Last Updated on August 18, 2020
Just three days in the hospital can change the bacteria in your gut.
People who end up in the intensive care unit (ICU) can have a massive shift in the gut microbiota within 72 hours. Hundreds of species of bugs can be wiped out in a snap, and it can take months to years to recover.
I have clients who were on antibiotics for years. It’s hard to see the destruction of beneficial bacteria that goes on day after day.
Dr. Mark Pallen, a British microbial genomics researcher at the Quadram Institute, lead the research on the impact of an ICU admission on gut flora. I suspected that there would be an impact of hospitalization, but I was taken back at the scale of the change to the flora.
To assess the impact of intensive care treatment on the gut microbiome, the team tracked 24 people admitted to a hospital in Birmingham, UK, for trauma, heart attacks, cancer, and other emergencies. The tracking was done over 10 months and included people ages 25 to 85. Many of the patients were unconscious or sedated.
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After getting permission from family members, the research team looked at stool samples. They conducted DNA sequencing on the samples and found that over 75% of the patients experienced a significant reduction in microbial diversity during their ICU stay.
The most significant changes to the microbiome were associated with IV use.
The gut is normally an ecosystem in its own right. The gut is the foundation, the root, of our health. This part of the body determines overall health. Science has allowed us to understand just how important the human microbiota is to well-being.
Unfortunately, the conventional medical system has contributed to a great deal of destruction of the gut ecosystem. Is it any wonder why people end up sicker coming out of the hospital than when they went in the first place?
That’s why I’m so healthy. I don’t go to the hospital. Try and keep out of these places if you can, okay?
If you get pumped full of IV antibiotics, you may suffer it for years.
Another researcher, Joost Wiersinga from the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam, has this to say, “Medics should do more to minimize the disruption to gut bacteria.”
I agree 100%.