"Gut culture" and the immune system are connected, in fact, some of the most important cells of the complex immune system are manufactured by "friendly bacteria"; you damage them, you damage your immune response. Patients for a long time had to discover this on their own. They had to learn the hard way that in order to completely recover, they had to....repopulate their own intestinal flora. I just heard about a most ingenious recovery method to repopulate intestinal microbes from a client who was here to buy kefir grains. Four months ago she was so sick due to a series of events that started with a pathogen and then antibiotic treatment then birth of a baby, then more illness and finally she had no immunity and no intestinal bacteria left and was on death's door. Her doctor (sorry I do not have his name or my client's) suggested a very new and radical treatment called " fecal matter transplant". She and her family agreed and found a donner; her sister. She said that she and her sister were a "match" and I do not know if blood type was part of that matching process, but the "fecal matter transplant" from her sister worked. There were enough friendly bacteria in her sister's fecal matter (poo) to restart or repopulate the cleaned out gut of her sister. She said it worked so fast, within hours she started to feel like herself again. She was seeking kefir grains from me so she could start making raw milk kefir for herself to keep her "gut culture" well and happy. She said she is not going back to her old, eating habits but is now cooking for herself and family and is very aware that she must eat for her gut culture too. Her adventure and this amazing procedure impressed upon my mind the importance of keeping the flora or microbes in our gut well. It sounds like this procedure saved her life, she thinks so but it sounds like a desperate or last resort option.
There are lots of pro-biotic supplements and foods on the market...it has grown into a huge industry. Commercial/industrial food companies have come up with a myriad of dairy products that promote pro-biotic cultures and some doctors now recognize the need to repopulate a patient's post antibiotic treatment with pro-biotic supplements. All of this is good and going in the right direction, but if we ate right to begin with would we need need all this supplementation?
The more I learn about fermenting and culturing of foods and the more I am getting to understand just how important our "gut culture" is to our digestion, our physical and mental health and our thinking. Some are calling this bio mass in our intestines our "second brain". I wonder, is it called our "second brain" because it is an important part of our immune systems, or is it that friendly microbes produce other compounds that affect our thinking and feeling? Both have been suggested in the material I have read. I am not listing websites or research studies on this topic, I don't want to take the time, I'm just discussing this topic because it fascinates me and of course it validates what I do. I sell starters for kefir, kombucha, natural yeast breads and yogurts; foods that promote the growth of and re-population of healthy gut microbes.
I know that cheap, industrialized food so prevalent in our culture have helped upset the balance of our "gut cultures" and have made us fat, addicted to the very foods we crave and upset the balance of positive and negative (candida) microbes in our intestines. The worst foods are those made with wheat, pasteurized
milk, corn, vegetable oils, refined sugars and anything that is synthetic or artificial and of course all the additives and chemicals that don't even sound like food. I know that getting away from convenience foods made by the industry is a must and a start, and doing our own food prep and cooking using real food, is essential to regaining health. Those bad, cheap and tasty foods create an acidic condition in our gut that promote pathogen culture, not life saving and healthy gut cultures.
I know of some products that will kill pathogens without killing the friendly guys.
Essential Oils; I use and promote essential oils whether it is Young Living or D'Oterra or Butterfly Express, whatever. If you have some oils, learn which ones can be taken internally to kill pathogens. They are selective, they will not harm the friendly ones or human tissue and cells. Oils are expensive. Ask around and shop around. The first two companies are mlm companies.
MMS; Miracle Mineral Solution is another pathogen killer that I have used successfully. It is a mixture of two chemicals that create a gas in water that kills pathogens only. Chlorine dioxide Ion (CLO2)is a gas that is made when a few drops of citric acid or vinegar is mixed with drops sodium chlorite solution. It is a negatively charged gas suspended in water that is safe for human consumption and kills pathogens on contact. It does not kill the friendly microbes or human tissue or cells. It tastes nasty and must be started with very tiny doses but it is very effective. Also can be used to purify large containers of water.
Bentonite Clay; There are many brands and deposits of this clay all over the world but the one I am familiar with is the one that goes by the label of Redmond Clay. The same company that mines and markets Redmond Salt. This clay deposit is also on their property in Redmond, Utah. I believe it is a healer. The company cannot say this, but I am suggesting that it is a healer for intestinal trouble. I've read testimonials of sick people who used this clay mixed with plain water to treat heartburn, diverticulitis, colitis, roto-virus,
h-pylori bacteria, celiac and acid reflux. It is inexpensive and easy to use and it is alkaline. Pathogens do not survive in an alkaline environment. We haven't been really sick to try it out but I have used it on wounds with great success.
Virgin Coconut Oil; Dr Bruce Fife claims that virgin coconut oil is a germ killer. It is one of the reasons we started using it. His book, "virgin Coconut Oil; Nature's Miracle Medicine" explains why short and medium chain fatty acids kills germs/pathogens without harming human tissue and cells.
Herbs and Tinctures of Herbs: This is a huge topic and I cannot speak of it with any authority or experience but there are many who are knowledgeable of herbs and their many uses.
In the near future I think it very important for every person and certainly every mother to have one or two tested and trusted ways to treat infections of all kinds especially the infections that threaten the health of the "gut culture". I know there are many websites out there with far more information and knowledge about these topics than I have and searches are so easy with internet. Being mindful of "gut culture" health is basic to keeping your health....it's easy;... give up eating the bad stuff and eat the good stuff and when you get a gastrointestinal infection, treat with alternative methods not antibiotics when at all possible.
Healthy "GUT CULTURE" is nurturing friendly bacteria which results in a Strong Immune System.