We are losing the war on bacteria and our health is the biggest victim.
Antibacterial soap, bleach, and disinfecting wipes are common items found on the shelves of our grocery stores. As a society, we are obsessed with hygiene. We wash our bodies once, sometimes twice, a day with hot and soapy water. This obsession coupled with our phobia of bacteria keeps sales of these products strong but compromises our immune system in the process.
On top of that, the over use of antibiotics further compromises our immune system while creating super bugs that become antibiotic-resistant.
We have missed the point completely.
Bacteria is not our enemy.
On our skin, a healthy bacterial diversity and flora prevents pathogens from entering the skin. In our gut, a healthy bacteria flora is one that’s balanced with a large variety to help you break down food and synthesize important vitamins and nutrients. Most bacteria have a SYMBIOTIC relationship with the body including notorious bacteria such as H. pylori, E. coli, Streptococcus, and Staphylococcus.
So what happens when you get an infection if these bacteria are already in your system? The answer is twofold:
Number 1: The immune system becomes stressed, which causes the bacteria diversity of the body to falter.
Number 2: An unbalanced community of bacteria flora allows certain bacteria such as E. coli to overwhelm the entire system.
THAT’S when these bacteria can become very dangerous. A weakened immune state and an imbalance of the bacterial flora is how most infections happen. This is why only some of the kids at the playground get sick or how only a few of your colleagues at work seem to catch the latest bug going around.
Next week we will talk about how we can boost our immune system and nurture a diverse bacterial ecosystem!