What Is The Microbiome?
The microbiome is your own personal ecosystem of bacteria, fungi, viruses, archaea and parasitic elements that live within and on your body. From mouth to anus and everywhere in between, you house symbiotic, commensal and pathogenic communities of microbes. The genes in your microbiome outnumber your human genome 100 to 1, so technically you are more microbe than anything else!
Where does the microbiome come from?
Your mother’s health sets the stage for the health of your microbiome. You are bestowed with microbes through amniotic fluid while you are in the womb, then through contact with mom’s vaginal and rectal secretions during birth, skin-to-skin contact post birth and breastmilk. Your microbiome should be fully established by the time you reach the age of two.
What alters the microbiome?
Your microbiome grows along with you, changing according to your diet, geographic location, the amount of natural daylight exposure you receive, antibiotic use, health history and so much more. Disrupting your microbiome for the worse can cause disease, and some diseases can disrupt the microbiome. Understanding these interactions can help you manage your health.
Getting to know your microbiome
Using DNA sequencing via an easy at home stool test we can view the general profile of your gut microbiome. Once we have this profile we can determine whether you might want to reduce certain microbes and increase others. You’ll get to know which substrates your microbes use to fuel themselves, what vitamins and/or toxins they produce, and which microbes they do or don’t get along with. We can modulate your microbiome using diet, herbs, probiotics and prebiotics, modifying the pH of your GI tract, balancing your circadian rhythm, identifying sources of toxicity and more.