Did you know that your body is full of trillions of bacteria, viruses and fungi? Yes, really!
While some bacteria are associated with disease, others are actually extremely important for your immune system, heart, weight and many other aspects of health. These good bacteria are collectively known as the microbiome.
Interestingly, the food you eat affects the diversity of your gut bacteria.
The gut microbiome affects the body from birth and throughout life by controlling the digestion of food, immune system, central nervous system and other bodily processes.
As your microbiome grows, it affects your body in a number of ways, including:
Digesting breast milk:
Some of the bacteria that first begin to grow inside babies' intestines are called Bifidobacteria. They digest the healthy sugars in breast milk that are important for growth
Digesting fibre: Certain bacteria digest fibre, producing short-chain fatty acids, which are important for gut health. Fibre may help prevent weight gain, diabetes, heart disease and the risk of cancer.
Helping control your immune system:
The gut microbiome also controls how your immune system works. By communicating with immune cells, the gut microbiome can control how your body responds to infection.
Helping control brain health:
New research suggests that the gut microbiome may also affect the central nervous system, which controls brain function.
This week I'll be showing you more about gut health and how improving your gut health may help alleviate symptoms, either acute or chronic, that affect your everyday quality of life such as:
- Abdominal (stomach) pain
- Change in appetite
- Blood or mucus in feaces
- Weight loss