I’m excited to introduce to you a series of blogs that talk about our guts—The impact of what we put into our body has an enormous impact on our health and the planet. Over the course of the next few blogs, we’ll discuss the epic benefits of bacteria, the art of fermentation, and how our guts relate to the systems and cycles of all life. I will share with you some of my most prized recipes and secrets to make the most flavorful probiotics.
Adding in enzymatic rich fermented food daily to your diet will make all the food you ingest more bioavailable enabling you to absorb maximum nutrients. Think of your gut as the composting system for your body; breaking down raw material into an enriching soil amendment. It only makes sense that recent studies have proven that healthy living soil equates to more nutrient-dense food. Dr. Miller, author of Farmacology, reminds us “Thinking of a healthy body as an extension of a healthy farm, and vice versa, is a paradigm shift for many of us. But when we consider that all of our cells get their building blocks from plants and soil then, suddenly, it all makes sense. In fact, it is not too much of a stretch to say: We are soil.” What she’s saying is, your health starts in the gut like the health of the planet starts with the soil. What we put in we get out.
The major disrupters of healthy bacteria include a diet of processed food, refined sugar, too much alcohol, chlorine, and the use of antibiotics. If you pollute your bodies to much bad bacteria generating substances, you make yourself sick. But for some reason, this has become acceptable for much of our society to contaminate the soil and ourselves.
When your gut bacteria are in balance, your immune system is also in balance. This miraculous complex living system aggressively protects your body from outside offenders if it is healthy bacteria. Unhealthy bacteria rob you of your life force. This same principle goes for the balance of the soil, which is like the immune system for the planet.
So what is our Soil/Gut relationship?
There is a very tight relationship between the gut flora, (the microbiome) and the health of the soil. Just like your gut, the soil requires healthy bacteria and organisms to function properly. Like eating a teaspoon of fermented foods, single teaspoon (1 gram) of rich garden compost can hold up to one billion bacteria, several yards of fungal filaments, several thousand protozoa, and scores of nematodes, according to Kathy Merrifield, Nematologist at Oregon State University.
Think of your body as an ecosystem. Like everything in nature dependent on healthy ecosystems for its health, your body depends on all 13 of its systems to function for optimum health. Your body is negatively affected when one system is out of whack. When you eat crappy food it contaminates all the priceless systems in your body making you sick overall just like what happens in nature when we contaminate one ecosystems it spreads to many. Example: If chemicals are dumped into the ecosystem of a river, the chemicals are eventually carried to wherever the river flows, either into the ocean, or a lake, depositing those toxins. The bank of the toxic river is then contaminated affecting that ecosystem, all the plants or animals eating from the toxic river, the riverbank, or ocean or lake are then contaminated. You get the picture? And eventually humans get contaminated when eating the plants or animals. The origin of the chemicals are far reaching.
Symptoms warning that your immune system is out of balance are: food and seasonal allergies, chronic inflammation, chronic sinusitis, and colds and flus that linger for weeks.
Let’s Cover the basics: What is the gut?
The gut is your stomach, also referred to as your abdomen or belly, the internal organ in which the major part of the digestion of food occurs. The organ is pear-shaped enlargement of the alimentary canal linking the esophagus to the small intestine. The health of your gut bacteria and the health of your immune system are paramount and vitally interconnected to the health of your body. How come? This is where your digestion takes place and 80% of your immune system resides. This essential system provides the nutrients to all of your internal systems which are dependent on what you choose to put in your body.
The process of breaking down your food actually starts in your mouth and onto the esophagus, then moves to the stomach, intestines and gut flora, and finally to the toilet bowl. The “Gut Flora” also referred to as Intestinal Flora are the symbiotic bacteria and microorganisms occurring naturally in the intestine. Hard to believe, but you are made up of 90% bacteria, trillions of them, most of them living inside your gut. That’s approximately three pounds lining your intestinal tract alone! Almost one in 10 of those cells is actually human. The rest are from bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms from the earth. So when I say we are nature, I mean it literally!
Human waste can make some great soil amendments if the diet is healthy and you utilize a proper composting systems. Remember that your gut is your personal composting system. Many places in the world use properly decomposed human waste as fertilizer. In China they call it “nightsoil!”
Your gut flora reacts to the nutrients you put in your body like the soil reacts to what is put into it. Conventional agriculture that utilizes processed chemical fertilizers depletes the soil of good bacteria and all the well-intended organisms. This type of farming negatively affects the immune system of the soil just like when you dump chemical processed foods into your body.
What you put in your gut can destroy you.
If this is not enough to encourage you to eat and drink for your health, Science America notes that the gut is technically known as the enteric nervous system, or the second brain, and deserves our utmost attention. Let’s start listening and respecting what our gut is telling us.
Now that we have the important and necessary knowledge about our gut, in my next blog, we’re going to put down the processed foods, stop drinking the sugar-laden drinks, and talk about getting our gut back into balance!
Founder of Soil to Soul Solutions
Go out there and inspire someone today to be
part of the solution and not the pollutions.