The phrase, �You are what you eat� implies that the way we are defines us as the food we all consumed. However, our gut tells us otherwise as the food we eat, may in fact be leading us to obesity. Our gut plays a role in our overall health, when we eat good food our gut is happy and when we eat bad food our gut will tell us by fighting off the bad food. A recent study showed us that the bacteria in our gut produce amyloid and lipopolysaccharides. These two microbiomes seem to show us that together, with proper dieting that these microbiomes can prevent Alzheimer�s Disease.
As the microbiomes and the bacteria that co-exist in our gut, there are the two most predominant groups that have also played a key role in our lifestyle: gram-positive Firmicutes and gram-negative Bacteroidetes- both play a huge role in obesity. Firmicutes are bad bacteria that lead us to obesity. When we eat processed food and sugars, our body starts to crave it more, thus leading us to be overweight.
When we eat junk food, all that sugar and fat are feeding the Firmicutes. Firmicutes thrive on sugar since our bodies need it and it can be both good or bad While Bacteroidetes are the good bacteria that leads us to a healthy gut. Bacteroidetes are in the stomach regions as well as the Firmicutes. These two predominant bacteria groups tell us that the food we eat can actually affect our bodies when we eat bad foods or good foods.
However, Dr. Kristen Senella mentioned that we all have a different balance of Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes since we are all different shapes and sizes. Depending on our health and food lifestyle, we can have either a low Firmicutes and a high Bacteroidetes or a high Firmicutes and a low Bacteroidetes. Plus, having either a high or low count of Firmicutes can lead to weight gain or weight loss; depending on which healthy lifestyle and exercise regime you are following.
Gram-positive bacteria will appear blue or violet, while gram-negative bacteria will appear red or pink under the microscope. When studying the gut and the bacteria groups that it is hosting, scientist use mice to study how their guts react to different diets they are put through so that way we, as humans, can take either pills to help our bodies maintain a healthy lifestyle or to read and do our own research. One group is fed in a healthy lifestyle and doesn�t experience diseases or ailments that we face. And the other group is fed with a bad lifestyle where they are prone to many of the diseases and fatigue as their life span is shortened very quickly. In order for us to actually maintain a healthy lifestyle and importantly feel good is to make sure our Firmicutes are not too dangerously low, but we can control it with probiotics.
Probiotics can vary from yogurt, fermented vegetables, kombucha, and miso. But there are certain companies that also reign supreme in the probiotic market. Activia yogurt and Yakult are two of the most well-known companies that use the live microorganisms to help us maintain a healthy lifestyle as well as keeping our gut�s microbiome in check. When we have some sort of probiotic foods in our system, we are preventing certain ailments and diseases going out of control. Like our cholesterol, blood pressure, being lactose intolerant, or recurring abdominal pains.
When we mix probiotics into our food when we are trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, we can see a vast improvement in how we have more energy, we feel full that we don�t have to overeat or mindless snacking, and overall we feel good in our gut as we go through our daily routine. From 2007 to now, roughly 3.9 million Americans use probiotics to maintain a healthy gut, however, those probiotics are just a fraction of what the six types of foods that can help maintain a healthy gut microbiome to help support a healthy lifestyle.
For instance, a good healthy lifestyle is eating your basic food groups; whether it be plant-based or omnivorous, as well as, exercising a couple of times out of the year. A bad healthy lifestyle is eating processed food and not exercising, which leads to obesity and cardiac arrest. Depending on the person and the efforts that they are willing to maintain a healthy lifestyle, they can achieve longevity by taking care of their gut first and foremost.
Family In Kitchen Making Morning Breakfast Together
Let�s start with protein. Protein can vary with lean meats like chicken and beef or plant-based like beans, legumes or tofu. Any of these types of protein can help our bodies by making us make our muscles grow, but also control the bacteria in our guts. Next up is fats. Fats can vary like good and bad bacteria. There are good fats like fish, nuts, olive oil, and avocado; as well as, bad fats like butter, lard, and fatty foods. Granted that we can overindulge on the trans fats as there are many fast-food chains, but we can moderate ourselves to not eat out at fast food joints all the time.
