Thoughts to consider concerning your Gut

As we move through life, at one time we hear about this being bad for you. Then years later we hear of that same thing being good for you. Then as we get a little bit older, we hear talk of well, maybe and maybe not. It really depends on several factors. By the time we reach the end of the line, we are so confused that we just sort of fade away into a cesspool of confusion. However, as we move along the path, each cycle of new discoveries tend to follow a path of higher quality outcomes. So here we will discuss one of those ideas. 

Have you ever heard of the term, Bacterial Community Composition?  Likely not, but you have heard of it in more simple terms, that being Gut Flora. The two are one and the same. The studies and opinions formulated from those discoveries have lead researchers to start to make some claims that make perfect sense.  One of those ideas I am sure you will hear more on before long and that is the idea that Gut Flora has a heritable connection. In simple terms, the DNA programming has a lot to do with transferring from one generation to the next.  What this means is that as a fetus, we select for a unique set of microbes in our gut based on the generational history of our conditions.  Yes, we can change that programming, but it takes time to do so. IE; it doesn't just change overnight. 

This type of system worked real good in the past. In some cases, a vast number of successive generations stayed in one place, ate the same foods, experienced pretty much the same living conditions over these several generations. Not a whole lot of change, if any at all. Then all of a sudden, massive changes are thrown at the gut flora and it eventually becomes overwhelmed. Then we experience a faulty functioning gut and by association the whole body malfunctioning beginning its journey. 

Over time we have all sorts of studies that claim if you do this then you will experience a long and healthy life. Only to find out that it isn't so, we are sick and that idea is soon recognized as being suspect. Why? Because we have discovered a new, better way with supporting ideas. That new idea is counter to the previous idea. So we end up with a swimming pool full of ideas sloshing about in the grey matter of our minds. However, we do have an idea that is forming that I can't but to think that it might actually work, because it makes perfect sense, scientifically. So here goes; In animal studies, in human studies and even in plant studies, the idea is taking shape and it is in its early stages and that is testing the gut, genetically and DNA wise to determine the best solution to whatever issue it is that is of concern.

So how would this apply? Take a person's diet, based on the DNA criteria for diets, you would be tested to see what foods would work best for you and what would not. For example, they might test a racehorse for performance, They could determine which ration would be best for that horse, which is likely to be quite a bit different than one of the other racehorses that he competes against. In a milk cow, they could do tests on the gut and determine how to feed the cow to adjust the fat and protein levels in her milk. Same could be said about the Methane levels produced by the cow or other Methane-producing animals. They would adjust the type of food to reduce the Methane production, based on the individual cows' needs. All of this is done or adjusted to function within certain parameters of course, based on the individual's needs and abilities.  I don't think there have been many species not studied for this stuff. I mean you can find Gut Flora studies for Honey Bees, and the list goes on and on.  Human's have been studied extensively as well.  So as we move forward, we will be seeing and hearing more on this DNA and Gut Flora testing and custom applications being developed. 

One of the big plagues of today is that of food. Not so much that we have too much food, which we do, we just have too much of the wrong types of foods, for us individually. For example, in a farm magazine I get, there was a quote from the International Center for Tropical Agriculture that claims that 69% of any country, yes, any country's food, originally came from somewhere else. However, from the same article, there is a claim there sourced from the USDA / FSA, (Farm Service Agency), that claims that 20% of the Ag production in the US is exported. So when you reconcile those numbers, we have a lot of food moving around and we may very well benefit from a customized diet from information extracted from DNA testing of our Gut Flora.  Also, some other information as a gee-whiz type of deal, the same article mentioned that per capita, the Chinese eat 280 eggs a year, with a total of 1 billion eggs eaten each and every day. 

So a lot of new and exciting stuff being kicked around that should change our perspective on how we eat. So until next time, chew on this stuff for a while.

Kent King