29 Jun You Are What You Eat
We’ve all heard the saying ‘you are what you eat’ but what does it really mean? Getting deep inside your gut may be the answer to understanding how what we eat, plays an important role in gut colonization with microbiomes.
So, what are these microbiomes? They are the genetic material of all microbes including; fungi, bacteria, protozoa and viruses that live both on and inside our body. There are about 100 trillion microbes in the body with the majority living in the gut, and especially in the large intestine. Bacteria in these microbiomes are extremely important as they assist in the digestion of food, regulate our immune system and protect against other bacteria which may cause disease.
Microbial imbalance can be influenced by several factors including; herbicides and pesticides used in food production, medications, stress and the environment.
Where does it all begin? Initial microbe colonization begins in the womb and is influenced in the post-natal period through infant feeding. It’s crucial that the maternal microbiome system is healthy prior to conception and right through to lactation if breast feeding. If choosing not to breastfeed, a healthy maternal microbiome will support the foetus throughout the pregnancy and delivery. As an infant’s microbiome is only fully established by the time the child reaches 3 years of age.
Listen to the full interview here with Emma Park a Functional Medicine Nutritionist.