Using Bacteria to Create Food as Medicine
After reading Super Gut by Dr William Davis, I’m attempting to ensure I have the bacterial species that I should have in my gut.
In my mind, there are several ways of looking at this. The one end of the spectrum is to add bacteria that you should have and use that to create better health. The other end of the spectrum is to just create a healthy habitat for beneficial microbes by a healthy lifestyle and assume they’re still around and will take up residence where they are supposed to.
I don’t want to be reliant on probiotics long term, and I don’t want to spend a great deal of money testing my poop all the time to see if I have the right bacteria in my gut. So my plan is to just add keystone species to make sure I have them and then continue eating healthy. If I were to need a course of antibiotics (or would have some other major disruption) then I would probably repeat the process.
I personally do well eating animal foods so a combination of meat, organs, bone broth, some veggies (mostly fermented), dairy products, and fish make up the mainstay of my diet.
For this experiment I added about one cup of yogurt daily. I fermented it for 36 hours at 99 degrees using lactobacillus reuteri to ferment. I made it specifically following the directions in the book.
So what were the results?
The biggest change I noticed was the increase in pleasant dreams. I’ve had some pretty awful vivid dreams in the past, so this was quite a nice change. I started having vivid dreams of things like being out and enjoying nature. I did have one dream where our house was being robbed but then at the end of the dream it verged off into playing card games with the “robbers.” So overall, significant increase in vivid dreams but the dreams are enjoyable rather than traumatic.
I don’t know that it increased my empathy at all (I know it didn’t give me empathy towards Gillette…see my prior post.)
I think it may have increased my ability to say no to cheat foods higher in carbohydrates some….but it may be a placebo. There may be some benefit with weight control using this bacteria.
I didn’t notice any downsides. And the yogurt is absolutely delicious!!
So overall it was a win for me and I’ll be continuing adding other bacterial species over time.