If you have read #series1, you’ll know the goal is to create a large diversity within your gut microbiome. Below I’ve listed what you should avoid and increase to help you get on the correct path of creating gut microbiome diversity. Factors that decrease gut microbiome are factors that are ‘feeding’ bad gut microbiome that will eliminate the good gut microbiome. Whereas when you are consuming factors that increase your gut microbiome diversity you are feeding the good gut microbiome that will assist in eliminating the bad gut microbiome. Remember increasing your gut microbiome diversity will assist in preventing diseases. So when you are eating and taking supplements/medications think, am I improving my gut microbiome, AKA my health, or am i decreasing it?
Factors decreasing gut microbiome diversity
Medications: Antibiotics, metformin, The Oral contraceptive pill, Protein pump inhibitors
Excess sugar intake Artificial sweeteners Stress due to the increase in cortisol levels
High fat (trans and saturated) diet
High protein diet (increases insulin-like growth factor which changes composition of gut microbiome).
Diet high in animal protein Typical western diet
Gluten free diet
Factors increasing gut microbiome diversity
Increased fibre intake from foods such as oats, fruits and vegetables
Resistance starch foods such as grains, seeds and legumes Probiotic enhanced foods, such as fermented foods: sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, miso, kefir, yoghurt. Prebiotic rich foods: apples, garlic, onion, leeks, bananas, asparagus.
Polyphenols which are found in tea, berries and vegetables.
Diet high in plant protein: beans, tempeh, grains. Mediterranean diet (low red meat, high fibre, antioxidants and unsaturated fats).
Please note that if your gut microbiome has a low diversity (known as gut dysbiosis) further assistance will be required by a naturopath to alter the ratio with specific dietary and nutritional manipulation of specific microbiome strains. Also keep in mind if you have a condition that may be caused by decreased gut microbiome diversity a naturopath can specifically assist in improving your gut microbiome diversity in order to treat your condition. For example a factor that increases gut microbiome diversity; fibre and prebiotics have specifically been found to increase SCFA production which reduces type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. I hope you learnt something out of this post! Stay healthy and happy, Balancedbeings x x
References Please note I have left them in link form so you can easily click and access the studies I used for this post.