Ying and Yang

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If it’s good for me, it’s bad for you. If we both benefit then the good and bad are evenly divided. My needs swirl around your excesses. When they say that opposites attract, I think that ying and yang more closely represent the relationship between opposites.

So, there is no such thing really as ‘all bad’. Think of the worst thing, maybe death, and very quickly when you analyze it you see that without death, life would be impossible. Everything we eat must have just been alive. In fact all of our foods are still teeming with life until the temperature gets above 150 degrees. Every bite of salad you take is swarming with life and not just the lettuce. The life you eat does not all even die when you eat it. Eating sauerkraut or drinking kombucha provides you with living organisms.  It is the point of eating these things.

Even, it turns out, viruses are not all bad. Scientists have actually just identified the first beneficial virus found in the human being.

“Viruses have gotten a bad rap,” said Ken Cadwell, an immunologist at New York University School of Medicine. “They don’t always cause disease.”–New York Times

The only viruses until now that have been isolated and named were the viruses that cause trouble; Polio, Smallpox, Measles..just to name a few. It takes a great deal of effort to find one, after all they are very small and the haystack is very large. Ken Cadwell, an immunologist at New York University School of Medicine has, by accident, discovered a virus that performs healing functions in the bowels just like gut bacteria do. The virus performs this function if the gut bacteria have been damaged leading to damaged function of the intestine…

Dr. Cadwell wondered if viruses can restore the gut when it has been disturbed in other ways. Heavy doses of antibiotics, which kill off much of the microbiome, can lead to drastic changes in the gut. Some villi die, and the population of immune cells drops. But as bacteria return to the gut, the damage gets fixed.

To see whether viruses have a similar effect, Dr. Cadwell and his colleagues gave antibiotics to normal adult mice for two weeks. When they infected the mice with murine norovirus, their guts returned to normal.

Thinking that bacteria are all ‘germs’ or that all viruses are bad has probably led to some very poor outcomes without our knowing it. An antibiotic does not discriminate against the bacteria that it annihilates. Taking antibiotic for ten days is much like burning down your house to get rid of termites. It is effective, but it kills the good with the bad. Taking antibiotics, or giving them to your children has to be a last resort kind of medicine, not the first and only approach.

If you couple antibiotics with our habit of eating only processed dead foods, then a person’s guts could become compromised as the good germs are decimated, and the foods we eat only promote the growth of bad germs. Diet soft drinks are now known to promote bad germs that cause insulin resistance after just a few doses of artificial sweetener.  Perhaps science is on the verge of finding ways to promote our gut health that do not involve crazy blunt instruments that they are using now. Scientists like Dr. Cadwell are advancing the frontiers of the gray area between good and bad, the area where ying touches and embraces yang.

About dcarmack

I am an instrument technician at the electric utility servicing the Kansas City Missouri metropolitan area. I am in the IBEW, Local 412. I was trained to be a nuclear power plant operator in the USN and served on submarines. I am a Democrat, even more so than those serving in Congress or the White House.
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One Response to Ying and Yang

  1. kscarmack says:

    Nice job… essential oils are an amazing natural way not only to help boost your immune but to also rid your body of bacteria, virus and fungal growth. Essential oils are ALIVE !

    Liked by 1 person

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