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Honor Thy Symbionts

To paraphrase famed biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky, "nothing in nutrition and health makes sense except in the light of the gut microbiome." In Honor Thy Symbionts, the lens of our evolutionary past is focused on modern issues of obesity, GMO foods, diabetes, the rise in C-section births, ecology of our gut microbes, our African microbial origins, government dietary recommendations, probiotics vs. prebiotics, food poisoning, and more. This collection of 21 short essays is not organized as a single book - with a beginning and obvious end. But a collection of musings ranging from 600 to 2,000 words in length. Though a wide range of topics is covered, a microbial thread connects all of the essays. This decidedly Darwinian (evolutionary) perspective is a nod to the reality that ninety-percent of the cells in the human body are not even human, but microbial. This makes humans super organisms - however, more microbe than mammal. This biological truth is reframing the scientific and philosophical conversation around Who are we? The ultimate questions of health and disease in our modern world will hinge on the speed at which we discover and accept that we have always lived in a microbial world and much that ails us is in fact discordance with the once symbiotic relationship we coevolved with these tiniest forms of life.
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About the Author

JEFF LEACH is the Founder of the Human Food Project. His opinions on health and nutrition have appeared as Op-ed articles in the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Sydney Morning Herald and his peer-reviewed research has been published in the British Journal of Nutrition, European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, BioScience and Microflora, Journal of Archaeological Science, Public Health Nutrition and many others. He lives in New Orleans - but hopes to spend more time in Africa.

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