Battling Pathogens and Building Immunity Begins In Your Gut

Robynne Chutkan, M.D.

For viruses, transmission is a matter of life or death, and that means they have to pay attention to what they’re doing to you, the host.


In this Episode of The Human Upgrade™...

… Robynne Chutkan, M.D., joins the show to talk about a topic that’s foundational to biohacking—resilience. More specifically, resilience that starts in the gut. You’ll learn:

  • how your microbiome continually evolves and why that matters to the state of your gut and body functions.
  • how to strengthen the antiviral defenses located in your gut.
  • why your body’s own ability “to resist, heal, and recover from viruses is vastly superior” to pharmaceuticals.
  • what to do before taking antibiotics to protect your gut, as well as what you can do to rehab your microbiome after antibiotic use.

“Being on the winning team when battling viruses isn’t because of good luck, or coincidence, or variations in viral virulence,” Dr. Chutkan explains in her newest book, “The Anti-Viral Gut: Tackling Pathogens from the Inside Out.” “It’s due to differences in us, the hosts, and our defenses, and those differences are what determine your outcome. Put another way: it’s less about the potency of the pathogen and more about the health of the host.”

Dr. Chutkan is a Yale- and Columbia-educated integrative gastroenterologist who’s been advancing knowledge and education about gut health for decades. Nearly 20 years ago she founded the Digestive Center for Wellness to help people get to the root issue of their digestive issues and improve their gut health. She incorporates microbial optimization, nutritional therapy, mind-body techniques, and lifestyle changes while following the latest scientific research.

To combat pathogens and build resilience, pay attention to your gut microbiome and work to improve the health, diversity and richness of it, she advises.

“Exposure to viruses is somewhat inevitable, but infection and illness is not.”

Robynne Chutkan, M.D.

More about Dr. Robynne Chutkan: She earned her bachelor’s degree from Yale University and her medical degree from Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons. She also completed her internship and residency and served as chief resident at Columbia. She then completed her fellowship in gastroenterology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. She’s been on the faculty at Georgetown University Hospital since 1997. She’s authored dozens of academic journal articles and book chapters and lectures frequently on the microbiome and gut health internationally. She’s been the featured medical expert on numerous media outlets and publications and hosted her own PBS Special: “Gutbliss”.  She previously served as on-air talent and a medical consultant for Discovery Health Channel.

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