We are less than 1% human, if you factor in that more than 99% of the DNA contained within us belongs not to us, but to the microbes which we effectively host.
I find the emergent biological phenomena of a second, third and fourth brain fascinating. I have enjoyed researching and discussing the Newtonian, Cartesian-Darwinian or even Copernican biological approach to the human body. I don’t see them as sufficient for the comprehension of ill health. So where to then?
Since starting this publication in the spring of 2000, I was introduced to a new paradigm in medicine – an emerging paradigm that can now stand upon a staggering body of research supporting it. You only need to review the Ruggiero-Klinghardt (RK) Protocol and the Immortalis Protocol of molecular biologist, Prof. Marco Ruggiero, to join my feverish enthusiasm of what has emerged. The microbiome was only discovered in 2010! And it is not just a colony of good bacteria (gut microflora) but a complex organ that is responsible for the development and function of all the other organs and systems, from our brain to the immune system. Prof. Ruggiero, author of the book Your Third Brain, did not personally discover the microbiome, but he did identify it as the third brain.
Prof. Ruggiero has innovated a microbial formula (a combination of the most advanced medical procedures in combination with the interactions, approaches and regimens) which can not only arrest human bio-deterioration and degeneration, but will systemically reverse the effects of human ageing! Hold on to your hats – or is that your microbiome…?
This microbial formula augments gut-manufacture of the Klotho long-chain protein … the fairly recently discovered ‘gene of immortality’. The Immortalis Klotho Protocol, as it is now coined, will (according to the Humanitad organisation) be ‘dispensed for the next two to three years within a measured and strictly limited client-base in various nations. We will be studying its effects upon divergent genomes, amongst people enjoying different lifestyles, dietary configurations and set within differing environmental conditions’.
According to the Human Microbiome Project (HMP),1 bacterial genes outnumber human genes approximately 360 to 1 and more than 10 000 microbial species occupy the human ecosystem.
HOW TO TEST FOR LEAKY BRAIN
Gastroenterologist Dr Neil Nedley is outspoken regarding the gut-brain connection and recognises that ‘many gastrointestinal illnesses actually had their origin in the mind, and gut issues can affect the mind. Healthy bacteria can produce cytokines that help the brain produce serotonin. A healthy gut can produce a healthy brain.’
You may think this strange but inflammatory conditions can make the blood-brain barrier hyperpermeable. It’s called leaky brain! Leaky gut and leaky brain go hand-in-hand. Occludin and zonulin are two proteins that help determine both gut lining and blood-brain barrier permeability. Elevated antibodies against these proteins are one way to discover the presence of leaky brain syndrome. High levels of the amino acid homocysteine have been linked with blood-brain barrier damage. Elevated levels of the protein zonulin (your gut's ‘gatekeepers’) in the blood stream are a sign that you are at risk for leaky gut.
According to functional medical doctor William Cole, the presence of lipopolysaccharides (toxins given off by some of your gut bacteria) proves ‘a breach of your protective gut lining’. It’s important to note here that autistic patients have low levels of various strains of Bifidobacteria strains. The imbalance of bacteria precedes the development of autism, resulting in leaky gut, which may contribute to brain inflammation and ultimately then the development of autism.
GUT HEALTH = MENTAL HEALTH
Gut health cannot be emphasised enough, especially in people with any form of mental condition (depression, anxiety, brain fog). Antidepressants can be ineffective because a possible underlying brain inflammation goes undetected. Bacterial genes synthesise neurotransmitters acetylcholine, dopamine, GABA, serotonin, and other molecules with neuroactive properties that can interact with the enteric nervous system, and the co-ordinating neurons of the intestines through the vagus nerve, transmitting these messages to the brain.2
Various disease conditions of the gut, such as leaky gut, diverticulosis, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), coeliac disease and Crohn’s disease exist as symptoms of gut imbalance. When we look at gut health, we need to look at the gut biome (bacteria) known as microbiome. Now there is also the mycobiome which refers to fungus in the gut, as well as the virus-biome referred to as the virome.
These microbes are represented by bacteria that are commonly found in soil and water. They enter the body through oral consumption or inhalation, and are transported to the brain by cells of the immune system. According to an article, Fecal Microbiota Transplantation and the Brain Microbiota in Neurological Diseases:3 ‘fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) could be considered for neuropsychiatric disorders. FMT may also thus help correct brain dysbiosis, provided that the functions of the cells of the immune system, and of the lymphatic brain drainage, are not compromised.’ Lack of diversity of gut bacteria can be the reason some people struggle with alcohol4 addiction, depression, allergies and even obesity!
