These days we’re all taking our gut health much more seriously as the important role it plays in our overall health becomes clearer.
Everyone’s drinking kombucha, eating sauerkraut or has a fresh batch of bone broth on the stove. Which is awesome… because compromised gut health is associated with everything from simple allergies, asthma, eczema, weight gain all the way to more serious issues like depression, autoimmune diseases & even autism.
Yep, it has THAT much influence over our health!
So the whole reason you want to include things like bone broth & fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi & kombucha in your diet is because they boost your overall number of beneficial gut bacteria, which by the way are also known as probiotics, microbes, micro-organisms, gut flora, gut bugs – it all the same thing.
But what do these gut bugs actually do for you??
Well… it turns out they do an awful lot! And by awful I mean wonderful!
In fact I was pretty blown away when I first came across all these incredible facts. Not only do they help you to absorb the nutrients from the food you eat (DO NOT underestimate how important that is, if you’re not absorbing nutrients from your food, you’re in trouble!)… they also control your mood & impact your sleep by regulating the production of serotonin (serotonin is a neurotransmitter that sends calming signals to the brain that impacts mood & sleep), they stop you from getting colds & the flu, keep viruses away & even regulate your appetite & body weight.
In a nut shell, the quality of your gut microbes determines the quality of your health.
Let me say that again… the quality of your gut microbes determines the quality of your health.
But here’s the thing… it isn’t just a numbers game.
It’s also about DIVERSITY!
And while eating fermented foods & populating your gut with those beneficial microbes is incredibly important, it’s only half the battle…
You see, there’s another type of microbe (or bug/probiotic/microorganism… whatever you would like to call it!) that you need in your gut that you CAN NOT get from fermented foods…
These bad boys are the soil microbes & they play a HUGE role in your health.
See, while both types of probiotics are important for optimal gut health – when they’re both present in your gut, they work together to maintain balance & their effects are AMPLIFIED!
On top of this, soil microbes (which are called spore form microbes) are actually better at surviving in the acidic environment of the human stomach than the microbes you would get from fermented foods (which are called lactic acid based microbes) thanks to their hardened protective shells. This enables them to live in your gut for longer, which means you get to experience the benefits for longer!
So what kind of benefits am I talking about exactly?
Well, not only do they help to maintain the balance between your good & bad gut bacteria (which is SO super important for keeping away a host illnesses)… but they also increase nutrient absorption, treat yeast overgrowths like candida, digestive issues like IBS, stop bloating, prevent autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases & give your immune system a serious boost.
Is it any wonder they’re said to be among the most important things for your health? We think not 😉
But here’s the thing… as powerful as these organisms are… most of us are missing out on the benefits they provide because we just aren’t being exposed to them anymore.
We’re not spending anywhere near as much time outdoors as we should be, & we’ve become obsessed with sanitising everything. Everything including our food must be wiped clean without a speck of anything on it. Our need to be clean is compromising our health!
In fact, I remember being told to wash my hands immediately after coming into contact with any animals as a kid! These days not a day goes by when I’m not smothered with kisses from our 2 beautiful pups, & you know what? I’ve probably got a stronger immune system for it, thanks to the extra microbes I’ve likely picked up from them!
Okay – So how can you start populating your gut with the soil based probiotics then?
…First & foremost… Start growing some of your own food in microbe rich soil! This is the BEST & easiest way.
And it doesn’t take much, even just a few herbs like rosemary, parsley or mint – really easy stuff to grow!
By doing this you’ll be exposing yourself to these organisms just by getting out there & getting your hands dirty in the soil! That’s all it takes!
Just make sure you’re using certified organic ingredients like aged chicken manure, cow manure & rock minerals to lay the foundation for a fertile, rich & living environment for these microbes to thrive (& reproduce in). The reason why you MUST get Certified Organic (besides the awful affects it can have on your body) is because harsh conventional fertilisers & chemicals will wipe out the microbes – not what you want!
Another way to increase microbial activity in your soil is by using Molasses. Put a nice blob of Molasses into your watering can & water it into the soil – they go nuts for the stuff!
Another reason why homegrown food makes it easier than ever to get your daily dose of soil probiotics is because these probiotics will literally be on the food that your pulling out of your garden!! And because you’ve grown it yourself without any nasty chemicals, you don’t need to scrub it clean… or even peel it for that matter (which of course would get rid of the majority of them!).
…Now if you don’t want to grow your own food, the next best thing you can do is buy organic & not scrub it clean.
Why? Because if you’re food doesn’t have any chemicals on it & you know where it’s coming from, again there’s no need to scrub it… That way you’ll still be able to retain some of those microbes – not as many as if you we’re growing it yourself, but enough to make a difference!
– Lastly – You can actually purchase soil based probiotics in capsule form (just like you can purchase lactic acid probiotics in capsule form) – this might be a better option for you if you have no way of exposing yourself to soil or eating organic produce.
Either way, these 3 options will get you well on your way to populating your gut with – & experiencing the benefits of – soil based probiotics.
Hopefully I’ve inspired you to get a little dirty & to expand your palate of microbes!
Never underestimate the incredible health that can come with taking these small steps – it’s truly life changing!
Speak soon, Anth