Review – 5/15/17

  1. While getting a dog might be the last thing you want to do during your pregnancy, it could make for a healthier baby. Homes with pets (specifically dogs) had babies with gut bacteria associated with decreased rates of obesity and allergies. Even those homes that had pets during the pregnancy and not after had babies with healthier gut bacteria. New York Magazine


  1. Intense exercise leads to imbalanced gut bacteria and markers for leaky gut. When Norwegian soldiers were tested before and after skiing 31 miles carrying a 99-pound pack, researchers found significant changes in gut bacteria and metabolites as well as increased levels of sucralose in their urine (a marker for increased intestinal permeability). American Journal of Physiology


  1. “What is essential [to the skin] is invisible to the eye.” A balanced and diverse skin microbiome may be the key to blemish-free, glowing skin! Do these three things to improve your skin microbiome: Eat 6 servings of vegetables each day, including lots of leafy greens; purchase Manuka honey and use it as a daily face wash; visit EWG’s Skin Deep database and see how microbe-friendly your self-care products are. For more, find out how microbes are creeping into the cosmetics industry! Refinery 29


  1. A recent study quantifies the significance of breast milk on the infant gut microbiome. During the first year of life, infants received 27.7% of their gut bacteria from breast milk and 10.4% from areolar skin (a reminder for breastfeeding moms to be mindful of the self-care products they use). Beneficial composition and diversity was directly correlated to daily breast milk intake amounts, even after the introduction of solid foods. JAMA Pediatrics


  1. Have you been told, or do you suspect, that you may have SIBO? If so, you may benefit from taking a breath test for a more conclusive diagnosis. A recent review investigates the standardization of breath tests for diagnosing GI disorders, including testing indications, methods, and interpretations. The American Journal of Gastroenterology


  1. Washing hands less often, a dirtier house, and applying the 5-second rule may result in a healthier child! Studies show that more “hygienic” environments lead to increases in allergies and some illness, as well as long-term compromised immunity – and this is especially true for children! Check out the latest book on this topic, Dirt Is Good! New York Times


  1. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) can induce ulcerative colitis remission, yet the long-term success and safety of the procedure are still uncertain. More studies in this area are needed to confer long-term benefits. Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis


  1. Gut bacteria play a significant role in osteoarthritis and joint inflammation/pain in the hip and knee. Six microbiome taxonomies were positively associated with pain severity. Osteoarthritis Research Society International World Congress


  1. Scientists examined shoe soles over a 2-year period and found C. diff on 39.7% of those examined (higher than on bathroom surfaces) and conclude that shoes can be vectors for disease. While researchers agree that wearing shoes in your home isn’t something to “freak out over”, it might be best to take them off at the door. New England Journal of Medicine


  1. More diverse gut bacteria lead to fewer food cravings. Scientists use a dynamic study with fruit flies to illustrate how even a few additional strains of bacteria can prevent cravings. PLOS Biology


By: Leslie Ann Berg, MSPH