Reap what you sow

Having heard the wonderful Jamie Oliver, talk on Chris Evans’s breakfast show this morning, and his belief in food being medicine, and how we need to look more to food and what we can use it for, it brought to mind our kitchen garden here at Symprove, which is I believe is about to produce an abundance of food, because I seem to have got everything right this year ….

It has seemed to be all about creating the right environment in order to maximise the seed – but there are so many things that can make things go wrong, in particular not providing the right conditions for the seed to grow in the first place (prebiotic) and of course, it is essential to sow the right things and there are innumerable things that can go wrong, as is the case with the gut flora; this can put things completely out of sync, e.g. taking a packet of seed at exactly the right time of the season for the seed, reading the packet without my glasses on seeing a capital P, assuming it was parsnips that I wished to sow and sowing three lines of Parsley – I have never seen such a strong crop of Parsley, normally this would be just a few plants in a herb garden!!!

Essentially by accident and poor eyesight, I planted the parsnips at the wrong time, just that bit too late – you have to get everything just right, and you have to get everything just as right when you are farming your biome.

So as you all knew, the blog would come back to Symprove and the bacteria, what blog from me wouldn’t – I recently read a fascinating paper by Professor Fergus Shanahan, pointing out the importance of having not only the right bacteria but, reaffirming my view that the biome is the new frontier, the wild west of medicine. As part of his summary, he said “you mind your bacteria, and they will mind you”, you mind the time that you plant your parsnips you get a crop, if you don’t you won’t, so yes you reap what you sow, but you will reap more if you get everything just right. When you get it right in the garden, as I have with the potatoes, squash and sweetcorn, the growth is so vigorous they are able to swamp out the weeds that suck out the nutrition that we require for the crop itself; they defend themselves. The same is true, if you can get the bacteria within the gut to perform in a vigorous way, and even more so if they can work in harmony as families of bacteria, generating the conditions for their like.

If your soil is prepared properly, you cast your seed on fertile ground in the right season and the seed will thrive and grow, if you prepare the substrate properly and grow your bacteria on this fertile medium, and deliver it affectively the bacteria will thrive and grow.

So remember that our bacteria, in the main, come from within us, and we are trying to manipulate the biome by delivery from outside of us in order to balance up the system that in the urban western world is evermore depleted.

“YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW” we all know that there is a huge push towards reducing the use of antibiotics, so as to not squander this technology and further destroy our bacterial family – when it is necessary to use antibiotics, it is necessary to reboot quickly and to reseed our gut flora. If you get it right and do what I have managed to do in the garden this year, you will be growing enough to swamp out the bad guys anyway, as one of our customers, Santa Montefiore, says “I take it because good health is built in the gut”, and with that level of knowledge, what you reap is GOOD HEALTH from what you have SOWN.

Barry Smith – Chairman

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