2

votes

HACK MY GUT BACTERIA?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 05, 2012 at 12:58 AM

Hi. I???ve just gotten the results in from my parasitology (stool) test and I???m hoping some smartie on PH can help me figure a couple of things out. I???ll likely still be going to see my doc in a couple of weeks but he???s sort of a quack so I???m actually looking for a new doc. So one question is sneakily many! Hooray!

RESULTS

Beneficial Bacteria

Lactobacillus species ??? 3+

Escherichia coli ??? No Growth

Bifidobacterium ??? 4+

Additional Bacteria

Gamma haemolytic Streptococcus ??? NP ??? 4+

Haemolytic Escherichia coli ??? NP ??? 4+

Mycology ??? No Growth

Parasitology EIA Tests

Cryptosporidium ??? Negative

Giardia lamblia ??? Negative

Entamoeba histolytica/dispar ??? Negative

QUESTIONS

1) How is it possible that I have NONE of the ???beneficial??? e.coli? WTF?

2) How do I increase my beneficial e.coli? I can???t find any probiotics online that sell it (Mutaflor is no longer allowed to be sold in the US cuz the FDA decided to re-classify it as a biologic).

3) Anyone know of any other ways I can introduce and support the good e.coli colonizing my gut?

4) Is it a problem to have zero Mycology (which I think is yeast and fungus)? Do I need to introduce some? Is having none optimal or should I have a smidge to little bit?

5) What type of doc should I go to to help me with balancing my gut bacteria? My osteopath is the one who got me the test but he???s the one I think is quackish (for real). I saw a gastro before that who didn???t help me even a little bit. I???m in Austin if anyone has local recommendations.

Thanks so much for taking the time to respond.

Meeps Edit: Reoccurring issues drove me to finally get the poop test done: long term depression, chronic fatigue, low sex drive, foggy brain, wind (major funk factor), D and C, bloating, addictive tendencies and dependencies, allergies. 12 months of Paleo has drastically improved my symptoms and I'm no longer ready to call it quits on life, but still having all of these issues to an annoying and sometime quite disruptive degree. Fingers are crossed that fermented foods and lots of bone broth (GAPS protocal) will do enough to heal whatever is f^@%ed on the inside. Plan to get another poop test in 6 months. Just hoping someone might have some personal experience with having zero of the marked beneficial e.coli and mycology. Not finding anything helpful on the interwebs.

C79a5b43dfc5749200bd9dcaa6bb0858

on February 05, 2012
at 05:23 PM

Hi Efaitch. I'm pretty sure because it is listed under Beneficial Bacteria and we didn't test for the bad e.coli (Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli Shiga-like Toxin).

C4134ed417dbc0a6b79ab2cee32632d3

(1801)

on February 05, 2012
at 09:09 AM

Are you sure you're interpreting the results of no growth correctly? Could it be that it means there's no overgrowth rather than none at all?

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on February 05, 2012
at 03:49 AM

If something is labelled "zero" and it is regularly part of gut flora, keep in mind that this sample is a small portion of billions of cells. Chances of it actually being zero? Probably close to zero. Also, the salad was just pointing out that there is loads and loads of bacteria in soil, and as a result loads of bacteria in vegetables. If you don't cook them, you are getting plenty of bacteria. It is just one of the many mediums that bacteria get into our bodies! Fermented foods would have much higher-than-average bacteria content than your spinach, but there is always bacteria whatever you e

C79a5b43dfc5749200bd9dcaa6bb0858

on February 05, 2012
at 03:37 AM

I'm concerned that one of the few tagged and labelled gut flora is at a zero, but I will likely just keep tabs on it with another poop-schmoop test in a year. I'm on board with your suggestions and am in the processes of starting the intro phase of the GAPS diet which will hopefully create an ideal living scenario for lots of healthy, thriving gut bacteria and mucosal lining. I am curious though about your salad suggestion. Are you saying salads are a preferable way to intro good bacteria? Can you be more specific? Thank you for your response.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on February 05, 2012
at 01:37 AM

How can the gut be more inviting if you don't eat pre-biotic and pro-biotic foods? You confused me there.

