We have always thought the only way to get drunk is alcohol consumption, well, not anymore. Welcome to a whole new world of microorganisms that, under rare conditions, produce levels of alcohol higher than one might have perceived possible.
As you might expect, this phenomenon puzzled doctors for years—until recently, a new study published in Cell Press has just begun to explain how and why this happens.
It was first seen in a 27-year-old man in China, who had a daily diet full of sugar with high-carbs. The man was faced with symptoms of unexplained intoxication which were traced to have been going on for about a decade. Upon further disappointment from doctors after doctors, his condition only worsened.
At first, he was faced with questions disregarding his honesty on the matter of alcohol consumption but after thorough research and a bunch of tests, the doctors discovered that his blood alcohol rose to 400 milligrams per deciliter on consumption of a meal with high sugar levels, and that’s no everyday buzz either.
As Jing Yuan, lead author of the study and microbiologist at the Capital Institute of Pediatrics in Beijing explained, “That’s equivalent to 15 shots of 40% [80-proof] Whisky.”
Finally, the doctors explained: The man had several traces of Klebsiella pneumoniae in his gut. It’s a Gram-negative, non-motile, encapsulated, lactose-fermenting, a facultative anaerobic, rod-shaped unhealthy bacterium that can produce up to six times more alcohol than the typical gut bacteria found in a healthy person’s [Gastrointestinal tract]GI tract.
The complex structure of the gut has been a subject of increasing popularity as a whole lot of research has been going on in the relative field. For about the past twenty years, a huge number of studies have shown an immense connection between gut health and the immune system, mood, mental health, autoimmune diseases, endocrine disorders, skin conditions, and cancer.
Our digestive system was considered quite simple at one point in time. It only consisted of a long tube for our food to get processed and pass through. On the contrary, it’s the convoluted structure itself is proof of the mysteries that live inside a man’s gut.
For starters, there are approximately 300 to 500 species of micro-organisms living inside the digestive tract known as the “Gut Bacteria”.
Dr. E. M. Quigley’s study on gut bacteria in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology shows that a wide variety of these good bacteria in your gut can boost immune system functions, help you fight dangerous diseases, maintain your blood pressure and help keep the sugar levels stable, and also prevent obesity.
That being said, it is still important to know that some bacteria can be dangerous and cause various diseases including liver failure, if not being treated with utter care.
Symptoms of Gut Bachteria
Klebsiella pneumoniae can affect other parts of your body too, for example, it can infect your wounds and scars. You could also get an infection in your:
- Blood (bacteremia or septicemia)
- Brain (meningitis)
- Heart (endocarditis)
- Skin (cellulitis)
- Urinary tract (UTIs)
Symptoms can’t always tell the cause, so, it’s advised to visit a doctor and get a complete medical checkup. If the doctors find klebsiella to be the cause of your symptoms they would often prescribe antibiotics to help fight the bacteria.
How do we improve our gut health:
- Lower your stress levels — Chronic stress trends can be very problematic for your mind and in this case, for your gut health as well. It is very important to make sure you keep stress strains under control. The experimented ways proven to be helpful are: having quality time with your family and friends, exercising on a regular basis, laughing and cracking jokes, and dancing or doing other recreational activities.
- Avoid smoking — We are very well aware of the hazards smoking can cause. Until now, it was only thought to be causing lung and throat cancer but apparently and shockingly enough, it can also cause stomach problems, and if not treated immediately can turn into cancer.
- Get enough sleep — Unattended sleep routine is supposedly tiring but that’s not it. Less sleep can affect your overall bodily functions including gut health. So, it is recommended to have 5 to 8 hours of sleep every night.
- Maintaining a healthy diet — Not just to have a low-calorie diet but also to maintain a diet that’s beneficial for your gut and overall body. This means minimizing the high-sugar intake and maximizing a vegetarian’s diet routine. While we focus on what not to eat, we should also worry about what we are supposed to take. This must include a diet with probiotics, fermented foods and prebiotic fibers.
- Do not take unnecessary medicines — Sometimes, its essential to have antibiotics but overuse can cause a magnificent public health concern as it can lead to antibiotic resistance causing super-bugs and other significant health problems.
Maintaining the above-mentioned things can help you have a healthy immune system, it can result in better growth and health, and fight the unhealthy bacteria living inside a person’s GI.