Microbiome Diversity Is Probably Not Achievable By Swallowing A Whole Range Of Supplements
While taking a probiotic may be like planting a seed, taking a prebiotic is like nurturing it by giving it the nourishment it needs. But again, this approach comes up against the same limitations as taking a probiotic alone.
Verdict: “Prebiotics do not increase the diversity of the microbiome,” says Whelan. “They will increase specific bacteria, but they won’t increase the number of different types of bacteria.”
Mixing it up
So microbiome diversity is probably not achievable by swallowing a whole range of supplements. But there are ways to improve diversity by focusing on the foods you eat.
“Have a look at the people around you,” says Whelan. “You’ll find some people will have the same lunch every day. And in the evening, three or four different main dishes, and they will eat that for a whole year bar going out occasionally.”
Even if your habitual diet is balanced, with plenty of fruit, vegetables, whole grains and so on, having a predictable routine is not likely to do much good for a diverse microbiome.
Eating the same few meals all the time may not be the best for beneficial gut microbes – scientists say variety is key
“Dietary diversity is about challenging the concept of constantly eating the same thing,” says Whelan. “For example, if you have fish regularly, make sure it isn’t always salmon. Make sure you have wholegrains regularly, but not just wholegrain bread.”
Whelan agrees that some people may be taking fermentation too far.
The Future Of Medicine With Microbiome Research
Microbiome research is crucial to help advance medicine in its future. Understanding the gut can help prevent and treat diseases by targeting the microbiome, not the patient themselves. These treatments are referred to as microbiome therapeutics which is part of drug development called pharmacomicrobiomics that works with microbiome-based diagnostics . With microbiome research, well be able to monitor health changes or abnormalities more efficiently to treat diseases before they become too serious.
There will surely be better advancements in microbiome research in the future. As microbiome sequencing becomes cheaper and more accessible, well be able to explore microbial communities from around the world by sending away samples for testing. We can also expect new microbiome therapeutics that will treat diseases of all kinds including cancer, metabolic disorders, autoimmune conditions, inflammatory bowel disease , infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS, or Ebola virus disease , and even mental health issues such as depression.
Ways To Strengthen Your Microbiome
The microbiome consists of TRILLIONS of living microbes inside your gut. These little;mood;elevators;work around the clock producing happy-chemicals such as serotonin and dopamine. Making sure that you have a diverse and thriving microbiome can help not only with your mental health, but can prevent things like the urge to over-eat, and can help regulate your digestive system.
Below, we have compiled a list of ways you can ensure that you have a happy and healthy microbiome!
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Feed Your Good Bacteria Prebiotics
Probiotics need to eat. You need PREbiotics to feed your good gut bacteria. You can get prebiotics from vegetables rich in soluble dietary fiber , chocolate and prebiotic supplements like Bulletproof InnerFuel Prebiotic. Also, experiment with foods high in resistant starch, like plantain and green banana flour, raw potato starch and cooked and cooled white rice.
Alcohol And Gut Health
Getting merry too often can have implications for your intestinal health, not just your head and your wallet.
Simply put, reducing your alcohol consumption is generally just good for your health, but the odd glass of red wine isnt so bad. It contains polyphenols, antioxidants that help protect you from inflammation and disease, and increase the abundance of beneficial bacteria. If you get red and blotchy when you drink, you might have alcohol intolerance.
TIP Find out if you’re predisposed to alcohol intolerance, gluten intolerance and lactose intolerance with the Atlas DNA Test.
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How Your Skin Microbiome Can Help Acne
Although acne is an extremely common skin problem, the exact cause behind acne is still unknown. However, new research indicates that host immunity in the skin microbiome plays an important role in its development. Moreover, studies show that probiotics can be used as targeted antimicrobial therapy for acne.;
Since acne is an inflammatory condition of the skin, causing breakouts and pimples, there are multiple contributing factors that can potentially trigger it.;
These include things like:;
- Environmental conditions
- Skin products
However, the development of acne really boils down to one thinghow strong your skin is. Weak skin is dehydrated, under-nourished, and vulnerable to attacks by external factors. Meanwhile, strong skin comes with a strong barrier that provides protection against external aggressors. Thats where your skin microbiome comes into play.
Unfortunately, using skincare products that kill all of the skin bacterium both good and badlike benzoyl peroxidecan strip your skin of its first line of defense. When the human skin microbiome is compromised, its open to attacks and triggers of all kinds on all fronts. Not to mention, skincare products that dry out your skin and strip it of your skins natural oils can also affect the natural skin microbiome and lead to an even worse skin condition.;
Supporting Your Immunity Through Your Gut Microbiome
With social distancing and self-isolation now commonplace all over the world, you may be wondering how you can help support and boost your natural immunity. The latest science illustrates that our innate immunity relies on a healthy gut microbiome.So, how do you support your gut microbiome to help strengthen your immunity? We asked our scientists, researchers, and physicians at Viome Life Sciences to share the research papers and articles which they have been following on ways to boost immunity and the gut-immune system connection, with links throughout this blog to help you learn more.