Yes, they are cheap and easy to access, however now and days, we as humans are now cooking more in our homes and meal prepping our meals to be healthier. Digestible and Non-Digestible Carbohydrates are mostly starch, sugars, and fibers. These two food groups can make our gut feel happy or upset depending on the food we consume. Sugars, starches, and fibers help our bodies by feeling full with the starches, the fibers help our bowel movements in case our gut feels bloated, and the sugars gives us microburst of energy for our fast-paced lives.
Fermented & Polyphenols
The last two food groups are fermented food and Polyphenols. Both of these food groups have amazing properties since we see them everywhere in the food market, hiding in plain sight. Fermented foods like yogurt and kimchi are a few examples of ways of keeping our guts happy and stopping many diseases. Polyphenols are antioxidant foods like dark chocolate, berries, dark greens, and certain fruits. These help our gut curb that sugar hunger and all in all taste really good.
All in all, our gut microbiomes are important to us and our overall health as we all try to maintain and achieve a healthy lifestyle. The phrase �we are what we eat� still implies to all of us, however, it is up to us to actually put in the work and constantly try out different foods to make sure that our gut is still functioning properly. No matter which diet you choose, pick one that will work with your body and your gut since we all are made differently. But our gut should be the first thing that we should listen to.
Dr. Alex Jimenez Discusses Microbiome and Methylation
Research studies have demonstrated that our microbiome can help regulate our DNA methylation. The human microbiome is considered to be a counterpart to the human genome. In current research studies, the methylation of intestinal epithelial cells was determined to be considerably abnormal in germ-free mouse models when compared with conventional controls. This research study also demonstrated that bacteria introduced through fecal transplants considerably increased CpG methylation.
Moreover, research studies have determined that gut microbes may also produce butyrate, which can potently prevent the development of histone deacetylase, ultimately affecting the function of DNA methylation. Researchers have discussed that these outcome measures suggest our microbiome may play a fundamental role in host epigenetic regulation, beyond digestive health.
Specific types of bacteria may also cause different effects on DNA methylation. In one human pilot research study, increased levels of the bacterial phylum Firmicutes, compared to the bacterial phylum Bacteroidetes, were associated with the increased methylation of 568 genes as well as the decreased methylation of 245 genes (P=0.05). The affected genes were associated with a variety of health issues, including inflammation, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Previous research studies in humans have also identified various ratios of the bacterial phylum Firmicutes and the bacterial phylum Bacteroidetes in overweight and obese individuals.
Gut Microbiota and Nutrient Status
Our gut microbiota can also affect our nutrient status and this may also indirectly affect our or DNA methylation. The majority of Lactobacillus species are in vitro consumers of folate with the exception of L. plantarum strains which can produce folate in the presence of para-aminobenzoic acid, or PABA. Many Bifidobacteria species, including strains of B. bifidum and B. infantis, can also produce folate, along with B. breve, B. longum, B. adolescentis, and B. pseudocatenulatum. Many of these species also produce folate in both its THF and 5mTHF forms, with B. adolescentis producing the highest levels of methylated folate.
In vivo, the administration of B. adolescentis, referred to as MB 227 and MB 239, and B. pseudocatenulatum, referred to as MB 116, increased serum folate levels in folate-deficient rats and the co-administration of prebiotic fructans increased serum folate levels further in folate-deficient rats. While human folate absorption generally occurs in the small intestine, it can also occur in the colon. By way of instance, the administration of B. longum in hemodialysis patients decreased serum homocysteine levels the same as serum folate levels increased in folate-deficient through the administration of a variety of bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract.
Furthermore, abnormal populations of bacteria in the small intestine can prevent normal nutrient absorption and appetite signaling, ultimately affecting DNA methylation. An abnormal microbiome may also cause inflammation which, as we have previously discussed, can also affect methylation. A healthy microbiome can ultimately be achieved through proper nutrition and lifestyle habits. Smoothies and juices, such as those described below, can also help improve DNA methylation as well as promote a healthy microbiome.
