Well, nothing Nature gives us is by accident, and the appendix is no exception.
Here’s why you should have an appreciation for this mysterious, misunderstood part of you.
Your worm-like appendix
Your appendix is a little worm-like organ that's about 3 to 4 inches long and about a quarter inch wide.
It's attached to the section of the colon where your small intestine empties into it (known as the cecum).
This is also a place where lots of lymphatic tissue is located. And considering what your appendix does for you, this location is no accident.
Here's what I mean--these are its four important jobs:
1- The early years
The first job of your appendix starts when you’re in the womb!
Hormones produced by your appendix beginning at about the 11th week of pregnancy help regulate your body’s metabolism in the womb.
Plus during your first two decades of life, your appendix helps encourage B-lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) to mature, which supports strong immune system functioning.
2- Swish, swish
The "intersection" where your small intestine empties into the colon can get rather messy.
This is especially true if your digestion is poor. Poor digestion creates wastes that are sticky and contain food molecules that are too large to be used for nourishment, and are likely loaded with harmful bacteria.
When your appendix senses this, it generates a powerful secretion to help neutralize and remove any residue from the colon wall that may become impacted.
3- A natural reservoir
Your appendix functions as a natural reservoir for friendly intestinal microbes, which help keep harmful bacteria and yeasts in check and support your immune system functioning.
4- I remember you!
Fragments of your bowel movements pass in and out of your appendix as they make their way down into the colon.
When this is happening, (harmless) bacteria in your stool communicate with the lining of your appendix. Signals are then sent to the nearby lymphatic tissue, which creates a "memory bank" of information for your immune system.
Then when that species of bacteria passes through again in the future, your immune system will more likely remember it as harmless, instead of mistakenly seeing it as an "invader" and launching an attack (such as those seen with food sensitivities).
When the worm blows up like a balloon
Your worm-like appendix sits quietly doing its job and you're probably not even aware of it.
That is, unless you get appendicitis.
Then your appendix swells and fills with dead white blood cells (pus), and the infection can spread to the rest of your body at the speed of light.
That's why it's such a medical emergency and requires either antibiotics or an appendectomy.
Never fear--during this process you are VERY well aware that something is wrong because you're probably experiencing:
- Extreme pain and tenderness in the right abdominal area
- Nausea and vomiting
- Bloating and swelling
Wherefore art thou, appendicitis?
There are several causes for appendicitis, including parasite infection (especially pinworms) and swollen lymph nodes due to viral or bacterial infection.
But the most common causes are:
1- Dry stool getting lodged in the appendix
2- Harmful intestinal bacteria that trigger an infection
And those are frequently the result of diet and poor digestion!
This is also why appendicitis often strikes teens--their diets are heavy on fast food, soda, refined carbs and sweets which wreak havoc with their digestion and feed harmful bacteria in the gut.
Keep your entire system in tip-top shape
In order to help keep appendicitis out of your future, as well as enhance the health of your GI tract overall, here are two ways you can help:
Eat REAL foods and promote sound digestion
Concentrate on real foods (meats, poultry, fish, fruits, vegetables, eggs, butter and olive oil)—these are the foods that nourish you and support optimal health. Processed foods, refined carbs and soda should be avoided completely or kept to a bare minimum.
And to promote better digestion, it makes a difference what foods you pair together. The Great Taste No Pain health system will show you what combinations are easier on your GI tract, as well as give you a collection of delicious recipes featuring healthy real foods that even a fussy, fast food-loving teenager will enjoy.
Support a healthy flora balance
The friendly bacteria in your intestines help break down starches and fibers and keep your digestion running smoothly.
Plus they keep dangerous microbes in check, thereby lessening the chances of an infection festering.
But the key is having a strong of enough population of helpful bacteria…and that’s where probiotics like Super Shield multi-strain probiotic formula can be a godsend.
Super Shield contains 13 well-studied strains of potent beneficial bacteria that work to repopulate your supply of helpful microbes so they can stay strong and effective and help keep YOU healthy!
Congratulations! You now know more than 99.9 percent of the population about your appendix and how to keep it and ALL your organs healthy!