The Human Microbiome Project

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The days of the lower gut playing a bit role in overall health and wellness are over. The National Institutes of Health have a lot to say today about the importance of maintaining a healthy balance of gut bacteria and why these gastrointestinal microbes are key players in maintaining your body’s wellness.

The Common Fund and the HMP

The National Institutes of Health manages the Common Fund’s Human Microbiome Project for the purpose of describing and valuing the bacterial communities that live on and in the human body as well as their effects on human health and disease. Although bacteria outnumber human cells in the average healthy adult, little is known of how these bacteria affect our physiology, nutrition, development, and immunity to disease.

Bacteria, the Lower Gut and Their Roles in Wellness

As recently as 20 years ago medical scientists assigned but a small role to the bowel. Physicians placed little value on the lower gut in terms of its role in promoting better health and wellness. The past 15 years, however, have seen increasing amounts of research supporting the theory that the lower gut, and the bacteria that live there, actually play a major part in overall wellness.

Every person’s lower gut produces a mix of “good” and “bad” bacteria. Bad bacteria negatively affect health well beyond the walls of the colon; in fact, recent research published in the New England Journal of Medicine and overseas reports that unhealthy bacteria promotes poor cardiovascular health and possibly obesity. More and more studies conclude every year that healthy gut bacteria levels promote boosted immunity, stronger bones, reduced discomfort from IBS and IBD and more.

How Prebiotics Help

Prebiotics won’t cure heart disease, obesity or cancer. They also won’t cure IBD or IBS. But prebiotics do act as a scientifically proven fertilizer of the “good” bacteria that do help fight these dangerous conditions. At the same time, Prebiotin helps these healthy bacteria flourish, it also inhibits the production of disease-causing “bad” bacteria, thus improving overall wellness.

Stay tuned for the research results sure to confirm what many gastroenterologists already suspect: that a healthy lower gut means a healthier overall you.

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