What exactly is the Milleau’ or the Gut Microbiome?
Gut gardening – how to understand the gut microbiome. This environment full of organisms helps in the digestion of certain kind of food when the stomach and small intestine are having difficulty in digesting consumed food. It ensures that we get the nutrients that we need. A microbiome is “the ecological community of commensal, symbiotic, and pathogenic microorganisms that literally share our body space.”
Milleau is an Old French word from mi (‘middle’ from Latin medius) and lieu (place’ from Latin locus) meaning the physical setting in which something happens or develops. Synonyms: climate, medium, environment, setting, surroundings. Related words: element, status, habitat, microenvironment.
Reviewing some ACNEM gut lectures this week reminded me that the basis of all health and the cause of disease starts with the gut and the evidence slowly unfolds.
Developing or restoring the Milleau is not like baking a cake. There is no recipe. If only we could add a pinch of A, a cup of C and sit for one hour somewhere warm – voila. But this is a far more complex medium. Each person is unique, like their genome, the complexity of variations is immense.
It is similar to a compost. A moderately good level of acid, nitrate, mineral, heat, dark – and it will flourish. Our milleau is robust, but the tipping point is critical. We discuss words like threshold and load where it can cope beautifully with challenge after challenge until one final assault is too much and like a house of cards, it disintegrates.
“The germ is nothing, the Milleau is everything.”-Louis Pasteur
Any gardener will tell you how hard it is to re-establish soil. It takes hard work, time, and constant persistence every minute to nurture a small change and fight out the invaders. Little progress is seen early and any latency causes great setbacks. The time is unpleasant – while change occurs. ‘Tending’ is a fabulous word to apply to the care needed to create a healthy gut, like a garden it needs to be pottered with consistently.
The theory of biofilm and quorum sensing is exciting although the clinical application is far from established. Sometimes this creates more confusion with such overwhelming brilliant intricacies. I decided to implement a formulated clinical approach to help patients establish a new milleau so that the health will follow.
Gardening the Gut 101:
Keeping in mind the gardening analogy – weed, seed and feed but ensuring the orchestrator (the nervous system) is first in mind.
1.Assess for serious pathologies – such as Celiac Disease, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Growths/Polyps, Ulcers, Gastritis, Malignancy. See your GP and investigate.
If you have Gut symptoms, especially new changes to gut function, get a clear diagnosis first. We have the privilege of modern medical care and not attending to a serious condition in a timely manner risks life. Investigate all new blood or mucous in the stool, bloating constipation or prolonged diarrhoea, or unexplained weight loss.
First destroy a load of overgrowth – yeasts, parasites, bacteria. If your garden is full of weeds, there is no point buying new expensive plants and adding fertiliser, without cleaning up the invaders.
To destroy these we need to identify the bugs – so test for stool parasites, ova and casts. A full digestive stool analysis is available, it is costly and only usually used when things aren’t improving as expected.
Then do a low-stress diet for one week before using a herbal formula inc: Gentian, wormwood, black walnut, goldenseal, slippery elm, marshmallow and astragalus. Formulated products such as Gammagenics. Probioplex, Gastrocarexcel, Intesticlear, and Gutrepair are also great.
Triple antibiotic therapy may be required for Blastocystis and Dientaemeba if resistant. pH – lemon/ ACV in water 15 minutes prior to meals, small quantities, fasting periods. Enzymes – digestive enzyme formulation with meals TDS.
Repopulate available probiotics, with substrate pre-biotics. Fermented foods such as saukraut and kefir are fabulous.
Determine allergy load – decide whether to eliminate and reintroduce gluten, dairy, salicylate. Adjust depending on response. This takes time and patience and often the care of a well trained nutritionist/dietician.
Continue low load of any artificial colour, flavour additives, chemical, stimulants, refined sugars grains and dairy.
A garden needs sunshine, water, rest from attack, some activity from symbiotes/soil tilling, and so do we.
The state of mind, activity, rest and recovery are essential for health.
A salad can provide vitamins, minerals, fibre, water if it is put into the right milleau – if the gut has acid, the bile has solvents, the duodenum has enzymes and the brain and nervous system can orchestrate the correct flow and timing of all these substances.
Or a salad can turn into the slime in the bottom of the crisper draw if the milleau is sick, the system is stressed and there is incorrect pH, no enzymes and overgrowth of yeast parasites bacteria.
The Milleau is everything, it is certainly a complex prescription to follow such a protocol – but the results are consistent, reliable and the increase in wellbeing and healing is broad and significant.
A healthy gut microbiome is essential and is a lifelong journey.
1. Oxford dictionary online.
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