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You might be wondering how this could be that one bacterial strain could have such wide-ranging effects. We were taught about the systems of the body like they were all separate, i.e. the nervous system, hormonal system, musculoskeletal system, respiratory system, genito-urinary system, immune system, and digestive system. We have doctors specializing in every part of us, but it may be this way of thinking about our bodies is all wrong. That’s because we’ve been finding out that the digestive system is connected to every other system in the body. We’ll touch on how the microbiome affects every part of our system, how it develops, how to nourish it, and how it gets hurt.
Connections: They’re Everywhere
The microbiome, which refers to the community of microorganisms living in the digestive system, plays a crucial role in the health of every other system in the body. Imbalances or disruptions in the microbiome can contribute to a range of health problems across various bodily systems. Here’s an expanded explanation highlighting the impact of microbiome problems on each system:
The Digestive System: An unhealthy microbiome can lead to digestive issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and impaired nutrient absorption. Imbalances in gut bacteria can disrupt the delicate ecosystem, potentially causing chronic inflammation, intestinal permeability (leaky gut), and gastrointestinal symptoms like bloating, diarrhea, or constipation.
The Immune System: The gut microbiome plays a crucial role in training and regulating the immune system. When the microbiome is imbalanced, the immune system can become dysregulated, leading to increased susceptibility to infections, autoimmune conditions, and allergic reactions.
The Nervous System: The gut-brain axis is a bidirectional communication pathway between the gut and the central nervous system (CNS). Imbalances in the microbiome can affect this communication, potentially contributing to neurological disorders such as anxiety, depression, and even neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
Metabolic Health: The composition of the gut microbiome influences metabolism and energy balance. Disturbances in the microbiome have been linked to conditions such as obesity, insulin resistance, and metabolic syndrome. These imbalances can affect the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels, leading to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular problems.
Skin Health: The microbiome also impacts the health and appearance of the skin. Dysbiosis in the gut microbiome can trigger systemic inflammation, potentially contributing to skin conditions such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis.
Respiratory System: Research suggests that disruptions in the gut microbiome can affect respiratory health. Imbalances in gut bacteria may contribute to the development or worsening of conditions like asthma and allergies.
Cardiovascular System: An unhealthy gut microbiome can contribute to systemic inflammation and metabolic imbalances, both of which are risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Imbalances in gut bacteria have been associated with higher cholesterol levels, hypertension, and atherosclerosis.
Understanding the connection between the microbiome and various body systems highlights the importance of maintaining a healthy and balanced gut microbiome. Strategies to support microbiome health include consuming a diverse and fiber-rich diet, minimizing the use of antibiotics when unnecessary, managing stress levels, and considering probiotic supplementation when appropriate. By promoting a healthy microbiome, we can positively impact the functioning of multiple body systems and overall well-being.
What are the Health benefits of Lactobacillus LGG?
- Digestive Health: Supports a healthy digestive system, aids in nutrient absorption, and maintains a balanced gut microbial community.
- Immune System Support: Enhances immune function, stimulates immune cell production, and promotes the activity of natural killer cells.
- Allergy Prevention: Reduces the risk of developing allergies, particularly allergic eczema, by influencing the immune system’s response to allergens.
- Antibiotic-Associated Diarrhea Prevention: Reduces the risk and severity of diarrhea associated with antibiotic use by restoring gut microbial balance. [PMC8180529]
- Women’s Health: Supports urogenital health by preventing and treating urinary tract infections (UTIs) and bacterial vaginosis. [PMC8180529]
- Brian Health: We are discovering that Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) may play a role in cognitive aging, and probiotics can impact this process.
The Muchin Layer and Why That Matters
The mucin layer in the colon plays a crucial role in maintaining overall gut health. Researchers now think that it has much more of an impact on our health than was once appreciated. This is because it acts as a protective barrier, shielding the underlying epithelial cells from harmful substances, pathogens, and mechanical damage. This barrier helps prevent the invasion of bacteria and toxins into the intestinal wall, reducing the risk of infections and inflammation.
Besides that, the mucin layer provides a habitat for beneficial bacteria in the gut microbiota. It promotes the growth of beneficial microbes while inhibiting the colonization of harmful bacteria. This interaction helps maintain a balanced and diverse gut microbiota, which is essential for digestion, nutrient absorption, and overall immune function.
The mucin layer contains immune-related molecules and helps regulate immune responses in the gut. It assists in maintaining immune tolerance to harmless substances and prevents excessive immune reactions. Disruption of the mucin layer can lead to immune dysfunction and increased susceptibility to inflammatory bowel diseases.
In addition to its protective and immunomodulatory functions, the mucin layer acts as a lubricant, facilitating the smooth movement of fecal matter through the colon. It reduces friction and prevents damage to the intestinal lining during the passage of stool. Maintaining a healthy mucin layer ensures proper gut motility and regular bowel movements.
And if that wasn’t enough, the mucin layer promotes the absorption of nutrients by providing a surface for nutrient exchange and enhancing the efficiency of nutrient uptake in the intestine.
In summary, the mucin layer in the colon plays a critical role in protecting the intestinal barrier, regulating the gut microbiota, modulating immune responses, ensuring proper motility, and facilitating nutrient absorption. Its importance extends beyond its impact on constipation and encompasses various aspects of gut health and overall well-being. [PMID: 36326009]
LGG for Brain Health
Leaky Gut. Leaky Brain. Inflammation. [PMID: 30340384]
As our understanding deepens, we are discovering that Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) has broader effects beyond the gut. For instance, the gut microbiota plays a role in cognitive aging, and probiotics can impact this process. A clinical trial involving 145 adults aged 52 to 75, conducted in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized manner, showed that supplementation with L. rhamnosus GG (at a dosage of 20 billion CFU/day for 90 days) enhanced cognitive performance in people with cognitive impairment. The authors of this fascinating study suggest that incorporating this probiotic supplement may be an innovative approach to safeguard cognitive health as we age. [PMC7671471]
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PureGG 25B Pure Encapsulations
- Offers 25 billion CFU of one of the most characterized and clinically-studied probiotic strains on the market
- Human origin strain, identified for its resistance to gastric acidity, adhesion properties, and ability to support healthy gut microflora‡
- Numerous clinical trials across all ages, including infants, children, older adults and pregnancy
- Shelf-stable and allergen-free
- Made with hypoallergenic, vegetarian ingredients
- PureGG 25B contains highly researched Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG to support immune, GI, and overall health across all ages‡
As a dietary supplement, take 1 capsule daily, with or between meals.
Amount Per Serving 1 Capsule Serving: Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG … 25 billion CFU
This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice
Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.