.uk


Friendly gut bacteria such as Staphylococcus, Enterococcus and Lactobacillus depicted in this illustration play an important role in our health


Researchers are increasingly becoming aware of the importance to our health of a balanced and flourishing inner ecosystem living inside our intestines, and Gates herself has for 20 years been advising people globally on exactly that. Gates, who through her company Body Ecology Inc. also advocates the message that the digestive system is linked to the immune, endocrine, circulatory and central nervous system, has based her knowledge on 25 years of studying Eastern healing systems and Western fad diets. “Each of the trillions of bacteria inside us has its own set of genes. Their genes positively or negatively control our genes. So you can see why disease begins in the gut, but why health begins there as well. If you have anything wrong with you, first fix the gut!” About the Healthy Gut Summit, an online Body Ecology event which ran in February 2015,


Gates says: “It brought


to the forefront an understanding that poor gut health is underlying all diseases — the ones that are plaguing humans today and have since time began. Our gut is the command centre of the body.” However, it’s not easy to maintain a gut balance in


today’s way of living, and with use of antibiotics and certain chemicals in our modern diet, for example: “We screw up the terrain of our friendly bacteria, which are not dominant enough when they grow back to maintain homeostasis in the body’s system,” Wolfe says, adding that this means that fungal infections like Candida are running out of control for millions of Westerners: “Some people that eat any sugar or any kind of sweet at all, get Candida. We have to sort that out; that is our first step.” Like Wolfe, Gates describes Candida, or Candida Albicans


as it’s known scientifically, in her book The Body Ecology Diet as one of the core health issues related to an out-of- balance diet. Her own website shows that according to Rice University, 70% of all people are affected by Candida, whilst Harvard University has found Candida the most predominant fungal infection behind human disease *[2]


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body LIFE 2 I 2015 I 51


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