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HerbSprout Microbiome Blog -


Herbsprout is a webblog and podcast dedicated to sharing the health benefits of herbs, food, innovations related to our gut microbiome. Herbsprout seeks to bridge the vast chasm dividing the mainstream medical community, alternative medicine, and Asian medicine, especially of China (TCM), India (Ayurveda), and Japan (eJim & Kampo).

animal products, processed foods, alcohol and sugar may lead to inflammation

Another study points to the connections between our gut health and what we eat.

An April 15 2021 Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News reported that high dietary intake of animal products, processed foods, alcohol and sugar could lead to inflammation in our gut, according to a study by the University of Groningen and University Medical Centre Groningen. This diet showed to support the abundance of inflammatory Firmicutes and Ruminococcus sp in our gut.

A diet rich in plant-based foods was found to promote the opposite affect. For example, nuts, oily fish, fruit, vegetables was linked to a higher abundance of healthy bacteria such as Faecalibacterium sp.

University of Groningen's Laura A. Bolte, PhD, and colleagues, studied 1425 individuals many of whom suffered from some type of gut related disease and compared their diets to a control group of 871 gut healthy individuals.

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The "rotten egg smell" can be good. . . or bad for you

The "rotten egg smell" can be...
The SciTech Daily reported on April 12 2021 new metabolic capabilities of gut bacteria, according to a study by University of Vienna and Professor David Schleheck from the University of Konstanz. For the first time, the researchers found that our gut microbes digest plant-based, sulfur-containing sugar sulfoquinovose, which exist in many green vegetables such as spinach and algae. They found that low concentrations of hydrogen sulfide in the gut can have anti-inflammatory effects, while excessive amounts may be connected to diseases such as cancer.

An earlier study by microbiologist David Schleheck at the University of Konstanz discovered that other microorganisms can use the sulfosugar as a nutrient. Now, they have confirmed that the gut microbiome in humans contribute to how nutrition affects our health.

The new study found that "sulfoquinovose stimulates the growth of very specific key organisms in the gut microbiome,” says David Schleheck quoted in SciTech Daily, including Eubacterium rectale which is associated with healthy people. On the other hand, high concentrations were associated with chronic inflammatory diseases.

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Environment such as diet plays key role in one's microbiome

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Quoted in the Harvard Gazette March 23 2021, “Evidence in humans and many animals to this point suggests that, surprisingly, genetics plays a small role compared to environmental influences,” according to Rachel Carmody, an assistant professor in the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology and principal investigator of the department’s Nutritional and Microbial Ecology Lab.

Her team studied a number of different animals that were domesticated and given "foods originally cultivated for human use, in processed forms that are relatively easily digestible," Carmody is quoted as saying in the Harvard Gazette article. The result is they found that the microbiomes of these different species, from dogs to pigs to rabbits, became commonly similar. Carmody’s lab previously studied how the gut biome squad of both mice and humans changed, and changed quickly, simply through diet changes. The end result suggests that genetics plays a limited role in gut microbiome make up.

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Your ability to resist pathogens largely depends on your gut microbiome

Recent studies have shown that gut microbiota can build resistance to gut colonization by disease-causing microorganisms (pathogens). Conversely, prolonged and/or high levels of antibiotic use in people promotes expansion of Clostridium difficile, a bacterium that causes severe diarrhoea and inflammation of the colon.

Scientists again have found that when one becomes infected with a pathogen changes occur in the microbial community that enhances one's ability to combat the harmful bacteria. The strength of one's resistance varies from person to person, according to Apollo Stacey of the National Institute of Health laboratory of Host Immunity.

It has been known that antibiotic use in people promotes expansion of Clostridium difficile, a bacterium that causes severe diarrhoea and inflammation of the colon, leading to a high risk of disease and death. Likewise, Salmonella enterica and C. rodentium respond to microbiota in the gut to strength or weaken their virulence. Stacey's team found that a naturally produced chemical in the body called taurine nourishes and trains the microbiota to promote its resistance to subsequent infection.

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