All about gut health?
As the name suggests, gutwellsoon is a website dedicated to sharing information about the benefits of fermentation and the role of bacteria (human microbiome) in health and wellbeing. Over the last decade, evidence has been mounting that the quality and quantity of bacteria in and on our bodies, is correlated with elements of our physical and mental health. Discussions about the gut microbiome have great prominence in this debate as gut microbiota has the greatest quantity and variety of bacteria when compared to all other parts of the body.
A key factor in maintaining a healthy gut is the food we eat, fermented foods appear to be particularly important in this regard. Gutwellsoon shares scientific findings, personal insights and links to fermentation resources. We’d invite all visitors to take a look at our terms and conditions. Whilst we do feature some personal accounts, the blog’s primary goal is to share scientific knowledge and highlight media reports. We make no claims about the information we link to on these pages, other than we think it is worth sharing. We do not offer advice for specific health conditions, although we encourage visitors to share their experiences via the comment boxes. The publishers cannot take responsibility for third party comments.
We (the publishers) began this blog after first coming into contact with home fermentation, our initial project was simply to increase the diversity of our own gut bacteria. But once you start reading about the human microbiota it becomes a compelling pursuit. Compelling because the scientific evidence linking gut bacteria (in particular) to human physical and mental health challenges many of the ideas that we generally hold to be reliable. For example that what we eat is related to mental health conditions like depression. Dysfunctional eating has long been seen as a symptom of depression, stress or anxiety. Increasingly science is demonstrating that what we eat may be part of the cause rather than a symptom.
A key issue to consider is correlation, often physical and mental health problems are correlated to gut flora. That means people with a certain microbial signature appear more likely to suffer from a particular disease. The relationship between the disease and the microbiota is not always clear, but it is generally assumed that improving gut health is fairly simple. This opens a door to a radical change in how we think about illness. Firstly we can instantly reduce the risk of developing a wide range of health problems by changing our diet, secondly, we might be able to treat or even cure certain conditions with simple and inexpensive changes to diet. This is where the benefits of fermentation start to become apparent, some fermented foods such as sauerkraut and kefir are known to introduce literally billions of beneficial microbes into your digestive tract, cheaply and safely. Many fermented foods are traditional but there is growing evidence that some commercially available fermented products contain less beneficial bacteria that you would expect to find if you made them at home. I now drink homemade soya kefir every morning and orange kefir every evening, I also regularly ferment cabbage and ginger. Based on personal observation this small change has made significant changes to my health.
So this is the background to why we blog about fermentation, it would appear to offer cheap and simple life-changing benefits to most of the population. Do some research and you will find strong evidence linking human microbes to migraines, depression, obesity, poor memory, anxiety and even Alzheimer’s disease. There is a second point to make, food that restricts or damages gut flora can also be harmful. There are a number of important studies that show diet has been correlated with cancer (for example colon and breast cancer), therefore inevitably any discussion linked to the microbiome and fermentation overlaps into diet and health more generally.
We always welcome feedback, please leave comments if you have something to share.