When it comes to the way you view your body and its interaction with germs, people tend to fall into two different camps. This might explain a lot about the past year and a half.
Let's take a look at these differing perspectives about micro-organisms.
OUTDATED AND OLD THINKING
The first world view is the traditional germ theory. Though outdated and disproven, the germ theory is the idea that germs cause disease and sickness when they come into contact with the body. This worldview positions bacteria, viruses, and other micro-organisms as scary predators that have to be avoided or killed in order to stay safe and healthy. People who view their day-to-day interaction with germs this way tend to want to sterilize everything, use hand sanitizer frequently, and often behave as if "catching a cold" is a direct consequence of coming into contact with a germ or sick person.
WHERE SCIENCE AND REALITY MEET
The second worldview of human interaction with germs is built upon a common sense understanding of more recent research. The past couple of decades have provided us with a growing understanding of something that scientists have termed "the human microbiome". Microbiologists now understand that germs are literally everywhere. There are, in fact, trillions of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa in and on every single one of us. It's mind-boggling to realize that the human body is actually more microorganism than it is human cells. Some researchers believe that you are 10 times more microorganisms than you are cells.
As a simplistic example, this means that if your entire body is made up of 1 trillion cells, there are an additional 10 trillion bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, and other forms of germs in and on your body!
In light of this understanding of the ubiquity of germs, it would seem foolish to try to avoid contact with germs. There are billions of germs on your hands, under your fingernails, in your belly button, in your nose, and in your armpit! In fact, scientists have shown that different locations on your body will have certain types of microorganisms that are unique to that specific location. Researchers are learning that these different microorganisms serve a purpose and are there for a reason.
Ready for more?! There are billions and billions of germs in your digestive system. From start to finish, there are microorganisms in your mouth, throat, stomach, intestines, colon, and all the way to the end. We now understand that those bacteria are not only beneficial, but they are crucial to the healthy and normal function of the digestive system.
I don't think anyone can deny that humans have been living alongside microorganisms from the beginning of time. Some people believe that we evolved from microorganisms!
The worldview of living in balance and harmony with microorganisms empowers us to not be the victims of "invisible predators", but instead focus on taking responsibility for our health and living a lifestyle that maximizes the health of your body's human cells and fosters the growth of microorganisms that support the health of those human cells.
Upon introspection of one's own personal experiences, many people can relate to the phenomena of getting sick after a stressful or busy season of life. Though only anecdotal, my own personal experience is similar. The only time I tend to get sick is if I let my body get run-down, overworked, undernourished, or exhausted.
These ideas of the microbiome and having a worldview of not living in fear of microorganisms, but intentionally living in harmony with microorganisms is not new. Here are some great resources for further investigation and further learning. This YOUTUBE video published by NPR in 2013 does a great job explaining the microbiome. Dr. Zach Bush is a great resource for learning more about the importance of microorganisms in our daily lives.
To continue supporting the health of your body's human cells, remember to provide proper nourishment with healthy foods and quality supplements like Vitamin D to the Rescue and Magnesium to the Rescue.