Why Does Gut Health Matter?

Why does gut health matter?

Inflammation is at the root of most diseases and chronic injuries and an unhealthy microbiome and increased gut permeability increases systemic inflammation. A significant portion of our immune system, called the gut associated lymphatic tissue (GALT), resides in the gut. The lining of the gut is a single cell layer that, when disrupted, leads to increased gut permeability- also referred to as leaky gut. We now know that there is a significant neurological and immunological connection between the gut and the brain. If your gut is leaky, your brain will also have increased permeability and vice versa. The microglial cells in the brain are connected with the white blood cells in the body. This means that auto-immunity in the body can lead to auto-immunity in the brain. There is a great book that came out this year about the Microglial cells that I would highly recommend: The Angel and the Assasin: The Tiny Brain Cell that changed the Course of Medicine .

What increases gut impermeability and why does it matter? A myriad of factors lead to the connections between the lining cells in the gut becoming permeable. Some of the common causes are toxins, infections, stress and food intolerances. Once the gut is permeable, the immune system, which lies on the other side of the single layer of cells can get overwhelmed and over-react. This leads to food intolerances and inflammatory reactions such as allergies. This, in turn, leads to greater gut permeability. This is why, when gone untreated, peoples allergies often increase with age. You may initially be allergic to just one antibiotic and over time, you develop allergies to many antibiotics. Leaky gut also leads to malabsorption of nutrients and diminished metabolic systems in our bodies. 

The systemic inflammation that comes with increased gut permeability makes it harder for your body to repair itself and leads to increases in auto-immunity and chronic injuries. It is important to put out this fire in order to increase the efficacy of regenerative treatments. Otherwise, it’s like trying to build a bridge in a war zone. In order to effectively treat my knee as described in the previous blog post, I had to put out the fire that was going on in my body. From years of shift work, eating pizza and cupcakes, and drinking mochas at two in the morning, my systemic inflammation was high. My first PRP injection resulted in my knee blowing up like a softball. I didn’t know what I didn’t know and had no idea that while the regenerative injections were a fire hose on the fire, I was throwing propane on the fire with my lifestyle at the same time. It wasn’t until I started to address my gut health and overall systemic inflammation that my knee was able to heal.  

At Boost, we use an integrative approach of addressing multiple factors of health with experts in different areas to work with you to make sure your soil is healthy and fertilized before planting seeds. We are complex organisms and by looking at the whole body and the interconnectedness of everything, we are able to treat the root cause of your symptoms and get you back to doing what you love to do.