Nourish Your Body's Microbiomes
Nourish Your Body's Microbiomes
The more we learn about health and nutrition, the more we come to an understanding of the importance of supporting health and wellbeing from within. The microbiomes of the body evolve over time and are influenced by complex interrelations including early microbiome development, hereditary, dietary, developmental, environmental, illness, medication and lifestyles factors.
So, what is a microbiome?
A microbiome is a term used to describe the environment of the bacteria and micro-organisms that live on and within our body. For instance, the health of our gut flora has a great deal of influence over our overall health and immune function. What we ingest and our daily diet can have wide ranging effects on our physical, emotional and even our mental wellbeing.
Our immune system and its responses can be impacted by the health of our skin and gut microbiomes. The skin is the largest organ of the body and acts as a barrier to infection and environmental triggers. It can also provide clues to what may be occurring internally. The skin’s microbiome responds to and provides important inter-cellular stimulus for supporting body homeostasis. Repercussions of microbiome imbalance may include skin irritation, increased allergic sensitivity, odour, excessive skin and scalp oiliness or dryness.
Our gut flora requires nourishment and balancing of dietary nutrients. Too much or too little of one thing can create imbalances that when unmanaged may lead to chronic digestive conditions such as Leaky Gut. Certain triggers in the diet for people with intolerances and allergies can have wide ranging negative impacts. There is also a growing recognition of the importance of a healthy gut microbiota to neurological function, as it has a signalling role in the central nervous system regulating neuroinflammation and monitoring cell survival. Imbalanced gut microbiota composition and relationships is strongly related to a range of diseases and is an important nutritional focus and therapy.
How can we nourish our body’s microbiomes?
Sulfates, such as sodium lauryl sulfate, and harsh detergents can be damaging to the skin surface so be mindful when choosing products for your skin, hair, and oral care. Alternative choices for providing hydration and health benefits for the skin and scalp are natural oils and body butters. Check with your doctor, dermatologist, nutritionist, or naturopath for further advice about specific products that may be best suited for you, particularly relating to chronic skin issues.
Biotic (pre, pro and post) ingredients are also gaining increased attention for the health benefits for microbiomes, particularly relating to gut and digestive health. But what are biotics? Simply put prebiotics is the food that the microbiome consumes, probiotics are helpful strains of living bacteria (microorganisms) and postbiotics are what have been produces by the action of a probiotic that provides a beneficial effect for the microbiome.
Both the skin and gut microbiomes can be supported by making healthy nutritional choices and incorporating biotics into the diet through natural food sources such as dietary fibres, fermented foods, conjugated linoleic acid sources such as grass fed ruminant protein and dairy, and polyunsaturated fatty acid (good fats) rich foods such as oily fish, walnuts, sunflower seeds and oils, and flax seeds and oils.
When you are prescribed specific oral and topical medications by your doctor or medical professional discuss with them the potential impact on body microbiomes and how this can be minimised. Types of probiotics and nutritional supplements may be recommended based upon the specific medications and your health context.
How can collagen support body microbiomes?
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and provides structure to skin, muscle and bones. Proteins are essential nutrients that fuel our body and are the building blocks of body tissue. Nutraviva provides a range of premium collagen products providing both skin and gut microbiome benefits.
Collagen Hydrolysate and Marine Collagen are hydrolysed collagen powders that are pre-digested and highly bioavailable for digestion ensuring maximum availability of amino acids. Collagen is more commonly associated with improving skin health and joint pain rather than the gut and digestive system, however it can have significant benefits for soothing and nourishing the gut as well as improving digestive tissue integrity.
Bone broth has been long associated with maintaining a healthy immune and digestive system. Nutraviva Bone Broth powder provides a nutrient rich multi-collagen with micronutrients, minerals, and vitamins.
Beef Gelatin is a naturally beneficial source of amino acids in a longer chain protein form. It has a slower digestibility than collagen hydrolysate powder, providing both a satiating and long-lasting coating properties for the gut. As well as supporting skin health through strengthened collagen fibres and connective tissues. Nutraviva Gelatin contains a unique amino acid profile that consists of 20% glycine, 10% glutamine, 12% proline and 12% hydroxyproline which are the building blocks necessary to restore and regenerate collagen inside the body. It can be easily used as a base to make delicious healthy gummies, see our gut health boosting recipe for home-made gummies here.
At Nutraviva we provide a plant based vegan option, Vegan Collagen Alternative, that provides a comparative amino acid profile per serve to animal sourced collagen hydrolysate powders. This carefully selected suite of superfoods includes probiotics specially designed for gut microbiota support.
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Written by Liz Golsby, Digital Marketing Manager, Nutraviva Ba MTeach DipHSc.