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Microbiome and gut health

Microbiome and your gut health

I like to think of the gut microbiome as a newly discovered organ. And it plays a huge role in your overall health, affecting everything from your immune health to your heart health.

It's only recently that though extensive research that scientists have discovered the important that your microbiome plays in your overall health.

In this blog I aim to answer some basic but key questions for you.

How do all those gut bacteria end up in your gut?

Many gut bacteria colonize your gut at birth. As you grow, what you eat largely shapes your gut microbiome composition.

But there are plenty of other factors that contribute to it.

Your gut microbiome is also influenced by things like:

✅ Where you live

✅ Who you interact with

✅ Any medication you take

✅ If you have a pet

✅ Exercise and stress levels

Humans share 99% of the same DNA, but it turns out that our gut microbiomes are very different.

Through research, it's been discovered that even identical twins only share around 34% of the same gut bacteria.

Unrelated people share only around 30%.

And When scientists looked even closer at the different genetic variants of each type of bacteria, it turns out that your gut microbiome is virtually unique.

Scientists now know how critical your microbiome is to your overall health.

But what your gut bacteria and what it wants to eat? 

Of course each person is entirely different as I've mentioned but it's clear thag there are a few common foods and food types.  We now know that the food you eat has a large impact on your gut bacteria.

For example, eating a wide variety of minimally processed, high-fiber plant foods can help you build a more diverse and healthier gut.

Why do you need to think about what you eat?

Each bacterium in your gut is a little factory worker that turns certain foods into a wide range of complex chemicals.

These then pass through your gut wall into your bloodstream and throughout your body.

So... What does a “healthy” gut microbiome look like?

Scientists have always known that a diverse microbiome is generally healthier, as it tends to be more resilient and more capable.

Your gut bacteria have specialized roles to play in your body. For example:

✅ Extracting extra nutrients from your food

✅ Producing certain vitamins

✅ Regulating immune function

✅ Influencing metabolic responses to food

✅ Regulating appetite

That's why the greater the diversity in your gut, the larger the variety and breadth of skills your team of gut bacteria likely has.

Through research, published in the leading journal Nature Medicine, it has been discovered that there are new found connections between the gut microbiome, diet, and metabolism.

These include new links with 30 specific "good" and "bad" bacteria that are linked with better or worse blood fat and blood sugar responses and overall health.

Unlike your genes, your microbiome can change.

Recently cientists have also discovered positive and negative links between certain foods and these bacteria. Postive links are fermented foods of all types, whole foods and plant foods, negative types are ultra processed foods, alcohol and fast foods of all types.

If you want to be all round much more healthy pay attention to feeding your microbiome.. Speak to Helen Kimber to know more.

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