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“WHERE THINGS SO SMALL CAN HAVE A MASSIVE IMPACT ON YOUR HEALTH.”
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).

Evidence of lactate producing gut bacteria as a key memory-boosting molecule

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Calcium lactate crystals on the... Calcium lactate crystals on the surface of cheese. Source: dreamtime.com
An April 29 2020 article published by the Department of Energy Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and it's counterpart at Berkeley Lab found new evidence of tangible links between the gut and the brain. The team found that lactate, a molecule produced by all species of one gut microbe, as a key memory-boosting molecular messenger.

Said Janice Jansson, a microbial ecologist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, “our study shows that the microbiome might partner with genetics to affect memory.” Researchers discovered that the Lactobacillus and L. reuteri strains were linked to improved memory, as well as two additional strains of Lactobacilli. The team fed lactate (produced by Lactobacillus) to mice that had poor memory and noticed that their memory improved. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a molecular messenger linked to memory formation in their brains. This is another step foreward and a factor in the gut-brain axis, though not yet complete, admits Jansson.

https://www.pnnl.gov/news-media/scientists-explore-links-between-genetics-gut-microbiome-and-memory

https://newscenter.lbl.gov/2020/04/29/genetics-microbiome-memory/
#ai #bacteria #cardiovasculardisease #datascience #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #obesity

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94% accurate detection of liver disease by gut bacteria

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94% accurate detection of liver ...
Liver disease can be a mild and non- serious excess fat build up in one's liver. But it can also lead to scarring, fibrosis, cirrhosis, and cancer. The current methods for using monitoring our liver can be expensive and invasive MRIs and biopsies.

The New Atlas July 01 2020 reported that the Salk Institute and the University of California San Diego discovered that our gut bacteria can accurately detect liver disease by 90%. Examining the stool samples of 163 healthy and sick patients, these researchers discovered a signature based with 94% accuracy on the presence of 19 bacterial species that was indicative of liver disease, specifically non-fatty liver disease or NFLD. The research was led by Rohit Loomba, co-corresponding author and director of the NAFLD Research Center at the UC San Diego School of Medicine.

source: https://newatlas.com/medical/gut-bacteria-advanced-liver-disease-accuracy/

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Common food additive harms our gut bacteria

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The New Atlas published an article June 28 2020 about a food additive called titanium dioxide or E171, that is found to be toxic based on research by the University of Massachusetts Amherst. It turns out that the smaller nanoparticle version of this food additive with less than 100 nm in diameter may be more bioactive and more toxic, according to a study of their effects on mice.

The article acknowledges that the UMASS study of mice may or may not directly apply to humans. However, it suggests that the larger particles of titanium dioxide used as additives in food are safer. This is one of a number of studies that point toward this same result.

https://newatlas.com/health-wellbeing/e171-food-additive-gut-microbiome-inflammation-titanium-dioxide-nanoparticles/

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A "disease quadrangle"- gut microbiome link to COVID -19

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A "disease quadrangle"- gut m...
Recent June 25-26 2020 news articles in Medical News Today suggests there is a connection between our gut microbiome and various viruses including COVID-19.

One study in Cell says "microorganisms are increasingly recognized as ecosystem-relevant components because they affect the population dynamics of hosts," suggesting a four-tier influence or "disease quadrangle" by host, host microbiome, pathogen, and environment (1). This report recommends better understanding the role of microbiomes in disease dynamics. A Medical News Today article implies the traditional "disease triangle" may be obsolete. For example, in the case of malaria, a mosquito is less likely to become vulnerable to the malaria parasite if it has more bacteria belonging to the Enterobacteriaceae family in its gut (2). The Enterobacteriaceae species protects against malarial infection. Researchers have found that climate temperature has a strong effect on the growth of pathogens and gut bacteria, and therefore the spread of disease.

Which brings us to our current COVID-19 problem. It is already known that gastrointestinal symptoms are common among people testing positive for COVID-19. A stronger link still as reported by Medical News Today say research found the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in the stool of COVID-19 patients (3). Though more research is required to conclusively prove these links, there is strong evidence that these links affect the severity and risk level of patients.

