The Gut Microbiome

Gut Microbiome

 The Gut Microbiome (formerly called gut flora), is the name given today to the microbe population living in our intestine and the quality of the conditions (mucosal lining) that house them. Within us are trillions of bacteria- their numbers outnumber our human cells by at least 10-1! Good health depends on a number of things, and a major one of these being the balance of the microorganisms that live in the digestive system. This balance that plays a myriad of roles to keep us alive, boost immunity, digest foods, create nutrients, interface with our DNA, and more. In the twenty-first century, these gut floras are under attack more than ever.

So what sort of the things damage gut flora?

• Antibiotics – most GAPS patients have been repeatedly exposed to antibiotics. Most commonly repeat ear infections. We are also exposed to antibiotics not only through our medication but also our food, as many animals are routinely treated including fish.

• Steroids

• The Pill

• Other Drugs – including sleeping pills, heartburn medication, anti-depressants, neuroleptics, and much more.

• Poor Diet – sugary and processed carbs increase the number of different fungi like Candida and promote worms and other parasites.

• Infections – typhoid, cholera, dysentery, salmonella, etc.

• Disease – diabetes, autoimmune disease, endocrine disease, obesity and other neurological conditions.

• Bottle Feeding –  babies fed by bottle develop completely different gut flora to breastfed babies.

• Old Age

• Pollution – we live in an environment that is surrounded by it.

• Surgery

• Chemotherapy

• Hormone therapy

• Radiation

• Alcohol

• Toxic Chemicals

• Dental Work

• Stress – short-term and long-term stress, both alter the gut flora.

There are three types of Gut Flora

• Beneficial Probiotics/Bacteria

• Opportunistic Flora

• Transitional Flora

In a healthy person the gut flora balance should be 85% good and 15% other. When our balance of beneficial bacteria is good, your gut flora plays its role in maintaining good health by:

• Protecting you from invading transitional flora

• Maintaining the health and integrity of your gut

• Helping you digest your food and absorb nutrients

• Producing some of your B vitamins and Vitamin K

• Helping with detoxification

• Maintaining your immune system

• Stimulating growth and birth of healthy enterocytes

Conditions that can be linked with poor gut flora

The GAPS title can stand for 2 types:

1. Gut and Psychology Syndrome

2. Gut and Physiology Syndrome

Gut and Psychology Syndrome are:

  • Dyslexia
  • Dyspraxia
  • Autism
  • Addictions
  • Depression
  • Obsessive Compulsive disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Epilepsy
  • Eating Disorders
  • Many other conditions including abnormal brain function

Gut and Physiology Syndrome;

  • Autoimmune conditions
  • Celiac disease
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Diabetes – type one
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Systemic lupus
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Autoimmune skin problems
  • Chronic cystitis
  • Nephropathy
  •  Neuropathy
  •  Asthma
  •  Eczema
  •  Allergies
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Fibromyalgia
  •  Multiple chemical sensitivity
  • Arthritis
  •  PMS – other menstrual problems
  •  Endocrine disorders – thyroid, adrenals
  •  Digestive disorders (IBS, gastritis, colitis)

Is your Microbiome out of balance?

So you have read and heard all the information above and you can see the areas where diet, lifestyle, and illness have weakened your microbiome, and you realise that to have a healthy life you need to fix that! Well the GAPS diet is one of the best diets you can do to help bring that back into balance and repopulate your intestinal tract, and protect your mental and physical health.

  • If GAPS is something that you want to do and need to know more, check out the blog and contact Christina at to help get you on the right track.