How healthy gut function demonstrates the need for diversity and the power of working together.
We all know by now the relevance and intrinsic role that gut health plays in fighting disease and defending our overall health. Our body is home to trillions of bacteria which enable us to live and function in this world. The endless tasks of these amazing organisms range from regulating our immune system to supporting brain health.
Often when you look at products (e.g probiotics or yoghurt), that contain these healthy bacteria you may notice on the packaging individual species or group names such as Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium.
Recent research done by the TwinsUK project at Kings College London, has found that focusing on how bacteria function together is proving more effective than just looking at the purpose of individual strains. So why lego? In the article linked below lego bricks are used as an analogy to show that its not the individual colours that matter but how they fit together to build something thats crucial.
How is this relevant to us? If our diet contains a diverse range of whole foods, this will encourage a rich culture within our own internal micro-biome. I’m always amazed how our physical health mirrors important concepts about our social, emotional and spiritual selves. Just as bacteria in our micro biome form together to support a healthier body, our communities become stronger and happier by bringing together diverse talents and capacities of those that inhabit them.
Some simple ways to improve diversity of our gut bacteria.
1- Increasing our intake of fibre and pre-biotics by eating more vegetables and fruit from a rainbow of colours.
2- Including fermented foods in our diet, such as live yoghurt, sauerkraut, kimchi or kombucha
I love the simplicity of the new Canadian eat well plate. (https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/). As requested by some I’ve attempted a modest plant based version that is also seasonal.