Probiotically Prepared: A Challenge to Guard our Guts

Illness = Exhaustion and Expense

Doodlebug as sa baby zonked out in an office chair

Doodlebug as sa baby zonked out in an office chair

Several months ago I was at the Beeyoutiful Store-front when a customer came in seeking supplements and advice. Her entire family had Hand Foot and Mouth disease. A highly contagious virus like that in a large family is a nightmare. We discussed supplements and protocols to help the sick ones recover faster and how to keep the ones who had already gotten it from getting it again and how to keep the well ones well.

One of the elements that came into play very quickly was how difficult it can be to supplementally treat a large family with an illness like that. The very best supplements often come with a high price tag. In her case, Berrywell (famed for it’s anti viral super powers) was reserved for the Dad since his income supported the entire family and they literally couldn’t risk him succumbing. The rest of the supplements were divided out amongst the remaining children by priorities of weakest immune systems and specific vulnerabilities. One of her children was very prone to digestive problems so the best probiotics went to him and so on and so forth.

In addition to all the supplement challenges she was doing multiple loads of laundry per day, enforcing a no touch, no contact rule in a large affectionate family of children and making sure NOTHING was used after another by way of towels and other regular household items. All the while attempting to cook nourishing, time consuming meals to help the sick ones heal faster. Every few hours she was also dosing everybody with supplements, and doing various homemade remedies with the sick ones. I felt exhausted on her behalf just thinking about it all.

It made me realize yet again that prevention is by far the easier path than dealing with an illness in all it’s full blown glory. Most of us are not inclined to spend money on things we don’t need. It’s easy to warrant running out on an emergency basis and buying whatever supplements or medications we can possibly afford when we have a sick child on the line. Sometimes we have to buy items we can’t afford but we find a way to make it happen anyway even if it means debt in order to best care for our families when a sickness is sucking the life out of a child, or risking severe complications.

The old saying “An Ounce of prevention is worth a Pound of cure” holds very true in the realm of health management. In fiscal terms prevention it also makes sense. It costs less money, less time, less heart-ache, less worry less, misery and stress. The idea of health prevention is something almost universally accepted.  The concept of *how* exactly to implement health preparedness can be rather elusive on specifics though. What is especially challenging is finding things to do that will yield long term benefits vs. only the immediate protection.

Guts on Guard

In the years of reading and learning I have done in the realm of supplements and holistic health it has become increasingly clear to me just how crucial digestive health is. It’s no new-news to anybody that we live in a nation of compromised guts. With anti-acid over the counter medications now a part of many Americans daily meal routines and even more over the counter medications to counter constipation, gas, bloating, diarrhea etc. it’s taken for granted that our guts need help.

When “guts” are referred to in so flippantly exactly are we talking about? In an average adult the gut is about 30 feet, including the small and large intestines. I’ve read that the normal bacterial population in the human gut is equal to the total number of cells in our entire body. This complex hoard of bacteria is made up of more than twenty trillion cells, weighing approximately 2.2 pounds. Isn’t that incredible?

We all know probiotics are good. They’ve become so well known we hardly ever get the question anymore of “Pro-bi-what??” We know we need good bacteria. We buy those yogurts that say “live cultures” on the label. Some of us culture all kinds of foods at home in an attempt to help our guts out by diet. A lot of us have learned to take digestive enzymes to help the digestive load not be so difficult for our bodies. Supplementing with digestive enzymes and probiotics get a lot of individuals amazing relief from all sorts of digestive system ailments.

What isn’t so commonly recognized is that our guts are a huge part of our immune system. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that our digestive system and all those yards and yards of intestines are there purely to help us breakdown the foods we eat and then eliminate the waste. The truth is the whole system does so very much much more than that. Good bacteria aka probiotics are a crucial part of our guts immune boosting element.

Now, please don’t miss this next part. This is absolutely crucial to understand if we are to effectively prevent illnesses before they start.

70 to 80% of our Immune System is regulated and found in the Gut

This is the vast majority of our immune system. Right there in those squishy intestines. Regulated by our American life-style traumatized guts. Is it any wonder many of us are perpetually vulnerable to contagious illnesses? We absolutely must give our guts the immune system credit it deserves and even more than credit, actual help to do it’s immune regulating job well. We tend to be far more familiar with the concept of boosting the blood based immune system part of our bodies via well documented supplements like Elderberry, Vit. C. Vit. D. and more. But in all reality that is the smaller part of our immune system!

