Lately the news is reporting an influx of information on the health of our gut and how the body is affected by the trillions of tiny organisms which reside there, called our “microflora.”
This is an amazing time because everyone I know from nutritionists, medical doctors to veterinarians is talking about the microorganisms residing in our intestines. People are starting to realize that our gut health is the most essential component to disease prevention and longevity.
With all the studies being done on this topic there is now a lot of research to choose from. Recently I came across an article that succinctly captures the importance of the new information we have about the human microbiome.
Megan Meyer, PhD.’s article:
3 Truths and a Lie About the Microbiome
In this article by Megan Meyer, PhD., she points out that if you can educate yourself on the basic science of how to create and nourish healthy gut bacteria, you can incorporate good gut health strategies into your daily routine. Meyer addresses the foods that play a role in adding bacteria, such as yogurt, kimchi, miso and kefir as well as the difficulty in determining if you are getting enough of these foods to be effective.
If you have compromised gut health consider taking a supplement of probiotics to build up your microflora.
Meyer also discusses the use of prebiotics. The prebiotics in our foods are specific types of fiber that aid in feeding our microbiome in the gut.
“It is difficult to parse out a specific dose of fiber or prebiotics, in certain foods.” One way to ensure our diet contains enough fiber is by taking a prebiotic fiber supplement. The Institute of Medicine recommends that women consume 25 grams of fiber and men consume 38 grams.
Meyer considers the effects of low calorie sweetners on our microbiome as well. She points out that we do not have sufficient evidence to draw the conclusion that they disrupt the balance of our microflora. We will need to wait and see about that as we are making new discoveries on this hot topic daily.