A healthy microbiome is linked to a strong immune system and better sleep. Here’s what you should know.
As our understanding of symbiotic gut bacteria continues to grow, the more its importance to supporting a healthy body becomes apparent. Studies now link a healthy microbiome to a well-functioning immune system, as well as to other essential functions like sleep. The same research suggests that maintaining diversity of good flora in the microbiome is key to counteracting bad pathogenic invaders.
Understanding the Microbiome
The microbiome refers to a diverse group of microscopic organisms in and on our body. The largest collection of organisms in the human body is in the intestine, which is often referred to as your gut. Your personal microbiome is established by the time you are three years old. What you eat, your quality of sleep, and your overall health have a symbiotic relationship with the organisms living in your gut.
Supporting a Healthy Microbiome
Fostering habits that support a healthy microbiome is proven to enhance resilience of the body’s overall health. One of the best-documented effects of gut health is getting good quality sleep. Creating a routine, setting a schedule, and keeping a relaxed environment are all habits that can help optimize your sleep. Other habits related to gut health are maintaining a wholesome diet and exercising regularly.
Probiotics and Your Gut
There is great interest and much marketing focused on supplementing our microbiome with probiotic blends. Probiotics can be helpful in certain situations. However, it’s important to know that probiotic supplements can’t, to the best of our knowledge, permanently change our microbiome. There are two conclusions that can be drawn from this fact. First, probiotics will only be helpful if you continue to take them. Second, the best course for long-term health is to optimize conditions for our innate microbiome to flourish.
Preventing Pathogenic Invaders
The human gut is a complex ecosystem operating a highly defended immune system. External pathogens rarely penetrate this system successfully, but the ones that do can compromise our health. In addition to sleep, exercise, and diet, drinking Phyllanthus niruri tea can help the body stop harmful pathogens from populating the gut. (Phyllanthus Niruri, also known as Chanca Piedra and Stonebreaker, does not harm friendly lacto-bacillus, but it does disadvantage other types of bacteria.)
The fruit from Terminalia chebula (Haritaki, Myrobalan), a deciduous tree, is also effective in nourishing the digestive system and thus supporting the immune system.
Optimize Your Health with a Healthy Microbiome
Healthy gut bacteria is vital to maintaining many of our most essential bodily functions. Everyone’s microbiome is a unique collection of bacteria strains. Optimize your health by supporting your innate microbiome.