Even with a capable immune response, its essential to also avoid infection wherever possible. Dr. Leo Galland, MD, a board-certified internist and recognized as a world leader in integrative and functional medicine published his Anti-Viral Hygiene procedure on his website. This procedure covers proper hand washing, cleaning of surfaces, and what to do if you become infected to protect yourself and others around you. This ties to and builds on CDC advice with which we are all becoming very familiar.
The key role your microbiome plays in immunity
Fighting off viruses
Surprisingly, our gut microbes might even affect viruses that impact us
A healthy microbiome = healthy immune response
Gut barrier health and leaky gut
Its all about balance
Foods to avoid
Boosting immunity through nutrition
BUTwhat are the best foods for me right now?
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What Is Gut Health
Your gut informally refers to your gastrointestinal tract and the trillions of bacteria living within it.;;
When your gut is in good health, the bacteria that live there are in harmony with each other as well as with your internal environment. This symbiosis allows you to experience benefits such as easier and regular bowel movements, a well-functioning immune system, and regulated mood and appetite, just to name a few.;;
When your gut is dysfunctional, that means the symphony the bacteria are playing is out of tune, whether theres an imbalance of beneficial bacteria or youre not feeding your gut with the foods it needs to thrive. From this dysfunction, you may experience bloating, food sensitivities, intolerances or allergies, recurring yeast infections, or irritable bowels.;
But the role these bacteria play and their impact go well beyond your GI tract. These bacteria are absolutely vital to human life and collectively, they make up the microbiome.
Stock Up On Dietary Sources Of Prebiotics
Prebiotics are food for your microbiome! Its important to feed these little guys to give them the energy they need to complete their very important task of managing your enteric nervous system. Here is a list of dietary prebiotics that should be staples in your home kitchen:
- Whole Grains
- Green Tea Extracts
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Protects You Against Environmental Aggressors
Similarly, the skin microbiome also protects your skin from environmental factors. These aggressors include UV rays and sun exposure, free radical and oxidative damage, as well as allergens, pollution, etc. The skin microbiome also aids in wound healing, which is beneficial if you have frequent acne flare ups.;
In Short Heres How To Have A Healthy Gut
Never to underestimate the importance of gut health when it comes to your body and wellbeing. Its home to trillions of bacteria, not to mention actual human cells, that work hard to keep you fit and well. Your lifestyle can have a serious impact on this balance.
Making simple positive changes like more fiber in your diet, more exercise, and less unnecessary medication is how to get a healthy gut and wholesome gut microbiome. Just remember, you really do have the power to change, one step at a time.
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Why Potency Matters When Choosing A Probiotic Supplement
Reading a probiotic label can be confusing, so knowing what to look for can help you choose the right supplement and reap the most benefit.The potency of a probiotic is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing one and is;measured in colony-forming units . This indicates the number of live, usable cells. Many supplements provide around 10 to 20 billion CFUs per serving, but some contain much more.Because probiotics are live organisms, manufacturers need to take special care to make sure they survive and can do their job when ingested. Higher potency probiotics provide a larger quantity of bacteria, which gives more a chance of surviving the journey through the gut and providing your body with benefits.In addition to a high CFU count, refrigeration is another factor that can improve a probiotics potency by helping keep some types of bacteria alive. This is why high potency probiotic supplements that require refrigeration may be the best ones to choose.
How To Improve Your Gut Health
The good news is that there are simple steps you can take to support your gut health. Here are some of the strategies doctors recommend.
Eat a wide range of healthy foods
A diet made up of several different food types can lead to a more diverse microbiome that is made up of more species, according to a review published in the journal Molecular Metabolism. This, Dr. Lee explains, strengthens our microbiome and enhances its resiliency.
The best foods for gut health are fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains, especially those highest in fiber, which helps your digestive tract work properly. Women should aim for 25 grams of fiber per day and men should aim for 38 grams per day, per the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
And cut back on unhealthy foods. The more grease, fat, and salt you eat, the worse your gut health will be, says Scott David Lippe, M.D., chief of gastroenterology at Bergen Regional Medical Center in Paramus, NJ, and assistant clinical professor of medicine at Rutgers Medical School. This is something to keep in mind especially when youre out to dinner, as restaurants tend to load up on salt, grease, and fat because they taste good.