C79a5b43dfc5749200bd9dcaa6bb0858

on February 05, 2012
at 01:36 AM

Great response Rawhanna. Thank you. Unfortunately I am having problems and that's why I got the test done. I'm starting the GAPS diet in the hope that my gut and related psychology issues will remedy themselves if I can heal inside. If I have zero of something considered pertinent to producing "folic acid, the amino acids Tyrosine, Phenylalanine and Tryptophan, SCFAs and also Co-Enzyme Q10" then shouldn't I make sure I get some introduced to my system? I'm worried that 11 months of Paleo didn’t fix this so it may not happen on its own.

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5 Answers

4
518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on February 05, 2012
at 03:06 AM

If you are interested in selectively increasing just one bacterial species (like the good e.coli as you mentioned), there is no real way to go about that, unless you kill off everything and start from scratch by boiling or frying all of your food and only eating live bacteria of one type. Which no one would recommend, because it would cause a whole host of other problems. There are literally billions of bacteria cells in your gut, species that have never been discovered or named, and even the ones we can identify often have never been grown in the lab. This parasitology test is just that- it tests for parasites, and the few identifiable "good" bacteria that we have found and labelled. This is the absolute tip of a snow flake on top of an ice berg. The concept of balancing gut bacteria is a hard one, because we don't even know most of the bacteria that is in there in the first place.

Taking probiotic pills has a very low efficacy- multiple studies have shown that most of the bacteria present in the capsules are no longer viable (so you are just passing dead cells), or if they are viable they are often one strain even if the box says multiple strains on it. They also rarely contain the bacteria that is abundant in the gut. Plus, when you think about it, even if you take a pill that contains "millions" of cells, and a portion of them are viable, if you eat a salad right afterwards, in that salad you probably consumed many, many more viable bacterial cells. A probiotic pill is like a drop in the bucket- like planting a single corn stalk in the middle of a rain forrest and waiting to see a field of corn- not much is going to happen.

Eating probiotic foods has shown positive impacts on the gut. Fermented foods contain a very diverse micro-biota, with many different species in all different quantities. This makes more sense because you are introducing the bacteria to a very diverse population that is already in your gut- some bacteria will find the proper conditions to grow, other bacteria will find it unfavorable. If you have a mix of different bacteria, you will have a better chance of healthy population in the gut.

The only other truly effective way of repopulating a damaged gut is a fecal transplant, which I wouldn't recommend unless you have C.Difficile and are very, very sick. Mostly because it's illegal, so it would be up there with one of the messiest, grossest DIY projects of all time. Plus, you would have to have a very willing partner, family member, or coworker to participate.

All-in-all, if you are interested in selectively changing the composition of your gut bacteria, you won't be successful, so at the end of the day eat as many probiotic foods as you'd like, get even more bacteria by eating some salads in your spare time, and save money by not buying the probiotic pills.

C79a5b43dfc5749200bd9dcaa6bb0858

on February 05, 2012
at 03:37 AM

I'm concerned that one of the few tagged and labelled gut flora is at a zero, but I will likely just keep tabs on it with another poop-schmoop test in a year. I'm on board with your suggestions and am in the processes of starting the intro phase of the GAPS diet which will hopefully create an ideal living scenario for lots of healthy, thriving gut bacteria and mucosal lining. I am curious though about your salad suggestion. Are you saying salads are a preferable way to intro good bacteria? Can you be more specific? Thank you for your response.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on February 05, 2012
at 03:49 AM

If something is labelled "zero" and it is regularly part of gut flora, keep in mind that this sample is a small portion of billions of cells. Chances of it actually being zero? Probably close to zero. Also, the salad was just pointing out that there is loads and loads of bacteria in soil, and as a result loads of bacteria in vegetables. If you don't cook them, you are getting plenty of bacteria. It is just one of the many mediums that bacteria get into our bodies! Fermented foods would have much higher-than-average bacteria content than your spinach, but there is always bacteria whatever you e

4
54cc947a4e8ae26489a3b2517a0df032

on February 05, 2012
at 01:22 AM

Your "gut" is an ecology of multiple species of microflora, unknown thousands of types really. Nobody knows how or why ecologies really work in general and especially not in specifics, but they do know how to persuade that they do.

