Our microbiome is an important organ

Our health is influenced by the bacteria in our intestine. The large intestine can even be seen as an independent organ that has a role in our immune system, mood and (mental) performance. Furthermore, the gut has its own nervous system for regulation, the enteric nervous system.

For proper gut health we are dependent on a healthy bacterial population residing in our intestine, which is termed the “microbiome”. The microbiome consists of fungi, archaea, bacteria and viruses. However, bacteria are by far the most prevalent type of organism in the gut. The microbiome produces several types of hormones, vitamins and neurotransmitters by means of enzymatic and catalytic activities, which are important for a normal functioning of the human host.

Scientific research has gained an increasing understanding of which and in what way the microbiome influences human health and disease. The composition of the microbiome is influenced by genetic factors, but is for an important part regulated by lifestyle, diet, sleep pattern, exercise and stress.

Using a validated method for determining microbial composition, MyMicroZooTM can determine which bacteria and in what abundance are present in the large intestine.

The microbiome and nutrition

Our diet consists of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, supplemented with minerals and vitamins. The major part of the protein, fat and carbohydrate is catabolized and taken up by the body. In contrast, dietary fibers and other longer types of carbohydrate chains, are not degraded and absorbed fully by the gut and intestine, respectively, and are subsequently used by the microbiome as a source of nutrients.

There are different types of dietary fibers, such as those in fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds. The consumption of sufficient amounts of dietary fiber (30-60 grams per day) is crucial for the maintenance and stimulation of the bacteria in the microbiome. Using the output of your MyMicroZooTM test, one of our associated healthcare professionals can interpret your microbiome composition and the relation to your current lifestyle- health- and nutritional status. He or she can then subsequently devise a personal plan with you to reach your health-goals.

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