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Probiotics are only Half of the StoryModern medicine is finally coming around to what natural medicine has known for years: probiotics are a crucial part of gut health. Having a healthy, active bacterial culture in your gut is critical to everything from digestion to mental health. Study after study has shown the value of a dietary probiotic supplement.  If you’ve listened to Joe for any amount of time, that’s not news to you. What may be news is that it’s only half of the story.

A recent study has helped us understand exactly what the releationship between probiotics, gut health and fiber is… but first, a bit of biology!

The bacteria that comprise a healthy gut don’t grow directly on the intestinal wall, but something called the colonic mucus barrier. This is a thin, gel-like layer of mucus created by the epithelium in our guts. Without it, the bacteria that help us digest food would also start “digesting” our guts!

The study found that, without a high-fiber diet, otherwise healthy bacteria levels become dangerous. Those bacteria will always go after the easiest food source (typically fiberous foods). In food’s abscence, they begin digesting that important colonic mucus barrier… and without THAT, your gut becomes a time-bomb of potential ailments (including IBS, celiac disease, diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, etc.).

The take-away is this: There is no substitute for a healthy, balanced diet. As Joe often said, “EAT YOUR COLORS!” Bright colored veggies and fruits are absolutely critical to your overall health. This is a fact that cannot be overstated.