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How to keep your gut healthy over the holidays

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Published Friday 22 December 2017
By Yella Hewings-Martin PhD 
Fact checked by Jasmin Collier

This year has seen a steep increase in our appreciation of the trillions of microbes that share our bodies. So, here are our tips for keeping your microbial passengers happy over the holidays.

Gone are days when we saw the plethora of microorganisms that colonize our bodies as mere hitchhikers.

Today, we appreciate that our gut microbiota plays a crucial role in our health. We need to keep our tiny partners-in-crime happy; if we don't, things can go sour rather quickly.

Dr. Sven Pettersson ' a professor of metabolic disorders at the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine in the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore ' and colleagues explain in a review article in the journal Cell, out earlier this month, that our gut microbiome naturally changes throughout our lifetime.

What starts out as a simple collection of a handful of bacteria matures into a complex microbial ecosystem, heavily influenced by factors including our diet, lifestyle, hormones, and immune system.

Imbalances in our gut flora are linked to a steady rise in conditions such as food allergy, eczema, asthma, autism spectrum disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, and cancer.

So, as the year draws to a close and we sit back and take stock over the holidays, let's look at what can we do to look after our gut microbes, especially at a time marked by calorific excesses.

Read the full article at Medical News Today

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