As we are not discussing the contentious issues of capital punishment or euthanasia, I presume everyone will agree that they are for life. I wonder, therefore, why we continue to take, directly or indirectly, substances that are literally ‘anti-life’.
Let’s firstly consider evolution: what a magnificent process! It is the means by which successive generations of organisms adapt and change.
This is why we have many different species on the planet. Evolution is driven by the fact all organisms have to struggle to survive long enough to reproduce in a world filled with predators, disease, and competition for resources.
As human beings, we are still constantly evolving. Evolution is a very, very slow process, but our lifestyles have changed at the speed of lightning over the last hundred years or so – overnight in terms of the history of the human race. Our bodies are now constantly bombarded with situations and substances they are not designed to cope with: the evolutionary process has not caught up yet! This is all too obvious with the dramatic increase in respiratory and skin problems in our children in very recent years. Over the last hundred years we have also seen increased incidence of life threatening illnesses such as cancer and heart disease. Yes, we appear to be much more efficient in treating these illnesses, but why are we suffering increases in the first place?
Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, said “All disease begins in the gut”. Does it surprise you then that we may well have 3-4lbs of bacteria in our gut? Bacteria were the first living organisms on earth, and they are intrinsically linked with human development. We all know that bacteria can be dangerous, a killer even, but it is important to realise that good bacteria are essential to our health and wellbeing. The problem is that the balance of the good guys to the bad guys is now totally wrong. Many things in today’s fast-paced society are indiscriminately killing the bacteria in our gut.
You will notice antibiotics at top of the list. Biotic is derived from the Greek word meaning life. Antibiotics therefore literally means ‘anti-life’. Their purpose is to destroy all bacteria. Antibiotics were initially discovered by Professor Alexander Fleming in 1928, and by D-Day in 1944 research had developed to such a degree that enough penicillin was available to kill bacterial infections suffered by the troops. It was hailed as a ‘wonder drug’. Without doubt, penicillin and other antibiotics that have been developed over the years have saved many lives. However, it is now becoming obvious that their seemingly apparent over use is causing a great deal of harm. How often are tiny babies given antibiotics for ear, nose and throat infections? How many of us inadvertently consume antibiotics because animals are systematically injected with these substances to speed their growth?
“All disease begins in the gut”
What can we do to re-address this balance? Obviously we need to think about changing our lifestyles: eating more natural, organic foods; avoiding antibiotics and chemical toxins; trying to reduce stress levels. But not all these things are easy to do, and they certainly will not improve the balance of our gut flora overnight.
In the last ten years, extensive research has been carried out into probiotics, literally meaning ‘for-life’.
Probiotics are living cultures containing beneficial bacteria and beneficial yeast that help balance the levels of current micro-organisms in the body. They also produce important nutrients which are absorbed into the bloodstream for energy. They will promote good digestion and boost your immune function and your resistance to infection. If you do not have enough ‘good guys’ in your intestine on any particular day you could, for example, be deficient in nutrients and vitamins that are now known to be crucial in the anti-cancer process. How amazing that a statement made nearly 2,500 years ago is so relevant today? ‘ALL DISEASE BEGINS IN THE GUT’
Bad breath, bloating, indigestion, eczema, allergies, frequent colds, sinusitis, bad gums, Candida, thrush, fatigue, weakened immune system.
Clinical trials have shown different probiotic strains can make a big difference for these conditions and many more. If you want to improve your family’s health, the first step is to start taking these good guys as soon as possible. However, it is very important when choosing a probiotic that it has sufficient strains of beneficial bacteria containing live cells which remain active until they reach the gut.