In the world of Functional Medicine and Functional Nutrition, it is recognised that we are all biochemically unique. Our health today is the result of our life story, stressors, genetics, microbial balance and much more. To truly heal, rather than applying protocols, we need to get back to understanding what led to our health challenges and learn to restore balance.
WHAT DOES BIOINDIVIDUALITY MEAN?
Think of two people in the same family of who are dear friends. In one woman’s life, she develops severe acid reflux a few months after the birth of her child. Her gastroenterologist puts her on a course of antacids but it just does not get any better. In fact, it gets worse. Her dear friend advises her on home remedies for acid reflux, a miracle drink which worked magically on her, and sends her links to 10 ways to cure acid reflux. None of it work, and eventually she develops severe inflammation of her Esophageal Spinchter and secondary symptoms of nausea, dizziness, headaches, vertigo and motion sickness. In this weakened terrain of her upper digestive system, bacteria start to attack and she is advised an Endoscopy and further tests for Heliobacterpylori. A course of strong antibiotics further erodes the mucous membranes of her upper digestive tract and she is caught in a vicious loop unable to break this.
Now in the other woman’s life, she has been without any major health concerns. She has a friend who works for a company providing one size fits all nutrition to masses. All it involves is downloading a nutrition app and following the meal plan handed out. A few months after ordering this food from them, which is high in fat, her digestive system is unable to cope with this sudden drastic change in diet, and she develops acid reflux. Rather than listening to her body and easing back on this fad diet, she pushes through for a while and develops secondary symptoms of nausea, dizziness, vertigo and headaches. She is forced to meet a Gastroenterologist and is handed a prescription of Antacids and adviced an Endoscopy.
Can you see how the same diagnosis of Acid reflux, can be caused by radically different reasons? And can you see that what might have worked for your closest friend might not work for you at all, simply because your body terrain is remarkably unique? This is biochemical individuality. This is bioindividuality. Each of us is unique. We are not our diagnosis.
It’s far more important to know what person the disease has than what disease the person has – Hippocrates
Principles of Bioindividuality
• No two people with the same diagnosis have
reached that state of health due to the same set of causes
• Everyone has a unique life story and triggering events which have played a role in both the state of their health and how resilient they are. Their story has been everything from how their family life was to how they were born to what played out through their life
• Everyone has a unique Microbiome, as unique as their fingerprint. The diversity and quantum of good microbes is unique. Since our microbes are about ten times as many as the number of cells we have, they play a major role in how our health is at any given time
• Roger John Williams (August 14, 1893 – February 20, 1988), a Biochemist, who was responsible for discovering many B Vitamins first spoke about how each of us is biochemically unique. Biochemical individuality is the unique intersection between the nature of genes and the nurture of our environment and how we respond. This concept explains why no two people with the very same diagnosis respond in the same way to the same protocols.
“Just as every potter turns unique pottery based on the quality of the mud, the speed of the wheel and the artistry of their hand, the health of each of us has slowly been shaped by the quality of our food and lifestyle, the speed at which we live our lives and how our resilience has been”
What makes us Bioindividual?
- How we were born
- How our family environment was
- How our Microbiome is
- What were our illness, vaccinations and medication through life, especially childhood
- How our ancestral genetics was
- What toxins we were exposed to, from the outside world and from within ourselves, from physical toxins to emotional toxins
Rather than being overwhelmed by why the magical protocol that worked for our dearest friend did not work for us, understanding bioindividuality teaches us that we need to read our unique story in order to have that happy ending!
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