Did you know that there is no fibre in animal products and that your body cannot digest fibre? It is the bacteria in your gut that digest fibre. A by-product called short-chain fatty acids lower the levels of inflammation and risks of chronic disease that can also potentially lower your chances of depression.
EMF SENSITIVITY AND PROBIOTICS
The knowledge we have now regarding the effects of electromagnetic fields on the human microbiome may assist us in reassessing our health risks and in looking for different factors in determining the cause of disease. Dr Thomas Rau, from The Paracelsus Clinic in Switzerland, discovered that symptoms of electromagnetic sensitivity can be reduced by providing gut barrier support in the form of probiotics.
GLUTEN OR GLYPHOSATE SENSITIVITY
Are we possibly reacting to a sensitivity to the pesticide spray on our grains, and not the actual gluten in the grain or a combination of the two? New York Times bestselling author and renowned neurologist Dr Perlmutter’s book, Grain Brain, shows that the fate of your brain is not in your genes; it's in the food you eat.
Symptoms of digestive trouble
- Brain fog and lacking mental clarity
- Pain in your stomach
- Bloating after a meal
- Weight gain or loss
- Nutritional deficiencies due to malabsorption
NATURAL SOLUTIONS TO STARVE BAD BACTERIA
There is a body of thought arguing for the starvation of the bad bacteria, before increasing the good bacteria. But starving the bad bacteria is impossible without starving the good bacteria. This will certainly help SIBO sufferers. Don’t think antibiotics is the answer! Not only because of the risk or resistance, but the many side effects, including the lesser-known ones. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, every time you take an antibiotic, it increases your chance of depression by 25%. Two or three rounds of antibiotics can double your risk. Recurrent antibiotic exposure is also associated with increased risk for anxiety.5
How to go about it then? Water fasting starves bacteria as most foods feed bacteria. Do not do this without consulting a medical practitioner. Consuming broths, such as bone broth and for vegetarians, mineral broth and potato broth, could be of great value in achieving this goal.
Mineral broth contains organic vegetables such as carrots, onions, leeks, celery, garlic, parsley, red potatoes, sweet potatoes, bay leaves, juniper berries, sea vegetables such as kombu and so on. For a great recipe, Google Magic Mineral Broth Recipe.6 Broths will starve all bacteria and you won’t become electrolyte deficient. It is recommended to pair up by taking antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral herbs. Reducing the biome count right down needs to be followed by consuming loads of probiotics. Unsweetened yoghurt and fermented foods (such as kefir, sauerkraut or kimchi) can be taken in large amounts as well as pre- and probiotics. Fermented foods are the first man-made processed foods we now call probiotics. I do need to mention that getting rid of parasites is so important to restore gut health, but there is no room here to go into more detail.
SPECIAL MENTION OF A SPECIFIC PROBIOTIC
Don’t let the name scare you, but I just have to mention a particular probiotic Kluyveromyces marxianus. Why? To show the intelligence of microbes. This one (let’s call her KM) can decrease systemic inflammation, produce acetate that will be converted into ketone bodies, and nutritional ketosis of a ketogenic diet will be achieved. Furthermore, KM produces an enzyme lactase, necessary to digest lactose.
Did you know that chondroitin sulphate is a prebiotic used by the gut microbes to reconstitute the gut balance?
All primate brains contain microbes and they are notably absent from the brains of other mammals. The influence of the microbes in our brain is immense, and also instrumental in the evolution of the human brain as we know it today. Evidently, microbes began to appear in the brains of primates when fermented foods were consumed for the first time. And yes, that includes beer and wine! This leads to the colonisation of these microbes and eventually to the evolution of man.
A specific gene, studied by Prof. Ruggiero and his team, that is responsible for human evolution, is called RUNX2 (Runt related transcription factor 2) and involved in autism, but also unique because its expression (the way it works), according to Prof. Ruggiero, is regulated by probiotics, specifically one of the most common probiotics: Lactobacillus rhamnosus. Makes you think, doesn’t it?
Editor’s note: For more articles on probiotics, see: The Microbiome & Internal Balance and The difference between prebiotics & probiotics
- The Gut Microbiome and the Brain. J Med Food. 2014;7(12):1261-1272.
- Choi HH, Cho YS. Fecal microbiota transplantation: current applications, effectiveness, and future perspectives. Clin Endosc. 2016;49:257-265.
- Antibiotic exposure and the risk for depression, anxiety, or psychosis: a nested case-control study. J Clin Psychiatry.2015;76(11):1522-1528.