Microbes From Soil & Human Health

by Susan
on 09 June 2017

The truth is, soil doesn't it just allow us to grow food, it actually plays a vital role in human health. Now soil does allow thousands of species of plants to grow, which does replenish the earth's oxygen of which we are dependent on. However, this is not quite what we are referring to. You may be surprised to learn just how many medical benefits getting your hands dirty in organic dirt may have. In fact, you’ll quickly understand why gardening, even if it starts with a few indoor plants, is such a popular hobby among Canadians. 


Microbes Have Antidepressant Qualities

Many people are intrigued to learn that gardening can actually increase your happiness. The truly amazing part is that it’s not the plants, but rather the soil, that makes the difference. The Mycobacterium vaccae, commonly found in soil, actually mirrors the effect on neurons that antidepressant drugs like Prozac offer patients. This bacterium that is plentiful in most soils may simulate serotonin production as well, which can make you relaxed. This makes gardening a great solution for those who suffer from depression, anxiety, or high amounts of stress. Interestingly, the same bacteria are also being studied based on scientific evidence that they improve cognitive function, Crohn’s disease, and even rheumatoid arthritis.


Due To Industrial Agriculture, Our Microbes Intakes Are Limited

It may surprise some readers to learn that our body’s microbes originate in the soil! In fact, the natural process of replenishing our body’s microbes was through our food. Food absorbed naturally occurring microbes from the soil and upon consumption, so did we. However, since World War II the popularized peak in industrial agriculture that we see today has altered that process. Through the use of fertilizers and biocides (pesticides, fungicides, herbicides), we have effectively killed the mycorrhizal symbionts that had previously regulated the uptake cycle. These microbial communities were how we received the flora in our gut that help maintain healthy digestion. The high use of pesticides has resulted in the plants instead containing high levels of the nutrients added through fertilizer (typically nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium), but little to none of the other 27 nutrients that previously occurred naturally in food from the unaltered soil. 


Can Organic Make A Difference?

When it comes to organic soil, man people don’t realize how vital of a role it can play in the nutrients of their food. One of the main differences between organic and nonorganic foods is the use of chemical pesticides. The first thing you need to understand is that pesticides, in comparison to most chemicals we come in contact with daily, are deliberately added to the environment for the purpose of killing or injuring some form of life. This is both directly and indirectly dangerous to human health. However, organic soil allows the microbes to flourish, allowing for the natural flow of microorganisms from food to humans through consumption. This is among the many reasons that Canadians choose to grow using organic soil when given the option. 


As humans, our health is one of the most valuable factors in the longevity of lives. What we choose to eat directly affects our health in a variety of ways. By choosing the organic lifestyle, you can ensure that you are ingesting the foods that are the most nutrient dense and as close to what our ancestors ate as possible. Interrupting the natural flow of microbes can lead to a variety of illnesses and disease. This is why we believe part of our job is to help inform Canadians about the benefits of choosing to live an organic lifestyle. If you are interested in learning more about the benefits of microbes or where you can purchase Pefferlaw Peat and Delicious Dirt products, please feel free to contact us today.

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