When it comes to the gastrointestinal microbiome, most people are either unaware or have very recently learned of it. This is to be expected as it is a relatively new field of research. An obvious question arises: “What have I been doing that can harm the health of my microbiota?” One of the first places to consider is the diet. Can certain diets influence the microbiota in a significant way?

An animal study researched the way dietary fat altered the gut microbiome. They tested three diets: a high-fat diet, a low fat diet, and a medium fat diet. It was shown that the different fat content led to variation, which affected appetite control. As a separate measure, they added L. rhamnosus into the diets as a probiotic food additive. The probiotic was found to have a therapeutic effect. By modulating the intestinal microflora, the intestinal structure was preserved and inflammation had been reduced. It is suggested that the probiotic may beneficially alter the metabolism of lipids, which can ultimately be used to attenuate obesity and related metabolic disorders.

Falcinelli, S., Rodiles, A., Hatef, A., Picchietti, S., Cossignani, L., Merrifield, D. L., … Carnevali, O. (2017). Dietary lipid content reorganizes gut microbiota and probiotic L. rhamnosus attenuates obesity and enhances catabolic hormonal milieu in zebrafish. Scientific Reports, 7, 5512. http://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-05147-w