How Important is Your Microbiota?


We keep hearing about microorganisms in our gut and how important they are to us. We keep hearing these words microbiota and microbiome. But what does it all mean? 

Microbiota vs. Microbiome

The microbiota is the wide variety of microorganisms that live in a certain environment. The human microbiota” includes all bacteria, viruses, fungi, and other single-celled organisms living in the human body. Every human body is host to anywhere between 10 trillion and 100 trillion microorganisms from over 1,000 different species. These organisms live in many different sites of the human body, such as the skin, gut, mouth, lungs, and more. (QIMA Life Sciences)

The term “microbiome” refers to the collective genomes of the microorganisms in a given environment, meaning the collection of all their genetic material (DNA and RNA).

Creepy Crawlers

When we hear about little organisms within us it might make us step back and say “Yikes!” We think about them as an invasion, attacking us, crawling all around us, or just plain disgusting. That vision and that perception needs to change as many of these little microorganisms help us tremendously in our life. In fact, we wouldn’t live too long if they were not there to help us. 

So we need to change our attitude about them. We need to make friends with them. Acknowledge that they are an important part of our body. Welcome them into our house, and our body.  We need to feed them properly.  We need to take care of them, develop a relationship with them, and cherish them. 

What is the Microbiota and Microbiome with Dr. Marcelle

How does the Microbiota help our body?

These microorganisms, microbiota, will help with so many things in your body including:

  • Producing a strong body as you develop through your younger years.
  • Producing some vitamins and other beneficial chemicals to help you be strong and happy.
  • Help you with your digestion, assimilation and transport of important nutrients you ingest
  • Help you reduce inflammation.
  • Help you fight invasive bacteria, viruses, fungus,and parasites.
  • Help with your immune system.
  • Help you with your hormonal system.
  • Help you with menopause.
  • Help you produce healthier babies.
  • Improve the health of  your brain including your mood, depression, anxiety, cognition. 
  • Help your cardiovascular system.
  • Help with producing energy.
  • And improving the overall quality of your life. 

What happens when your Microbiota is out of balance?

These microorganisms  are everywhere in your body and if they become out of balance or experience dysbiosis they will get sick and so will you. Some of the impacts of dysbiosis are:

  • Disrupt homeostasis (the balance of your body).
  • Depression and anxiety.
  • Decline in brain function.
  • Malnutrition.
  • Digestive issues such as heartburn, malabsorption, and IBS.
  • Allergies.
  • Obesity.
  • Diabetes.
  • Metabolic syndrome.
  • Cardiovascular disease.
  • Abnormal cell growth.
  • Stress.
  • Hormonal imbalances (conception, menstruation, peri and menopause).
  • Inflammation.
  • Autoimmune problems.

Where are the microbiota?

Where do you find these trillions of microorganisms in our body?

  • Your entire digestive tract (mouth to anus)
  • Your nose
  • Your vagina (think yeast issues etc)
  • Human male genital tract (under study)
  • Sinuses
  • Skin
  • Brain (under study)
  • Lungs (under study)

What impacts the microbiota?

These are the things that can impact and hurt these important microorganisms:

  • Lack of diversity (Caesarian birth, bottle fed, not playing in the dirt, too much antiseptic)
  • Antibiotics will kill many of them
  • Some medication like laxatives
  • Junk food will disrupt them because of the lack of nourishment
  • Stress (will produce chemicals which can destroy your good bacteria)
  • Being over tired which will be a stress on your body
  • Lack of contact with others
  • Toxicity in our food and toxicity in our environment
  • Invasive bacteria/virus species and opportunistic species
  • Trauma

How do you keep your microbiota healthy?

What can we do to take care of these microorganisms and give them the food that they need to continue helping our bodies?

Feed them fibers such as:

  • Cooked beans (black, kidney, lima, pinto, white)
  • Pear with skin
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Raspberries 
  • Sweet potato (baked with skin)
  • Barley (cooked)
  • Quinoa (cooked)

Feed them prebiotics such as:

  • chicory root
  • dandelion greens
  • garlic
  • onions
  • leeks
  • asparagus
  • burdock root
  • jicama root
  • Whole grain bread
  • Kidney beans
  • Oats
  • Algae
  • Sourdough bread
  • Honey
  • Miso
  • Sake
  • Soya sauce
  • Banana green unripe
  • Legumes
  • Potatoes
  • Bamboo shoots
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Quality milk

They prefer fermented foods such as:

  • Kefir
  • Sauerkraut
  • Miso
  • Tempeh
  • Kimchi
  • Natto
  • Yogurt
  • Fermented veggies

It is important to reflect on how you are feeding your microbiota? Start to integrate the foods that your microbiota thrives on.  Over time, this will significantly improve your health, your energy, and your potential. 

Come to think of it, make sure you reflect on how you are feeding your children and grand-children and their microbiota for all of them to grow healthy and thrive. 

Fun Facts about Microbiota

  • In our body, there are 3 times more bacterial cells than our own cells. 
  • We could have up to 1000 species of bacteria
  • The genes of our microbiome outnumber our own genes by about 100 to 1
  • There are 100,000 billion microbes in the intestine.
  • We have 1000 billion viable microbes on our skin.
  • About 50% of our fecal mass (our poop) is from our microbiota.
  • Our microbiota produces between 2-4 litres of gas per day and that is a normal phenomena.

It’s up to you. You can ignore your microbiota or become friendly with them and ultimately develop  a deep interrelationship which will benefit you, your loved ones, your community, and our planet.