This Article is About
irritable bowel syndrome
inflammatory bowel disease
diabetes type 2
colon cancer
physiological benefits
symbiotic relationship
Want To Live Longer? #15 Immunological Dysregulation Causing Your Noninfectious Disease
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Want To Live Longer? #15 Immunological Dysregulation Causing Your Noninfectious Disease

I know you have heard of probiotics and probably even prebiotics, but have you ever discussed your gut flora?

What is a microbiome? It is all the genetic elements, including all the microbes, in their own environment, and all the reactions between them all, like in our gastrointestinal tract.

What is a symbiont? A symbiont is an organism that lives in a state of symbiosis. Okay, that did not really help explain what it is. A symbiosis is actually just a close relationship, but it is between two different organisms, and inside only one organism. The relationship may or may not benefit one or both organisms.

15. The Microbiome Is Inside Us And We Are Its Host.

Your symbionts are inside your gastrointestinal tract.

And you thought it was just science fiction. Well, it is a reality.

1. We have an extended genome consisting of millions of microbial organisms living in our intestines. It is called a microbiome and it influences our health in many ways. We are the host of this symbiosis.

2. This symbiosis affects our physiology and influences our metabolism, our gene expressions and more. It is directly related to our intestinal health, and now we are finding that it is also directly related to more of our physiology than just our intestines.

3. Science is now beginning to research localized diseases like colon cancer, irritable bowel syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease being directly related to our intestinal microbiome.

4. This is also showing a relationship between more diseases, previously not thought of to be systemic conditions like Diabetes type 2 and obesity, are also relying on this microbiome.

It is true that most animals, including humans, coexist with bacteria in a symbiotic relationship and they give us a variety of physiological benefits to our health. We have developed over time a set of complex immune mechanisms that monitor and control this symbiosis.

Now I would like to go back and talk to you about what this microbiome is.


We have around 10 trillion cells in our body and around 10 times as many microorganisms living in our intestines. This is called gut flora. These microorganisms are non-pathogenic bacteria.

Pathogenic means that they can cause us harm and non-pathogenic means that they work together with us and provide us with a symbiotic relationship which helps our health. (There are also some fungi and protozoa but we are not going there at all.)

Some of the useful functions of these microorganisms or non-pathogenic bacteria consist of:

a. Preventing the growth of pathogenic bacteria which is harmful to us.

b. Regulating the development of the intestines.

c. Producing vitamins: vitamin K and biotin.

d. Fermenting unused energy molecules.

e. Producing hormones that help the body store fats.

f. Training the immune system.

So you see that bacteria is not all bad. Non-pathogenic bacteria is very useful to our human physiology.

I am going to get slightly technical here so stay with me because I will explain it as we go.


First of all I will say that bacterium is a singular word and bacteria is its plural form.

Research has identified most, but not all, of the micororganisms living in our microbiome. They have found that there is a small number of species shared by all of us as humans. From the genera bacteriosides these are:

a. Bifidobacterium.

b. Clostridium.

c. Eubacterium.

d. Fusobacterium,

e. Peptococcus.

f. Peptostreptococcus.

g. Ruminococcus.

There are some other genera, Escherichia, Enterobacter, Enterococcus, Klebsiella, and Lactobacillus present to a lesser extent. It is also expected from research that every individual has their own unique strains of bacteria as well.

See, there is one you might have heard of. You see it all the time as present in most of the yogurt cultures you find at the store, Lactobacillus. And now you know that it is only present to a lesser extent, and you can see that even something that is not predominant in our flora can have such an effect on our health.

Enterotype Enterotype is a classification of living organisms based on its ecosystem in our microbiome. So far there are 3 types of our gut flora (Enterotypes). 1. Prevotella 2. Bacteriosides 3. Ruminococcus.

These gut flora have a relationship with the nutrients we eat. Prevotella is associated with carbohydrates (complex and non-complex) and simple sugars (non-whole grain breads etc). Bacteriosides are associated with animal fats, amino acids, and saturated fats.

This means that according to what you eat, it will determine which one of your gut flora Enterotypes will dominate over the others.

This indicates that long term diets of certain foods will change your gut flora and therefore change your health.

Are you with me so far?

Our bodies cannot digest carbohydrates without our gut flora. They ferment them which in turn causes many wonderful occurrences to happen with our health.

There is also another kind of fermentation that happens when we eat too much animal protein and that produces toxins and carcinogens which are bad for our health.

This good fermentation helps the gut to have a more favorable pH therefore less pathogenic bacteria can survive.

The Colon

Different sections of the colon do have different pH factors as well as different concentrations of flora.

You hear this from the yogurt producers telling you that having the good bacteria from the yogurt cultures competes and wins against the bad bacteria in your colon if you keep giving your gut the good bacteria. This is because the good bacteria thrives better within the proper pH in your colon than the bad bacteria.

Just another reason why it is important to eat organic and many fruits and vegetables and not pig out on protein all the time.

This gut flora plays a very important role in the immune system and this starts at birth. This microbiome stimulates the body to make antibodies to the pathogens. It also plays an important part in your body's ability to discriminate between pathogenic bacteria and non-pathogenic bacteria. These bacteria are important in your body's ability to repair injury, in the synthesis of vitamins and absorption of ions, your metabolism, preventing allergies and intestinal disorders.

Other Bacteria

Some of the different bacteria, Clostridium and Bacteriosides, are related to an increase in tumor growth where Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria are known to prevent tumor growth. Hence the yogurt cultures are very good for you, iff (if and only if) they contain large amounts of the bacteria which are the Greek yogurts only.

The other disorders like IBS, colitis and obesity are directly related to the gut flora as well.

