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There is a zoo in my poo !

Did you know?

An abnormal microbiota is associated with the following conditions

• Diabetes

• Metabolic syndrome and obesity

• Allergies

• Inflammatory bowel disease

• Irritable bowel syndrome

• Auto-immune diseases

• Colon cancer

• Depression and anxiety

Although it is not clear if abnormal microbiota causes or is a consequence of these conditions. An active area of research asks if microbiota can be improved leading to improved health.

There are trillions of microorganisms living in your intestines, and there is a growing body of evidence that these little guys can have a huge impact on your mental health, metabolism, digestion and immune system.

Your gut microbiota is largely determined by your diet. Eating a diet of fibre rich fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds encourages the microbes good at digesting these foods to grow.

Conversely, a diet high in animal protein and saturated fat encourages the growth of bacteria that are not so good for us.

The good news is you can change your gut biome in a relatively short period of time. A study by the American Gut Project comparing diets found a significant change in faecal microbial diversity can occur in just 3-6 days.

So how can you influence your gut health? One of the key strategies recommended by many dietitians is to incorporate 30 different plant foods in to your diet every week. This includes vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. Herbs and spices count too, but unless you are going to chow into a bunch of parsley it is recommended that you count a serve from this group as a quarter.

Thirty different plant foods sounds confronting, but try writing down what you already have in a week and you might be surprised. Plant bingo anybody?

The above “Did you know” information was taken from A resource prepared by the International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics..(the creator and/or owner of the copyright of the materials).

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