Good health begins with the health of your gut. If your gut is damaged or you have an abundance of pathogenic microorganisms it is impossible to be healthy. Imbalances in the intestinal terrain may lead to or contribute to the propagation of yeast overgrowth, parasites, and harmful bacterial growth. Various herbs can be used to reduce pathogenic species and promote a healthy microflora balance.
Intestinal pathogens are abnormal and unwanted inhabitants of the gastrointestinal system that have the potential to cause damage to their host. They consume nutrients from the foods we are eating and they puncture holes in the intestinal membrane. Humans can play host to several hundred different types of parasites, pathogenic bacteria and yeast.
This internal ecosystem is dependent upon certain beneficial species being widespread and in control. These symbiotic microbes are progenic in that they support life. These organisms provide a protective barrier that guard the intestinal wall against pathogenic bacteria, parasites, fungi, viruses and environmental toxins. These organisms also create anti-microbial substances that destroy pathogenic organisms.
The power of anti-microbial herbs
Various different forms of herbs have anti-microbial factors that reduce pathogenic bacteria, yeast and parasites. These herbs can be used to reduce the microbial load and be an important part of re-establishing a healthy microbial balance. Below are some of the many powerful anti-microbial herbs found in nature.
Black walnut extract
Numerous studies have found juglone, a cytotoxic compound found in walnuts, and most predominately in black walnuts, to have powerful anti-microbial, anti-parasitic properties. This is a key parasite-killing agent and it also acts as a mild laxative that helps expel the waste products of dead bacteria and parasites.
Caprylic acid is also used in the treatment of some bacterial infections. Due to its relatively short chain length it has no difficulty in penetrating fatty cell wall membranes, hence its effectiveness in combating certain lipid-coated bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus and various species of Streptococcus. It is also especially good as an anti-yeast agent with profound abilities to destroy the pathogenic Candida Albicans species.
Garlic is one of nature’s most powerful immune boosting secrets. Garlic contains over 100 biologically active components including alliin, allicin, alliinase and unique sulfur compounds. Researchers have found garlic to be more powerful at destroying pathogenic bacteria than the popular anti-biotics penicillin and tetracycline.
Oregano is an extraordinarily powerful natural anti-biotic. Oregano has been found in a recent study to be significantly better than all of the 18 currently used anti-biotics in the treatment of MRSA staph infections. The strong phenol anti-oxidants in oregano destroy pathogenic bacteria, viruses and yeasts.
Goldenseal contains the chemical berberine, which has strong anti-microbial effects against bacteria, parasites and yeast. For example, it can prevent the bacteria E. coli from binding to urinary tract walls. Berberine also has properties that can lower blood pressure and improve irregular heartbeats.
This is another powerful anti-microbial that is effective at regulating healthy gut microflora and preventing urinary tract infections. The active compound in this is arbutin which is primarily responsible for the antimicrobial activity. Bearberry also contains therapeutic compounds such as ursolic acid and quercetin.
Pau D’Arco is the bark of a South and Central American tree called Taheebo. It is known as a powerful anti-microbial that is especially effective against yeast and parasites. It’s main constituent is lapachol which is a quinone and a recognised anti-tumour agent that is found in the wood and bark of the Taheebo tree.