Posted: December 2, 2012

Hello Health Warrior!
Immunity is something that we hope we have in times of sickness, and flu season. Having a fine tuned digestive tract is how you can safeguard your systems from illness. It used to be thought that all you needed was a little extra vitamin C. Not so any more. If you are up on the medical and holistic findings over the last decade, then you should know that these days, a good immune system starts in the gut. Yeah, I hate that word too, however, that is the word associated with your intestinal tract. Whether your intestines let in good nutrients or harbor bad, it all has to do with your gut. Even if you think you have a stellar diet, and take plenty of supplements, you might not be absorbing them. I recently found out that my body is not utilizing or absorbing what it needs to be healthy.
Most people that live in the Midwest, (let alone Michigan) are low in vitamin D. Vitamin D plays an important role in our lives. From bones, to muscular development, this is a needed vitamin. The body makes vitamin D when exposed to ultraviolet light. The mineralization of bones is dependent on Vitamin D. This is why it is especially important for woman prone to osteoporosis. We used to think that all we needed was a glass of milk. Now we know that there is more to it than that. Vitamin D3 is particularly important in mediating intestinal absorption and utilization. Again, just because you are supplementing with these, doesn’t mean you are absorbing them. Here is where probiotics come in.
The digestive tract is the key to our health. Certain strains of bacteria are needed to maintain a healthy digestive tract. Bifido bacterium animalis is a strain of bacteria that aids in digestion. Yogurts and probiotic drinks are good sources to add to your diet on a regular basis to keep your immune system working. If you are prone to infections, and have been on antibiotics more than 3 times in one year, certain research has shown that your digestive tract can be compromised. There are many options available now to keep your immune system fine tuned. Check out the organic section in your grocery store for some tasty probiotic ready made drinks. They really do taste great! Yogurt, is always a great option also. My grandmother lived to be nearly 100 years old! She claimed that she lived that long because she made homemade Greek yogurt and ate it every day. (Wow, I guarantee that she never thought that Greek yogurt would be a top seller these days). 
A lot of us know that we need antioxidants. We have heard these words and might even “take” some. What we haven’t been aware of all along is that if we are not absorbing them, then they aren’t doing us any good. I was one of the people that thought that since I have such an amazing diet, and that I am so aware of all of these things that I could not possibly be one of the people that would have problems with this. Well, wasn’t I in for a surprise. It started with the onset of Menopause. I was already on thyroid medication and being treated for low thyroid. My mother has Hashimoto’s disease, and I had asked my doctor if maybe I too had this auto-immune disorder. Well, all it took was 15 blood samples, and a week of saliva testing to find out a host of surprises. Yes, positive for Hashimoto’s. Yes, Osteopenia, the pre-curser to Osteoporosis.  Yes, an extremely low, barely existent level of D, and Melatonin. Furthermore, my “treated” low thyroid was functioning very poorly. I was devastated. If I am “this healthy”, no wonder why most women a feeling the way they do. We aren’t absorbing our nutrients!
I am the kind of person that is the “Sherlock Holmes” of my body. The way I figure it, if I don’t take care of my health, no-one else will. I am very passionate about why the body works, and why it doesn’t. I really try to understand this too. I told this new Wellness, Anti-aging Specialist that I would be a good student, and do whatever it took to get my body functioning properly. I thought that I had already paid a lot of attention to my immune system, but now know that I needed to do more. My digestive tract needed special attention. I wanted to have superb immunity. I took her plan and put it into action.
I am now taking a live probiotic supplement 3 times daily. I am supplementing with Strontium, Vitamin K1 and D3. Melatonin (3 nightly, great sleep, and cool dreams). I also am paying extra attention to which vitamins are fat soluble and which are not. At times I think that I don’t have enough fat in my breakfast to digest some of my vitamins, and that has left me feeling horrible about an hour later. Vitamins A, D, E and K, are fat soluble. I am now on an increased dose of Armour Thyroid, for my Hashimoto’s, and hoping to change the way my body absorbs these. I also found out that Hashimoto’s Auto-immune disorder can show up in your body as having digestive disorders. I found this interesting since I really don’t have any digestive problems that most people complain of. I guess my issues were hidden. Now that I know that some of my odd symptoms could have been as a result of not getting enough of the proper nutrients into my system, I want to change that. I also want to share this information due to the fact that I know that I am not alone in this quest for understanding how to achieve great health.
Take care of your digestive tract. Even if you feel you have great health now, support every one of your systems a with a little TLC over the flu season. Live Probiotics and  the above mentioned supplements should be a part of a healthy immune system. Prevention has always been and will always be the best medicine!
Hoping that we can all remain in optimal health, now and in the future!
Please check with your family heath care practitioner before adding anything new to your health plan.
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