The human microbiome is the collection of microorganisms that inhabit our bodies. More specifically, they are the group of microbial genomes that contribute to our genetic profile.
The microbiome is made up of a remarkable variety of microorganisms which includes bacteria, archaea, fungi, and even certain protozoans and non-living viruses. Out of all these, bacteria are the most prevalent.
Read on to discover some interesting facts about this vast world within you.
1. No Two Humans Have Identical Microbiomes
We all have a unique type of microbiome. Amazingly, our microbiota is so vast that it takes up a large majority of our body’s 100 trillion (or so) cells.
Our microbiome and we are linked on such a deep level that our bodies can be considered a superorganism made up of a combination of both human and microbial cells.
The distinctive nature of our microbiome is also the reason why it is often referred to as our “second self”.
2. Microbiome Development May Take Place Even Before Birth
For years, there has been a long-standing debate over whether our microbiomes are acquired at birth or if they grow in the womb.
A recent study has sought to provide some insight into this issue. Researchers have discovered a bacterial microbiome signature in developing fetuses merely 11 weeks post conception.
Early exposure to specific environmental factors might alter our microbiota and lead to resistance to specific allergies.
The microbial variety of a baby’s gut microbiome is hugely promoted by breast milk. Environmental exposure plays an essential role in shaping the skin microbiome’s formation.
3. The Microbiome is Our Body’s Intrinsic Defender
Every organ in our body serves a purpose. The microbiome contributes to our body in multiple ways, such as aiding digestion, preserving the equilibrium of our skin, educating our immune system, and synthesizing certain vitamins.
After our skin, the microbiome is our body’s second largest organ, weighing around 2 kilograms. This essential organ acts as a natural defense against numerous diseases.
When cared for properly, the microbiome remains balanced. This results in a strengthened immune system, regulated metabolism, and improved skin and oral health.
4. Our Microbial Composition is Like Our Fingerprint
The human microbiome is present in the stomach, nose, mouth, lungs, skin, colon, and genitals.
Each of these areas has its particular composition of microbes. For instance, our oral microbiome primarily consists of the bacteria Streptococcus. But the ratio of this bacteria changes from person to person.
While some bacteria are frequently found in one area of the body, they may not be as prevalent in other parts.
5. Diet and External Factors can Affect the Microbiome
Our diet has a direct bearing on the make-up and quantity of the microbiome in our gut. Eating healthy foods like soups will promote the production of healthier bacteria.
Every person is different. Even if two people have the same foods, they may still experience different changes in their microbial composition. This just goes to show the personalized nature of our body’s microbes.
External factors can also heavily influence the behavior of our microbiota. For instance, a study has shown that swimming in ocean water can cause considerable changes in our skin microbiome. These changes were present for at least up to 24 hours.
Given this crucial finding, it’s important to eat mindfully and be conscious of the activities you partake in.
6. Microbial Diversity Will do Wonders for Your Health
Remember that your microbiome will unavoidably consist of both good and bad bacteria. What’s important is making sure that the good ones outweigh the bad ones.
A conclusive result hasn’t been found about the optimal profile of a healthy microbiome. However, we know that the absence of microbial diversity, especially in our gut, can lead to numerous disorders, like atopic dermatitis, obesity, diabetes, and asthma.
For strengthening your gut microbiome, you should consume more fruits and vegetables. To keep your oral microbial composition in check, you should take the best dental probiotic supplement. We highly recommend Smile Brilliant Dental Probiotics to build a healthier oral microbiome.
Our microbial health has been ignored for much too long. It’s time we start taking it seriously. We can maintain a healthy microbial balance by supplementing a nutritious diet with high-quality probiotics.