Why the Gut is Primary to Your Health

According to Dr. Tom O’Bryan, the autoimmune mechanism is the number one cause of illness and death in the world1 and the three conditions that lead to autoimmunity are:

  1. Genetic vulnerability
  2. Environmental triggers
  3. Permeability of the intestinal walls and of the blood-brain barrier

He insists that we have to create an environment in our micro-biome so it’s strong enough to withstand the assault of environmental triggers and prevent permeability.

I have two goals for this post: to make that last sentence easy for you to understand and to encourage you to learn everything you can about healing your gut.


The human micro-biome is the community of microbes that dwell inside, on, and around each of us. Microbes are single-cell organisms so tiny that millions can fit into the eye of a needle. They are so small that there are more of them on your hand than there are people on the entire planet!2

Medical science has only recently recognized the importance of our micro-biome to our health. Ninety percent of all literature about the human micro-biome has been published in just the last 5 years.3


Permeability is when the walls of your intestines or your blood-brain barrier let things pass through them that they shouldn’t.

Science is beginning to learn that a damaged micro-biome weakens the immune system and increases the likelihood of permeability.

Learn more:

  • In this 53-minute interview, Dr. O’Bryan discusses intestinal permeability with Pedram Shojai on the set of the Urban Monk TV show.
  • On this 75-minute podcast from Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof Radio, Dr. David Perlmutter teaches about permeability of the blood-brain barrier.

Environmental Triggers

“We’ve lived in a symbiotic relationship with the bugs and bacteria (microbes) in our gut (micro-biome) for millions and millions of years,” says Dr. Perlmutter. “It is only very recently that we are threatening that relationship and we’re seeing the health consequences.”

The modern world we live in is loaded with damaging substances that assault and weaken our micro-biome. These damaging environmental triggers include:

  • Antibiotics
  • Sugars
  • High-levels of carbohydrates
  • Bad fats
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Acid-blocking drugs
  • Non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen
  • Bad gluten: wheat, rye, and barley
  • Chemicals in our food, household products, and environment

Relentless Assault

The human body has a miraculous ability to heal itself. However, there is a limit. When a constant barrage of damaging environmental triggers exceeds the intestinal wall’s or the brain-blood barrier’s capability to heal themselves, they give up their defense, and let things pass through them that are not supposed to pass through.

Permeability (of your intestinal walls or your blood-brain barrier) causes cellular inflammation, which can lead to a long list of health consequences, including:

  • Alzheimer’s
  • Autism
  • Parkinson’s
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Diabetes
  • ALS
  • Cancer

This is the status quo of the health of our modern society. We are in a mess!

Restore the Gut

There are simple steps you can take to cultivate a healthy environment in your micro-biome, which can restore its ability to defend your health against damaging environmental triggers and prevent permeability.

  • Learn everything you can about healing your gut
  • Be extremely judicious in using antibiotics
  • Reduce or eliminate damaging environmental triggers such as those in the list above
  • Eat fermented vegetables (my favorite is Eden Organic Sauerkraut… my wife and young daughters love it too)
  • Eat healthy fats
  • Eat pre-biotic4 fiber
  • Eat organic foods
  • Add a wide-spectrum probiotic

I am determined to learn everything I can about healing my gut, and I’ll keep sharing what I learn with you.

More Resources

Here is a list of resources that help explain why the gut is primary to your health. I hope I have inspired you to learn more.

  • Well.org: Is Gluten Really That Bad? It Depends…
  • Bulletproof Radio: Episode #250 with Dr. David Perlmutter
  • Healthimpactnews.com: Sauerkraut: Anti-cancer Fermented Food that Restores Gut Flora
  • Newsmax.com: 5 Vital Probiotics That Boost Your Brainpower
  • Mindbodygreen.com: Top 10 Probiotic Foods To Add To Your Diet
  • Mother Nature Network: Surprising Health Benefits of Sauerkraut

Image via Death to the Stock Photo | This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you click and then purchase we will receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you). Thank you for reading & supporting Happy Living!

  1. Well.org: Is Gluten really that bad? It depends…
  2. Microbeworld.org: What is a Microbe?
  3. Bulletproof Radio: Episode #250 with Dr. David Perlmutter
  4. Wikipedia.org: Prebiotic (nutrition)

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