Try cutting out dairy
Consider a probiotic
Incorporate more prebiotics into your diet
Monitor your vitamin D levels
Manage your stress level
Get enough quality sleep each night
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Dietary Program To Optimise Gut Bacteria
The Gut Makeover , is a dietary program that was designed to improve the health and diversity of the microbiome, leading to weight loss and subsidiary health benefits . The groups were a convenience sample of people seeking the services of a nutritional therapist. The majority of participants primary goal was therefore weight-loss, with several additionally aiming to improve digestive symptoms , plus energy, and pain issues. None of the participants took part in the nutritional therapy with the explicit aim of improving emotional or cognitive well-being.
Participants either attended an in-person or online workshop at the start of the program, where they were briefed by a nutritional therapist, trained in the procedure, on the dietary protocol for the four-weeks. They were also given handouts detailing the plan. Further in-person or online conference call group briefings with the nutritional therapist were conducted at the half-way point of the diet and at the end . A private Facebook group was also offered to both groups during the program where they could share experiences and ask the nutritional therapist questions.
The Gut Makeover protocol was developed based on research into the microbiome and gut permeability. Details of the protocol are described fully in the published guidelines and summarised below.
Throughout the four weeks, participants
In the second half of the plan participants also
Excluded from the diet throughout the four weeks
Tips To Boost Your Gut Microbiome
Your gut microbiome is a vast community of trillions of bacteria and fungi that inhabit every nook and cranny of your gastrointestinal tract, and have a major influence on your metabolism, body weight, propensity to illness, immune system, appetite and mood. These microbes mostly live in your lower intestine and outnumber all the other cells in your body put together.
Conceptually, we should view these microbes as a newly discovered organ, weighing slightly more than our brains and nearly as vital. There are some organs we can live without, including our spleen, gall bladder, tonsils and appendix, but we wouldnt survive long without our gut microbes. Intriguingly, no two microbiomes are the same we are all unique. And more than ever, were finding out just how important these microbes are.
Read more about the microbiome:
According to research, the richer and more diverse the community of gut microbes are, the lower your risk of disease and allergies. This has been shown in animal tests and also in human studies comparing the microbes of people with and without particular diseases. Examples from recent work at Kings College London include studies of diabetes, obesity, allergy and inflammatory diseases like colitis and arthritis.
Meanwhile, there is mounting evidence that babies born via caesarean section miss out on some of the microbes they would obtain through a vaginal birth, which may make them more vulnerable to allergies and asthma.
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So Where Do Probiotics Come In
Glad you asked! Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide a health benefit to the host when consumed in adequate amounts.;;
Two important things to keep in mind here: 1) In order to be a true probiotic, the cultures found within the product must be live, which means they need to survive manufacturing, shipment, and finally, make it into your GI tract. And 2) Health benefit is going to vary from person to person, which makes sense, as no ones gut microbiome will be the same as another, and the effects of a probiotic are going to differ from person to person.;;
Probiotics work not by completely changing the makeup of your existing gut microbiome, but rather, interacting and conspiring with the bacteria in the microbiome to deliver their intended benefits.
Gut Health Equals Great Health
When you hear the term gut health, you might think of your digestion, probiotic supplements, or even the foods that are touted as good for your gut, from kimchi to kombucha. But what does it mean to have a healthy gut, and why does it matter? Were here, with the help of Seed Health*, to break it all down for you.
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Changing Your Microbiome For Health
Thinking of your gut bacteria as its own ecosystem may seem odd. But Eckroth notes that the number of microorganism cells in the body outnumber human cells by about 10:1, so maybe taking care of your gut isnt such a bad idea after all.
There are hundreds of different types of bacteria that live in the gut, but an article published in the journal Genome Medicine reported that the specific combination of bacteria isnt as important as having a wide variety that is able to carry out its duties and be resilient to change. Over time, different bacteria are introduced to the body depending on early life exposure, where you live, your genetics and what you eat. So making gut-friendly food choices is one important area that you can control, and can determine how healthy the bacteria are that make up your microbiome.
When you give your gut the right foods, it feeds the friendly bacteria and helps them grow to out compete the bad bacteria, said Eckroth. Our bodies need to have a thriving diverse microbiome.
According to Eckroth, highly processed foods and sugars can damage the friendly bacteria in the gut. But transitioning to whole foods with plenty of fiber will feed the good bacteria and help them thrive.
Why Is The Skin Microbiome Important
You;may already know that the skin is the largest organ of the human body, so its well-being is;pretty important when it comes to health and disease. The skin microbiome plays an important role in the human immune system and many immune functions.
Just like the microorganisms in our gut, skin microorganisms have essential roles in the protection against invading pathogens, the education of our immune system and the breakdown of natural products, according to;Nature Reviews Microbiology. The skin is colonized by beneficial microorganisms and serves as a physical barrier to prevent the invasion of pathogens.
This means that the skin microbiome has a variety of functions when it comes to keeping our body healthy. The skin microbiome doesnt just;defend against invading bacterial pathogens, but also can help fight off infections, ease inflammation and;protect us from outside harm.
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