One point that can't be denied is that a significant paradigm shift has arrived with the fourth factor in how we look at disease and disease prevention. Host microbiome, is a critical part of understanding how we treat and prevent diseases.

1 https://www.cell.com/trends/parasitology/fulltext/S1471-4922(20)30107-0

2 https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/amp/articles/microbiome-may-mediate-link-between-climate-change-and-new-diseases

3 https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/covid-19-could-gut-bacteria-be-involved
#bacteria #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech

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Health benefits of lavender oil

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source: depositphotos.com source: depositphotos.com
Lavender oil is distilled from the plant lavender (lavandula angustifolia). It has become one of the most popular forms of aromatherapy, according to a June 20 2020 article by Yahoo news (1). The herb contains components like linalool and linalyl which tout a long list of benefits such as improving digestion, anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, calming and soothing skin, antibacterial and antimicrobial.

One popular lavender oil Silexan was found to contain 36.8% of linalool and 34.2% of linalyl acetate26, according to a December 2019 human clinical study reported in Nature Magazine (2). The Nature report points out that anxiety disorders in United States reaches as much as 28.8% of the mostly working population, compared to 14.5% in Europe, and 20% in Australia.

Lavender oil is so concentrated that you often need to combine it with a carrier oil (like coconut, jojoba and argan oil, to name a few) before applying directly to your skin. Most reputable producers will have already included the carrier oil, ready to use.

This article was co- written by Cindy Postma, Herbsprout essential oils contributor.

1) https://www.yahoo.com/amphtml/lifestyle/16-lavender-oil-uses-way-230000614.html
2) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-54529-9

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Connection found between gut microbiome and cholesterol levels

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Research on our gut microbiome keeps rolling in, this time a June 24 2020 report by Harvard Gazette on the work of Dr. Emily Balkus of Harvard's chemistry department.

Scientists have known there to be a connection between cholesterol and the gut for centuries. The study was able to determine that the IsmA gene in gut microbiome of people they studied have 55 to 75 percent less cholesterol in their stool. “Those who have this enzyme activity basically have lower cholesterol,” said Dr. Balkus' co-senior author Ramnik Xavier, core member at the Broad Institute, co-director of the Center for Informatics and Therapeutics at MIT, and investigator at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Balskus and her associate Doug Kenny, a Ph.D. candidate in her department, sequenced the entire genome of the cholesterol-consuming hog bacterium, according to the Harvard Gazette in order to isolate the IsmA gene.

https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2020/06/the-connection-between-microbes-and-cholesterol-levels/

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How gut microbiome interact with prescription drugs

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source: dreamstime.com source: dreamstime.com
A June 10 2020 article in SciTech Daily explains "how gut bacteria metabolize drugs, and could aid the development of medications that are more effective, have fewer side effects, and are personalized to an individual’s microbiome". The research was conducted by researchers at Princeton University and led by Mohamed S. Donia, assistant professor of molecular biology.

The researchers identified 57 cases in which gut bacteria can alter existing oral medications, which can alter the medications to be less effective, not effective at all, or even toxic. Unfortunately, the Princeton study will require more detailed study of specific gut microbiome strains to isolate which bacteria are affecting the medications and how.

The SciTech Daily reported that "researchers found that some people’s microbiomes had little effect on a given drug, while other microbiomes had a significant effect," causing a wide variability between individuals tested. In addition, Princeton's Donia said it calls for studying of various drugs on the "entire intestinal microbial community.”

https://scitechdaily.com/princeton-researchers-catalog-the-gut-microbiomes-impact-on-medications/amp/

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How does exercise affect your gut microbiome?

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source: gograph.com source: gograph.com
A June 21 2020 report by Inverse found that even modest amounts of exercise can positively influence our gut microbiome. The study found that as little as a three hour brisk walk or swim per week had increased levels of the gut microbe strains Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, Roseburia hominis, and Akkermansia muciniphila, compared with sedentary individuals. Two of these species of gut bacteria, F. prausitzii and R. hominis, reduce inflammation. A. muciniphila, considered a keystone species in our gut, is associated with a lean body mass index (BMI) and improved metabolic health, according to the Inverse article.

