The Pathway You Didn't Know You Needed: Shikimic Acid and the Microbiome
Health buzzwords saturate medicinal conversations. All over the internet, creators post content using words like “natural” and “healthy” without defining what they really mean, leaving curious readers, like you and I, perplexed.
One such word is “microbiome”– it’s everywhere nowadays, from supplement packaging to dinner recipes. This product claims to “repopulate your microbiome”, while that product promises to “enhance microbiome activity”.
What are they really saying? What is the microbiome?
Let’s dive in. In simple terms, the microbiome refers to the populations of bacteria that live in our gastrointestinal tract, or our gut. These bacteria number in the billions, and represent a plethora of different species whose populations grow and shrink depending primarily on what you eat, but also on environmental factors, stress levels, sleep, illnesses and autoimmune issues.
So why all the hype?
A growing body of research shows that the microbiome plays an enormous role in metabolism, hormone balance, mood, cravings, and immunity. So, naturally, promoting the good bacteria and reducing the bad bacteria has become the new backbone of food and health industries.
Thanks to clinical investigation, we now know that diets poor in essential nutrients and high in simple sugars and saturated fats, inconsistent sleep, medications and antibiotics– all factors of modern lifestyles– can throw the microbiome into flux, and with it, ripple effects in all the body’s systems.
…but you don’t need buzzword products to keep your microbiome filled with good bacteria.
Start simple with what you eat: make sure your meals are complete with vegetables, fruits, complex grains, nuts and seeds and lean proteins support a stable microbiome and supplies the nutrients necessary. Fiber, an underestimated nutrient that most Americans lack, is considered the golden ticket to promoting healthy populations of “good” bacteria in your gut. While there are fiber supplements out there, save money by including fiber rich foods like legumes and whole grains into your daily diet. Don't forget– steer clear of alcohol, which is known to disrupt the regular function of the microbiome, and therefore damaging bodily functions, including immunity.
Sleep is another crucial– yet understated– factor in a healthy gut. Published research observed that fragmented and insufficient sleep resulted in “microbiome dysbiosis”, meaning unhealthy populations of bacteria– those that cause fatigue, metabolic syndrome and chronic health issues– grew, while good populations shrank. Full, long sleep cycles have the opposite effect. Aim for 8 hours of consistent sleep every night, and your microbiome will reap the benefits.
Sometimes, the microbiome responds to factors that are out of our individual control.
The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) damages the function of the microbiome during and well after infection. Populations of healthy bacteria and their synthesis activity are dramatically altered. Microbiome activity influences far more than just immunity, but also mood and energy levels. As such, people experiencing long-term symptoms of COVID-19 often have low energy and motivation.
Environmental factors may inhibit the functions and disrupt populations in the GI tract. One such factor is glyphosate– a broad-use pesticide incorporated into the production of nearly all staple grains. The FDA found that over 60% of corn and soy in the US are contaminated by glyphosate.
Why should this concern you? Because glyphosate contamination continues into the food you eat, everyday. 88% of wheat flour, 84% of pasta, 75% of oats and nearly all wheat cereal brands are contaminated by this pesticide. That’s not all: 93% of all pregnant women have traces of glyphosate in their system.
…this is where shikimic acid comes into play.
The shikimic acid pathway is the preliminary step in protein synthesis in the bacteria and fungi that populate your microbiome, which are partially responsible for the following hormones and proteins:
The coronavirus itself alters metabolism in the shikimic acid pathway, negatively changing protein synthesis in the gut for long periods.
Glyphosate has been shown to inhibit the shikimic acid pathway in bacteria, resulting in the disruption of hormonal function, a rise in the risk of various cancers, and the shortening of life expectancy.
It can be hard to eliminate the risk of contamination from our day to day lives, given glyphosate is found virtually everywhere. But in addition to the eating and sleeping advice mentioned above, essential oils can protect the shikimic acid pathway from damage. Pine needle, star anise, and carrot seed oils all contain impressive levels of shikimic acid, in addition to protective compounds that boost overall immunity.
After observing the health crisis with glyphosate and watching the quality of wellbeing fall during the pandemic, our team at LaCura developed Spike Protein Detox– a unique blend of shikimic acid-containing oils that improves protein synthesis in the microbiome to promote healthy hormonal regulation and stabilized immunity. consume 8 drops in a capsule up to 3 times daily to restore the shikimic pathway in your gut. Find Spike Protein Detox using the link below, and learn more about the microbiome on our website at www.lacuramor.com
Spike Protein Detox: