There’s a new buzzword floating around the nutrition world right now called Microbiome.

Each of us lives with trillions of bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi in and around our bodies.
We all have a unique set of cells in and around our skin, our mouths, our gut, etc. In each area, these cells are known as microbiota — for example, the “oral microbiota.” Together, they make up the microbiome, said to be the largest organ in the body.

The microbiome starts developing at birth and continues to change until about age three.

During birth, a baby moves from a sterile environment in utero, down the birth canal where he or she is exposed to and colonized with their mother’s microbiota. Within the first hour of life, a baby can be exposed to a billion bacteria.

We know the microbiome plays a role in every system of our body and is important in maintaining good health. It may also influence a staggeringly long list of illnesses and disorders that affect billions of people around the world.

Does the microbiome cause disease? If we change the bacteria in our bodies can we prevent disease? It’s an emerging area of research which is illuminating the incredibly complex relationship between our microbiome and our health.

This emerging research will inspire further understanding between medicine, Holistic health and disease prevention.

The new Western Canadian Microbiome Centre will include state of the art equipment, techniques and technologies to help researchers find answers about the microbiome’s influence on our health and wellness. When the facility is completed in May 2017, it will be the largest academic germ-free facility in Canada and perhaps the world.

Shana Daniel
Registered Holistic Nutritionist

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