The latest and greatest research regarding overall health is focusing more on the intestines these days. The “gut” (more specifically,) the small intestines is where food is reabsorbed and utilized for feeding the cells of our bodies. This has lead to the discovery of just how important the bacteria in our digestive tract really is.
We have over 30+ trillion cells in our bodies. Sounds like a pretty big number until you compare it with the 300+ trillion bacteria that reside in these same bodies! Without this bacteria, we would NOT be able to absorb the nutrients in food necessary to sustain life. Therefore, bacteria has a vital role in our existence.
Our diets determine the colonies of bacteria we house within our bodies. Vegetarians, Paleo followers, Mediterranean followers all have DIFFERENT FLORA (bacteria) in their intestines. Our bodies amazingly adapt to the type of diet we provide it when these foods contain good quality nutrients and come from good quality (preferably organic) foods. Interestingly, diets high in processed foods, preservatives, toxic pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, chemicals and food coloring all cause extensive damage to the bacteria we rely on for good health. Damaging the good healthy bacteria weakens the immune system (approximately 70-80% of the immune system resides in the intestines.)
The other major culprit that damages our gut bacteria can be found in our pharmacies. Both over the counter and prescriptive medications (especially antibiotics) damage large amounts of bacteria creating an environment where “bad unhealthy bacteria can opportunistically grow and proliferate. This can lead to mild symptoms including diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain and nausea or SERIOUS HEALTH CONDITIONS including ulcerative (bleeding) colitis, infections and cancer.
Feeding our bodies what they need is NOT an optional suggestion. It is a requirement for improving the chances for a healthier more productive life. Most people do not look at food critically and abuse its consumption. The damaging effects become cumulative. In most cases we are unaware of the damaging effects our food consumption causes because our body’s have great adaptive capabilities to withstand great levels of abuse. Only foolish people need to experience symptoms proving to themselves the damaging effects a lifetime of abuse causes. Our lifespans are relatively short. Does it make sense to live the last 20 years, 10 years, 5 years, in a bed, in a recliner or in a wheelchair because we didn’t want to ingest, vegetables, fruits, healthy starches, healthy grains, healthy beans, healthy meats, healthy fish, etc?… Should the quality of our lives be ruined because we refused to walk, swim, ride a bike, lift weights, participate in dance and other aerobic classes? Rarely do I talk with people that tell me they wish to live a life of misery as they age. So why don’t people change their behavior? The only conclusion I can reach is they don’t believe it will happen to them. Most people seem to believe that NOT FEELING BAD is basically the same thing as FEELING GOOD.
We need to stop making excuses. Stop blaming costs and the inconvenience of food preparation. The following picture illustrates what impoverishment in the United States vs other countries looks like.
There are certainly many people with eating disorders that are NOT self induced, but this article is meant for those who continue to sabotage their own lives. It is time for you to recognize the tremendous value you offer and the contributions you can make to improve the world you live in. It starts at home, however. You must learn to combat this destructive behavior and replace it with one that provides good health and opportunity to enjoy life. Maintaining the current course (with or without symptoms) will likely result in damage of the intestines that may NOT BE REVERSIBLE. The following pictures show some graphic reality that EVERYONE needs to see.