Foods which look similar in terms of nutrition labels could actually have huge different effects on the gut microbiome, suggests a new study.
For the study, the researchers examined the stool and diets samples of 34 participants for 17 days in order to determine how various different foods affect their microbiome, in spite of them appearing to be the same nutritionally.
The gut microbiome of a healthy person includes an array of different bacteria and medical professionals have always wanted to determine how the microbiome associates to health as well as disease both.
The researchers instructed all the participants to maintain a record of everything they consumed over the course of 17 days. They collected the stool samples of them daily.
The analysis of the findings suggested that the correlation between what one eats and what is happening with the gut microbes isn’t the same as the researchers expected it to be before the study.
Instead, the researchers saw a much closer association dietary changes and the gut microbiome at the time they considered how different foods were linked to one another rather than just their nutrition labels. For instance, leafy veggies like kale and spinach showed a similar effect on the gut microbiome while another kind of vegetable such as tomato or carrot might have a varied impact, even when the traditional nutrient labels are similar.
However, according to senior study author Dan Knights from the University of Minnesota, further study is required before one can better understand how the entire range of nutrients present in food influences how the gut microbiome reacts to what one eats.