Thursday, June 18, 2015

How Fast Can Your Diet Alter Your Gut Biome?

Every time you have a meal, you are eating for more than pleasure or weight.  You are affecting the hundred trillion bacteria that line your large intestine, and this live-in colony of microbes is known as your gut biome. This colony has hundreds of individual species and is a digestion powerhouse, breaking food down into useful and nutritious components for us and for the microbes. It is a recent scientific advancement that new genomic techniques have allowed a detailed study of our gut biome. Further, it seems to differ among people, and an individual's gut biome can offer insight into various health conditions they may have.  For example, a person's gut biome can explain certain metabolic disorders.

Of course, everyone wants a healthy gut biome (even if they don't know what that means), because that means they are digesting their food well, have improved immunity and are less prone to gaining weight because they have a better metabolism.  It seems that the more diversified and varied the gut biome is, the healthier a person is.  It also seems that a diet made of processed refined foods makes gut biome less diverse because it tends to be made up of wheat, corn, soy and meat (in addition to the unhealthy additives of preservatives and chemicals).  This is the typical fast food diet of meat sandwiches and pasta with meat for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The good news is that a recent study found that when the rural African diet of varied vegetables, whole grains and beans was eaten for two weeks by people who normally consumed a typical fast food diet, the gut biome was positively changed.  More gut diversity was found and reduced markers for disease and inflammation.  This was also conversely true for the people who regularly consumed the healthy rural diet and consumed the fast food diet for two weeks.  Their gut biome changed for the worse.

Making a change can be difficult but knowing the adaptability and the sensitivity of the gut biome to our dietary changes in just two short weeks can make us all winners.

Stay healthy & well,

No comments:

Post a Comment