This is something that I deeply regret not understanding better a long time ago. When Doodlebug was a baby she had a pretty weak immune system. Little wonder since her immune system was being regulated by MY Immune system! As a person who has been on countless rounds of antibiotics in my lifetime while eating a pretty typical SAD diet it is little wonder our sweet girl got a poor health start on life.

She was sick so many times her first year. And had frequent ear infections. Thankfully we were able to quickly deal with every ear infection with garlic oil and garlic poultices so what good bacteria she had wasn’t wiped out by the necessity of antibiotics. We began supplementing her with Tummy Tune Up at 3 months old. Whenever she got a bottle we would put some Colostrum or Tummy Tune Up in it. And now, at 5 years old now her immune system is finally what I would call stable and even good. It’s taken years of good bacteria boosting and other supplementation but we can see such a big difference.

In the subsequent years between her birth and the birth of our son this past year I also had been supplementing with a lot of probiotics. Have also been eating muuuch healthier and incorporating traditional foods which include fermented foods rich in natural bacterias into our diets. Our little man is all of 8.5 months old now and has not been sick yet. He’s been healthy as a horse all the way around. A pretty stark contrast to the many health issues we had already been dealing with at this point with his sister. We are very grateful for his health and attribute it in no small part to my improved health and gut bacteria.

Prevention Challenge!

In my quest to do the most effective and practical prevention for my families health I am going to put us all on a 2 month long course of intense probiotic supplementation.  Doodlebug is getting 1 whole capsule of the Gut Guardian 25 billion. Steve and I will be taking Gut Guardian Supreme 50 billion. I believe this is the best form of prevention we can possibly take to prepare our bodies immunity for the coming months of winter illnesses. Because these bacteria will colonize and establish a healthy flora it is supplementation that will make a difference for months and months.

Gut Guardians Probiotic Blend

Gut Guardians Probiotic Blend

The Gut Guardian probiotics are one of the most potent blends available anywhere on the market today and at very reasonable cost compared to others of similar quality and potency. Beeyoutiful keeps the Gut Guardians in a freezer to help preserve the maximum potency when it arrives at their customers door. The amount of bacteria counts on the label are the guaranteed potency at the time of expiration. If they are well treated and stored at cool temps (I keep our bottles in the door of the refrigerator) and used before the expiration date they will be even more potent than indicated on the label. Please note: Because these are so very potent and immediately begin their work in the gut some individuals may experience die-off symptoms. Should this happen to you please don’t be discouraged. Drink extra water, cut back on the amount if you have to but stick with it. It is all the more indication that your body really NEEDS it.

I want my families guts and subsequently our immune systems to be  as prepared as they possibly can be for the onslaught of illnesses this Fall and Winter. We plan on starting on August 1st and going through till the end of Sept. The cost to do this will have to come out of my already tight budget. But when I weigh it against what we could save as a family over the course of long winter months with super-viruses lurking around every corner it is easy to justify. There couldn’t be a better time to do this because Steve has just put the Gut Guardians on sale for the next few months! It’s going to be a little easier for me to squeeze these into our family budgets.

The Gut Guardians come 50 per each bottle. We are planning on taking this challenge for 61 days. Since we probably won’t remember (Ok ok who am I kidding??) Since we WILL be forgetting for at least a few days of the challenge I figure the 50 capsule bottle will be sufficient. 1 for each member of our family during this challenge.

Would you consider joining us? It is my personal belief that this is one of the most effective prevention protocols possible for the health of you and your family. I’d love to do this with some fellow prevention minded friends. Let me know if you are going to join us! 😀

If you can’t afford to have your entire family do this challenge with us will you at least consider having the “gut challenged” in your family do it? You know the ones. Either weaker than average immune systems or those who constantly have digestive problems? They need it more than anybody and this could really help them to have better health for the coming year.

I’m excited. Will be even more excited if some other people do this with me. I do supplements better with encouragement and accountability. Will be starting a thread on the Beeyoutiful forums. EDIT: Got the thread started! 🙂 Click Here to post! If you decide to join us check out the thread and jump right in! 🙂 Would be thrilled to see you there.