The human microbiota is made up of 10 to 100 trillion symbiotic microbial cells, most of these which primarily consist of gut bacteria. The role of our microbiome is fundamental towards our overall health and wellness, especially when it comes to DNA methylation activity and status, according to research studies. The human microbiota is important for a variety of bodily functions and recent research studies have demonstrated that an abnormal microbiome can tremendously affect methylation, a chemical process which affects the function of genes as well as gene expression and promotes several essential functions.
Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight
Smoothies and Juices for Methylation Support
While many healthcare professionals can recommend nutritional guidelines and lifestyle modifications to improve methylation support, there are several options you can try yourself at home. As described above, methylation support supplementation should be determined by a healthcare professional. Smoothies and juices are a fast and easy way to include all the necessary nutrients you need for methylation support without any side-effects. The smoothies and juices below are part of the Methylation Diet Food Plan.
Sea Green Smoothie Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes � 1/2 cup cantaloupe, cubed � 1/2 banana � 1 handful of kale or spinach � 1 handful of Swiss chard � 1/4 avocado � 2 teaspoons spirulina powder � 1 cup water � 3 or more ice cubes Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until completely smooth and enjoy!
Berry Bliss Smoothie Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes � 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen, preferably wild) � 1 medium carrot, roughly chopped � 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed or chia seed � 1 tablespoons almonds � Water (to desired consistency) � Ice cubes (optional, may omit if using frozen blueberries) Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy. Best served immediately!
Sweet and Spicy Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes � 1 cup honeydew melons � 3 cups spinach, rinsed � 3 cups Swiss chard, rinsed � 1 bunch cilantro (leaves and stems), rinsed � 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped � 2-3 knobs whole turmeric root (optional), rinsed, peeled and chopped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Ginger Greens Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes � 1 cup pineapple cubes � 1 apple, sliced � 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped � 3 cups kale, rinsed and roughly chopped or ripped � 5 cups Swiss chard, rinsed and roughly chopped or ripped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Zesty Beet Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes � 1 grapefruit, peeled and sliced � 1 apple, washed and sliced � 1 whole beet, and leaves if you have them, washed and sliced � 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Protein Power Smoothie Serving: 1 Cook time: 5 minutes � 1 scoop protein powder � 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed � 1/2 banana � 1 kiwi, peeled � 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon � Pinch of cardamom � Non-dairy milk or water, enough to achieve desired consistency Blend all ingredients in a high-powered blender until completely smooth. Best served immediately!
ProLon� Fasting Mimicking Diet
Balanced methylation support can be achieved through proper nutrition. The ProLon� fasting mimicking diet offers a 5-day meal program which has been individually packed and labeled to serve the foods you need for the FMD in precise quantities and combinations. The meal program is made up of ready-to-eat or easy-to-prepare, plant-based foods, including bars, soups, snacks, supplements, a drink concentrate, and teas. The products are scientifically formulated and great tasting. Before starting the ProLon� fasting mimicking diet, 5-day meal program, please make sure to talk to a healthcare professional to find out if the FMD is right for you. The ProLon� fasting mimicking diet can help promote methylation support, among a variety of other healthy benefits.
Many doctors and functional medicine practitioners may suggest evaluating a patient’s microbiome to determine their DNA methylation status. Through proper nutrition and lifestyle habits, a healthy microbiome can improve methylation. The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal and nervous health issues as well as functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .
Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez
Additional Topic Discussion: Acute Back Pain
Back pain is one of the most prevalent causes of disability and missed days at work worldwide. Back pain attributes to the second most common reason for doctor office visits, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections. Approximately 80 percent of the population will experience back pain at least once throughout their life. Your spine is a complex structure made up of bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles, among other soft tissues. Injuries and/or aggravated conditions, such as herniated discs, can eventually lead to symptoms of back pain. Sports injuries or automobile accident injuries are often the most frequent cause of back pain, however, sometimes the simplest of movements can have painful results. Fortunately, alternative treatment options, such as chiropractic care, can help ease back pain through the use of spinal adjustments and manual manipulations, ultimately improving pain relief.
Formulas for Methylation Support
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