First you collect it, then you mix it, then you strain it, then you pop it in! No, I’m not talking about some kind of cake mix. Rather, it is the watered down version of a fecal transplant, and it’s saving lives across the world.
Fecal microbiota transplantations involve transferring a ‘healthy’ stool from one patient to another. The recipient usually has a compromised gut microbiome. A healthy gut is the ultimate when it comes to good health. Gastrointestinal health can be the root cause for physical problems as well as mental ones, causing your stomach to dictate your mood.
‘Most people don’t even realise that a whopping 80 percent of the immune system is located in the digestive system.’
Most people don’t even realise that a whopping 80 percent of the immune system is located in the digestive system, making a healthy gut a major focal point if you want to be on your A game and feeling good.
So what’s the down and dirty on this curious procedure?
The donor is first screened for any chronic infectious illnesses. Incredibly important considering the recipient wants to clean up their gut and not add to their problems. It’s also essential that the donor hasn’t had any antibiotics for at least a month.
A laxative the night before ensures a bowel movement the next morning to deliver the goods. The poo is then mixed with a saline solution provided and it’s important to really get in there and give it a good whirl so the consistency is smooth and uniform. Then it is put through a disposable coffee filter to extract the brown liquid goodness containing the sacred, healthy bacteria.
Right before the procedure, the patient is given Imodium which allows you to hold in your stool for as long as possible so the foreign poo has time to really do it’s magic. The patient is heavily sedated so that they can sleep after the procedure and then the stool is injected.
If you wanna skip the whole hospital ordeal and prefer a backyard job, then there are DIY fecal transplant guides online, I shit you not. http://thepowerofpoop.com/epatients/fecal-transplant-instructions/
Roughly two weeks following the procedure, patients usually notice a difference.
So what illnesses does this curious procedure treat?
Clostridium difficile So far is the only scientifically proven illness that is treated by fecal transplant with a success rate of 90%
It might not always be the quick fix you are looking for especially if you have other factors that you haven’t addressed like stress, eating junk food or a hedonistic lifestyle with little sleep and lots of parties. So what do Doctors feel about this controversial procedure? Well some are converts, and some really don’t get it, but most are in the dark and waiting for more research.
Fecal transplant was first documented in 4th century China, known as “yellow soup”. It was made of fecal matter and water, which was drunk by the patient. Tasty.
It is customary in some parts of the world for a newborn to receive a tiny amount of the mother’s stool by mouth. This kickstarts the baby’s immune system.
Weight loss. Chocolate milkshake? If you’re looking to gain or lose weight, this may be an option to consider in the future. Thin mice in the lab gained weight after receiving a so-called “fecal milkshake” from obese humans.
Fecal transplantation has been performed in animals for more than 100 years. The application is referred to as transfaunation.
Gross? Pretty much. Effective? Kinda. Innovative? Shit yeah!