A microbiome analysis provides a unique glimpse into your overall health by revealing the type of bacteria living in your intestines. Leon Baginski, MD, FACOG, in Mission Viejo, California, is on the leading edge of this new field, as new studies continue to demonstrate that you can enhance your health and prevent disease by improving the balance of bacteria in your gut. To schedule an appointment, call the office or use the online tool.
The gut microbiome refers to the trillions of bacteria that live in your gastrointestinal tract or the small and large intestines. There are good and bad bacteria in the microbiome; the bad bacteria release toxins that cause inflammation and disease.
The good bacteria, however, are vital for your health because they:
Your gut microbiome directly influences the health of nearly every system in your body.
Tissues designed to prevent harmful substances from getting into your body, while allowing healthy nutrients, medications, and other acceptable substances to pass into your bloodstream, line your entire gastrointestinal tract.
This lining, called the gastrointestinal (GI) barrier, is closely connected to the microbiome. Communication between the barrier, microbiome bacteria, and immune cells determines the strength and activity of your immune system.
Additionally, the microbiome affects the health of the intestinal barrier. When bad bacteria thrive, they can lead to a leaky gut that lets toxins pass into your bloodstream.
A microbiome analysis provides information about the type of bacteria in your gut. Dr. Baginski performs the test by taking a fecal swab to collect a stool sample. He then sends the swab to a lab, where they sequence the genes of the bacteria in the sample.
Armed with the results of your analysis, Dr. Baginski can use the information to recommend dietary changes that will improve the balance of bacteria and support your health.
While a microbiome analysis can’t yet diagnose specific health problems, and microbiome research remains a new and exciting field, scientists have already discovered a lot about gut bacteria.
They’ve identified differences in the microbiome between sick and healthy people and learned about bacteria that are associated with specific health conditions.
In addition to your immune system, your microbiome is directly related to the health of your heart and brain. It helps control blood sugar and can contribute to weight gain.
If you’d like to explore the health of your gut microbiome, call the office of Leon Baginski, MD FACOG, or schedule an appointment online.