Cells Talk and Help One Another Via Tiny Tube Networks

Research on how cells interact in your body is opening new possibilities for treating diseases like cancer with the discovery that one mode of communication cells use involves nanotubes that tunnel their way to each other. While studies of how this intracellular communication works are in their infancy, Scientific American says scientists hope to exploit their findings to learn how to boost the immune system in its fight against all kinds of diseases besides from Parkinson’s to heart disease to HIV and cancer.

It’s constantly amazing to learn how different parts of our body synergistically work together to keep you healthy or to form an army of immune cells bent on fighting an illness. To this end, it’s only been a few years since researchers uncovered a direct link between the brain and the immune system, via lymphatic vessels that were not previously known to exist.

As science tries to fit the puzzle pieces together, it’s also becoming increasingly clear that your brain, your immune system and your gut microbes are intricately linked. From sleepless nights to depression to high blood pressure, we have learned that your gut health plays a huge part in how healthy you are all over. Imbalanced gut microbes, known as gut dysbiosis, have been previously linked to heart disease and high blood pressure.

New research has also connected gut health to autism, mental health, diabetes and even gene expression. And, because 70 to 80 percent of your immune system resides within your gastrointestinal tract, we also know that optimizing your gut microbiome can have far-reaching effects on addressing these issues. A vital first step toward balancing your gut flora is to eliminate sugar from your diet, especially sugars found in processed foods.

Eating fermented foods such as kefir, kimchi and sauerkraut, as well as consuming prebiotic foods like garlic, leeks and onions, can help create an optimal environment for beneficial gut bacteria, while decreasing disease-causing bacteria, fungi and yeast. Taking a probiotic or sporebiotic supplement can also be beneficial, especially during and following antibiotic treatment, because it helps restore and promote healthy gut flora.
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