Chronic disease takes an enormous toll on individuals, families and societies as a whole. Chronic diseases, also known as noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), are the leading cause of mortality in the world killing 41 million people per year, equivalent to 71% of all deaths globally. (World Health Organization/Noncommunicable diseases.) In the last 20 years, the prevalence of chronic disease in the United States has grown by a steady 7 to 8 million people every 5 years. 

 

Today, chronic disease affects 50% of the U.S. population, and its clinical care consumes more than 85% of health care costs. It is estimated 133 million Americans have at least one form of chronic disease – 15 million higher than just a decade ago and is expected to reach 170 million by year 2030

 

~ World Health Organization/Noncommunicable diseases. 
~ American Hospital Association – Focus on Wellness. 

Inflammation is our body’s first line of defense against injury or infection. Acute inflammation is necessary to protect us from a cut, a cold virus, or a bug bite. 

 

But when inflammation goes into overdrive and becomes long-term it becomes a problem. Steady damage from chronic inflammation silently leads to devastating chronic disease. 

 

There are close to 1,000 different species of bacteria living within our gastrointestinal tract, primarily our colon. These microorganisms within our gut have a vital role in controlling inflammation

Chronic Disease and The Microbiome

 

Our gut microorganisms are the COMMAND CENTER -
training and directing the immune system and how it responds.

When there is damage to our gut microbiome either through internal or external factors such as poor diet, medications, sedentary lifestyle, toxins, stress, and environmental agents – an imbalance to our protective microorganisms occurs. 

 

This imbalance is known as dysbiosis. The population of protective (‘healthy’) bacteria decreases and the harmful (‘unhealthy’) bacteria start to thrive leading to overgrowth of harmful bacteria or the wrong species of bacteria. 

 

Long-term dysbiosis, and a lack of diversity of the gut microbiota, causes damage to the protective mucosal lining of the gastrointestinal tract. The damaged lining becomes inflamed and the tight junctions between the cells “open wider” increasing intestinal permeability. 

 

Increased intestinal permeability is commonly referred to as ‘leaky gut’, allowing elements from the gut to enter the bloodstream promoting widespread inflammation. 

IMBALANCED GUT MICROBIOME + DAMAGED GUT LINING =
INCREASED INFLAMMATION = CHRONIC DISEASE

chronic inflammatory disorders are on the rise

“The incidence rate of chronic inflammatory disorders is on the rise in the pediatric population. 

 

Crucial role in the interactions between an altered intestinal microbiome and the immune system in the development of several chronic inflammatory disorders in children — such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), autoimmune diseases, diabetes, and celiac disease.” 

 

~ Frontiers In Immunology 

“Continued dysbiosis has been associated with multiple chronic diseases such as obesity, cardiometabolic diseases, inflammatory bowel disease, cancer, autoimmune diseases, dementia, and others.” 

 

~ Frontiers In Microbiology

Frontiers In Microbiology

CHRONIC DISEASE STATES
associated with
THE MICROBIOME

  • Cardiovascular Disease 
  • Cancer 
  • Diabetes 
  • Obesity 
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease 
  • Ulcerative Colitis 
  • Crohn’s Disease 
  • Asthma 
  • Food Allergies 
  • Periodontal Disease 
  • Osteoporosis 
Chronic Diseases States associated with The Microbiome
  • Multiple Sclerosis 
  • Rheumatoid arthritis 
  • Lupus 
  • Thyroiditis 
  • Gout 
  • Autism Spectrum 
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder 
  • Mood Disorders 
  • Depression 
  • Alzheimer’s Disease 

Where there is one chronic disease, there is a greater increase of developing multiple.

“Unhealthy gut microbes generate metabolites that drive the progression of several cardiovascular pathologies like atherosclerosis, hypertension, heart failure, and type 2 diabetes.

 

The gut microbiome functions like an endocrine organ generating bioactive metabolites that directly or indirectly affect host physiology,”

~ W.H.W. Tang, M.D. 
Cleveland Clinic. Nat Rev Cardiology. 
“Gut Microbiome: Next Frontier of Precision Medicine.” 

“The loss of protective bacteria means the immune system can’t regulate inflammation.  Inflammatory chemicals escape from gut tissue to other parts of the body. 

 

If the microbial community continues to be disrupted, these inflammatory cells can attack joints and set the stage for inflammation to affect internal organs.” 

~ Dr. Jose Scher, MD. 
Director Microbiome Center for Rheumatology and Autoimmunity, 
NYU Langone Health 

How do we prevent this epidemic?

IT STARTS WITH THE HUMAN MICROBIOME.
It is the mastermind to either promoting OR preventing chronic disease.