It has been shown that people that are healthy and eating large diets of meats and fats increases the production of N-nitroso compounds which are carcinogenic and known promoters of colon cancer.

It has also been shown that people with a high risk of colon cancer have the bacteria Bacteriocides stercoris and Bacteriocides vulgatus present in their flora. And people with a low risk of colon cancer have the bacteria Lactobacillus, Lactobacillus S06, Eubacterium aerofaciens and acidiphilus present in their flora.

You Are What You Eat

I hope you are starting to see how much what you eat does affect your health and in so many ways good and bad.

I also want you to see the good effects of probiotics and prebiotics as well. I am sure you know by now that when you take antibiotics it destroys all the bacteria not just the bad bacteria. You can also see what that might do to your gut flora and reason with yourself about this and start taking a probiotic, especially when you are taking antibiotics.

You can see the importance of eating better like organic and more vegetables and fruits and less protein and simple sugars, because now you understand what it does to your health.

I believe that understanding ”the why”, can be all it takes to get you to do the right thing.

If you do not want to be obese or end up with colon cancer and other diseases like Diabetes then you must start taking care of your health by eating properly.


The symbiosis between you and your gastrointestinal tract “is” your health.

Proper immune function has been shown to be dependent on the correct relationship between host and the symbionts in your gastrointestinal tract. They seem to be regulating your immune system. If they are not happy, then they make certain that your immune system is not happy either.

The evidence supporting this activity is raising the question of whether your immune system is in control of your symbionts, or are your symbionts in control of your immune system?

Street Talk

hey Sister Kaitie I have just read your article and the content is amazing. I salute you for the wonderful work you are doing. thank you

  about 1 decade ago

Your a mine of information and interesting health and fitness articles. Need to step up my intake of healthy yogurts, now I understand better the benefits.

  about 1 decade ago

hey there ...I used to eat any yogurt and then my doctor told me in order to get the benefit from yogurt it has to be Greek I like cherry is good...

  about 1 decade ago

uggh, those dreaded 3. good article!

  about 1 decade ago

dreaded 3 huh?? what...probiotics, prebiotics and eating properly?? or?? thanks for the comment....

  about 1 decade ago
Joan S  

Many people develop candida from all the antibiotics that doctors use to treat everything, as well as too much sugar in their diets. Taking probiotics is part of a good regimen. It always amazes me why doctors don't prescribe probiotics when they put people on a course of antibiotics. People being treated in the hospital often develop thrush from antibiotics fed intravenously. To get relief, all they need is a probiotic. Doctors seldom use that easy remedy. Thanks again for a great article Kaite!

  about 1 decade ago

Thank you Joan for your nice comment...I believe doctors can only say what they are allowed to say by the AMA but they really should do something about that in the hospitals, they could feed them Greek yogurt 3 times a day with their food instead of that bad hospital food.....,,.

  about 1 decade ago

A good article, no a great article, one of which I have made a fair study. It was one of the items that struck a chord when my wife first got colon cancer. the Why that was not described by the Doctors got me into research. This of course led to further readings and has been almost an on going research. (if the internet could only teach one how to pronounce all the names would help). Believe it or not but my research led me to the bacteria and microbes that live in the soils without which true soil health is unobtainable. Chemical applications, specially on golf courses, is like in the stomach, one is constantly killing all the good micro organisms that create that top layer of healthy soil, but it is not killing the bad organisms that love the lack of competition and develop anaerobic conditions which naturally left to its own in the end kills the grass. This research led to me applying microbes to the golf greens where I was employed and the difference was visible within three days. To me this had to equate to my insides and the same company that supplied the microbes for my greens had a product for human consumption. Had to get the wife to take it, I was convinced it would help prevent cancer. Unfortunately it contained iodine and she is allergic so that was that, so I took it. The change to my own health was hard to believe, stomach problems, prostate problems, general feeling of run down all disappeared. The prostate problems was a build up of candida in the stomach the experts told me and their natural exit points was a collection in the prostate. Leakey gut syndrome, a problem I had, also disappeared. What more can I say, the balance of microbes in the body a must have, so important to all health issues. Its the same in soils, and nature has a way of telling us things.. So many cases of simple diarrhea can be corrected by taking a simple stomach probiotic.. ask me I know it works... and it is much better than taking a chemical corrector... let the body heal itself rather...

  about 1 decade ago

Wow what a god experience that was for you too...I do hope you found a probiotic for your wife to take without iodine...she must have thyroid problems too? Have you tried the Garden of Life products they have lots of Raw Organic stuff that is made directly from food and not processed. I have gone strictly Garden of Life for the organics and the raw as well.....congrats on your better health and now you have a good understanding of this microbiome...

  about 1 decade ago

I meant "good" experience...Rob...and thanks again for the good words.

  about 1 decade ago

Whew! Not with you all the way but? THanks. Good info. Plus? Thanks for the reminder. I'm in a 90 day cleansing during which I didn't eat anything at all for what felt to me like a loooonnng time - and flushed out all my good and bad inside visitors. Trying to remember to take probiotics a number of times throughout the day from now at day 46 til 90 arrives.

  about 1 decade ago

Good for you are very smart to be taking care of your health....I tried to be as non scientific as I could and still get the facts across in the words....Sometimes it just has to be said....thanks for reading and commenting...good luck in your days to come...I have faith in you....Let me know how it turns out for you...please...thanks again

  about 1 decade ago

Thanks. You did a great job. I'm just not familiar with it at all. Whoops! Missed out again - time for another swallow of probiotics right now. Day 47 of 90 cleansing's going well. But got to remember to swallow those pills in the evening. Morning's easier, as in more natural to wake and see it right next to me... and again after Mass...

  about 1 decade ago
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