What is known at best today are some broad principles. One pertinent to you is that if you change the environmental conditions then species adapt--some grow and prosper, others die off. And then corporations argue that it doesn't really matter because they have a zoo those last little buggers can live in as their only hope.

So rather than think of your expensive medical tests as a call to action for how next to spend even more money to introduce insurgents (probiotics, pre-biotics, etc.) into your own gut ecology, consider what you can do to make your gut more inviting instead. Those bloody little flora are simply everywhere and if you make a nice abode for them they will come.

Of course, it's possible you could be an alien life form organically unable to support such symbiotic relationships no matter what or how you eat. But I'm betting against those odds, so consider rebalancing your daily diet from what you do now (only if you're uncomfortable and unhappy with the results you're getting) to something you prefer for better results.

Coming close but not getting too fortune cookie on you: mastering any way forward is not a skill of keeping balance, it is a skill of how to be intentionally unbalanced in the direction you intend to go. As such, not only "you are what you eat" but also "you will become what you eat next". So experiment and feel the experience of a wide variety of foods as a whole, not as shopping bags for their micro parts you think you need. Or not.

Best of luck and don't sweat the test details.

C79a5b43dfc5749200bd9dcaa6bb0858

on February 05, 2012
at 01:36 AM

Great response Rawhanna. Thank you. Unfortunately I am having problems and that's why I got the test done. I'm starting the GAPS diet in the hope that my gut and related psychology issues will remedy themselves if I can heal inside. If I have zero of something considered pertinent to producing "folic acid, the amino acids Tyrosine, Phenylalanine and Tryptophan, SCFAs and also Co-Enzyme Q10" then shouldn't I make sure I get some introduced to my system? I'm worried that 11 months of Paleo didn’t fix this so it may not happen on its own.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on February 05, 2012
at 01:37 AM

How can the gut be more inviting if you don't eat pre-biotic and pro-biotic foods? You confused me there.

0
Db59750864d5bdb919d54ab9932ee64d

on March 22, 2013
at 12:19 PM

Hello,

Which type of doctor did you go to and treatment you got? How are your symptoms ?.

0
75d65450b6ff0be7b969fb321f1200ac

(2506)

on January 31, 2013
at 05:33 PM

Beyond the results of your poop test, which really doesn't raise alarm bells, you might consider the following based on your symptoms:

1) Get tested for H. pylori. When I got H. pylori out of my system my lingering IBS issues disappeared, which was a GREAT relief since I had IBS for seven years.

2) Get your thyroid checked. Fatigue may be a sign of hypothyroidism.

3) Do elimination testing of foods to see if you are sensitive to them. These might be foods you eat sparingly, thus causing seemingly erratic IBS symptoms. Beyond the most obvious offenders (gluten, dairy) you might have problems with peanuts, eggs, soy, baker's yeast, citrus, ... and so on. (Yeah, some of these foods are not paleo but sometimes people bend the rules especially if the amount involved is minimal.) Just because you've always eaten a food doesn't mean you haven't developed a sensitivity to it at some point. (I developed a severe sensitivity to dairy at age 51.)

_Lazza

0
864649d9364a51a99217c84824dcbb4f

on January 31, 2013
at 01:16 PM

Amomg other things, my poop test also showed a lack of e coli. I was recommended Mutaflor to enhance the number of e coli.

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