It is well known that the microbes living in our guts are altered through diet such as dietary fiber and dairy products, which support the growth of beneficial bacteria in our gut. But mounting evidence suggests that exercise can also modify the types of bacteria that reside within our gut.

Inverse reported one study found exercise promotes the growth of bacteria that produce a fatty acid, butyrate. Butyrate can promote repair of the gut lining and reduce inflammation, therefore potentially preventing diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease and diabetes.

Inverse found a study of mice that were given a high-fat diet – increased Firmicutes and Proteobacteria in their gut, which are linked to type two diabetes and obesity.

See article at https://www.inverse.com/science/gut-health-exercise/amp

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Recommended Salt intake positively influences gut microbiome

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source: pixabay.com source: pixabay.com
According to a June 09 2020 study of 145 patients with untreated hypertension, "daily sodium intake close to the 2,300 milligrams recommended by groups like the American Heart Association, resulted in increased levels of short-chain fatty acids, an indicator of a healthy microbiome, circulating in the blood". The study was conducted by the Augusta University Medical College of Georgia led by molecular geneticist Dr. Haidong Zhu.

Short-chain fatty acids, or SCFAs, are known to play a key role in regulating your blood pressure. Dr. Zhu claims it is the first ever human study to look at how "decreasing salt intake in humans affects circulating short-chain fatty acids." However, Zhu found that the study's results were more conclusive for women than men. The article quotes Dr. Zhu saying, "We need to study it further. . . It may be that high-salt affects blood pressure through different pathways in males and females."

The study was reported by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-06/mcog-hdi060920.php .
#ai #bacteria #cardiovasculardisease #datascience #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #obesity #salt #sodium

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"One man's food is another man's poison"

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Naveen Jain, CEO, Viome. Naveen Jain, CEO, Viome.
What if? What if our current understanding of microbiomes is not ‘what if’, but ‘what is’? Because today, our understanding of healthcare has gone full circle to the conclusion that “there is no such thing as a universal healthy diet.” There is no universal healthcare solution, since every person is different down to the molecular level. Naveen Jain, CEO of Viome adds, “a diet that’s good for you, is not good for me. A diet that's good for me now won't be good for me three months from now because our microbiomes are constantly changing,” he says. “Our microbiomes to some extent controls our brain through the way they are constantly communicating with it back and forth. In fact, these bugs in our gut are like a puppet master. They tell our brain when we are hungry, they tell us what we crave. So when you crave chocolate, don't blame your brain, blame your microbiomes.”

“The interesting thing is they communicate with the micro RNA in your brain in the amygdala and prefrontal cortex. That means they (contribute to) controlling our emotional behavior and they (contribute to) controlling our decision making. They in fact modify the genetic expression of our human genes. That means it's not even what our DNA tells us. Our DNA is simply a potential of what could happen. Our genetic expression tells you actually what is happening and these guys (microbiomes) control what is actually being expressed.”

“It's really to some extent what Hypocrates stated, ‘all diseases start in the gut.’ That was two thousand years ago. ‘One man's food is another man's poison. And that is true today.’ So when your mother says to you ‘listen to your gut; do your gut check.’ That is the best science advice you can get. She knows what she is talking about.”

Referring to Viome’s transcriptome testing technology, “The technology is able to look at every single thing that's happening in the body. What genes are being expressed by your mitochondria; What genes are being expressed by your blood; What genes are being expressed by your microbiome; And it looks at all of that with artificial intelligence and tells you exactly what food to eat and what food to avoid.”

From a small stool sample, Viome is able to do this. It is able to perform a complete sequencing and identify the strain and genetics expression of a person’s entire microbiome content. This includes all the person’s bacteria, viruses, bacteriophages, archaea, fungi, yeast, and parasites, and the range of chemicals, or metabolites they create. The metabolites these microbiomes create are important to one’s health because they can produce healthy B vitamins, for example, or they can produce cancer causing agents. No other company can claim this breadth of data.

To find out more information, visit http://Viome.com .
#ai #bacteria #cardiovasculardisease #datascience #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #obesity

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