Integrative Health Blog

6 Habits for a Healthy Microbiota

Posted by on Mon, Jan 21, 2019

There are more and more studies being done to research the body’s microbiota. Microbiota refers to all the microorganisms that are found in an environment. In the human body, the gut, the vagina, the sinuses, the mouth, the skin, the blood, etc. and each have their own microbiota which includes bacteria, viruses, fungi and other single celled animals.

Humans have many more microbial cells than human body cells. There are close to 10 microbes to one human cell! That is a big deal. Most of these are symbiotic and necessary for the continued health of the host. What does this have to do with good health? These microorganism play a role in many health conditions, impact our immune system, provide nutrients for cells and may prevent harmful cells from multiplying! Integrative medicine practitioners support a healthy microbiota as it is a key component for the overall health of the patient. 

So, how do we continue to have a healthy microbiota or restore it?

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Tags: integrative medicine, digestive health, microbiome

Creating a Healthy Microbiome in the Gut

Posted by on Tue, Jun 06, 2017

When considering what is healthy for our overall digestion, it is important to understand that the gut microbiome is a complex ecosystem.   The inherent diversity of an optimal gut flora is a key component of a healthy digestive tract.  The human body is made up of more bacterial cells than human.  It is critical that these bacteria consist of beneficial flora that can aid and support our health.  In nature, the vitality of the soil is an important factor in both the composition of plants that will grow as well as the strength of those plants.   Similarly, we need to plant the proper seeds or probiotics in our gut and water this diverse soil with a healthy diet.

What determines the health of the "soil" in our gut microbiome?

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Tags: gut, digestive health, microbiome

Understanding the Human Microbiome: Mini Ecosystems in the Body

Posted by on Tue, Oct 18, 2016

So many –“omes” to understand . . .  human genomics, metabolomics, toxigenomics . . . what does the suffix  “–omics” actually mean?

One free online dictionary1 says that –omics is “the large scale study of biological entities”.  So genomics, in the most simplistic terms, is the study of all of the genes of an organism; metabolomics is the study of the small molecules that are substrates (biochemical ingredients), products, or intermediates of metabolic reactions in an organism.

What is the microbiome in the body?

The microbiome refers to the full set of micro-organisms that inhabit a given site, most often (when discussing humans) the gut, but one might study the skin, oral, nasal/ lung or vaginal microbiomes. Each area has its own cluster of bacteria, or microbiota. Gut microbes make up the largest population within the human microbiome. When studying the microbiome, often the genetics of the microorganisms that live on us and in us, are the focus.

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Tags: digestive health, microbiome