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Germ vs. Terrain

At the start of this year, our practice encouraged patients to hit reset. We wanted them to start fresh, without the threat of illness haunting them at every turn, and instead focus on promoting optimal health and natural function.

But simple requests aren’t always so simple. In fact, it ties into an age-old debate known as Germ vs. Terrain Theory.

What is Germ Theory?

This is the idea that there is a war raging on our health at all times. It includes the belief that germs and microorganisms that invade our bodies must be destroyed to thrive and avoid unpleasant symptoms.

What is Terrain Theory?

Terrain theory is the opposite. It supports the idea that the resistance and health of the organism is important, with the response of the body being extremely normal. Instead, finding the cause of the symptoms is key.

question mark with red tack

So, Which Theory Is Right?

Like most things, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. While no one ever wants germs to be taking over and setting up shop in their body for too long, it’s also necessary for our health and development to learn how to fight these bugs off internally. In fact, our immune system is designed for exactly that.

These principles are applied in the practice every single day, when we welcome patients and work with them to overcome health struggles. The entire idea applies to more than just germs! Here are a few examples:

1. When someone injures their back, a medical doctor might prescribe bed rest to give the muscles or discs a chance to heal. However, our Calgary chiropractic team likes to encourage patients to move safely and effectively. Why? The importance of early return to activity is a predictor of whether you’ll suffer from long-term disability.

2. When someone is sick, they might be prescribed an antibiotic to battle the infection inside their body. While antibiotics certainly have their place, others might alternatively focus on using probiotic and prebiotic foods to counter the effects of the antibiotics on your own gut health. Antibiotics are designed to wipe out the “bad germs,” but they can also wipe out the “good guys,” too!

3. When someone experiences unpleasant symptoms, their goal is usually to treat them. However, treating the symptoms does not address the root cause of the issue. In fact, symptoms are a good thing that means your body is responding to injury or infection exactly as it’s supposed to! Our practice encourages limiting the use of anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, antacid, and decongestant medications, as the suppression of symptoms is not as important as treating the cause.

Living a Healthy, Happy Life

Great health takes work, and the right combination of lifestyle choices applied consistently over time. At Adjusted For Life Chiropractic Health Centre, we like to follow this formula: Intake + Elimination / Activity + Recovery x Time = Health!

Essentially, what we put into our body fuels our activity. Recovery is always needed, and adequate rest should be obtained. When you’re able to eat well, sleep well, and move often, health is within reach. Here, we’re a big fan of the quote:

First we create our habits, and then they create us.”

Give us a call if you’d like to learn more and start on your path to natural, whole-body health.

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