Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Lost Organ

Digestion is a critical part to health.  You are not what you eat, you are what you absorb.  I'm reading through a new book on GI Health and one of the things discussed is "The Lost Organ."

Inside the Large Intestine lies 5lbs of friendly bacteria.  This is what Gerard E. Mullin MD, professor of Medicine and Director of Integrative GI Nutrition Services at Johns Hopkins refers to as the Lost Organ.  This flora consists of over 500 species of friendly bacteria.  The bacterial DNA outnumbers your human DNA by a factor of 100.

Digested food passes through to the large intestine, where this flora starts to ferment the carbohydrates that the human body is unable to process.  Essential vitamins like Biotin and Vitamin K are produced from this process.

This fermentation also produces short chain fatty acids that increase the guts absorption of water, regrow gut cells in the colon and may provide defense against colon cancer and IBD.

What is the recipe for the creation of both good and bad bacteria in the lost organ?

The bad bacteria thrive on sugar and low fiber.  Good bacteria will thrive on fiber, high nutritional food and you can support all this with probiotics.

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