The Skinny on Poop
Why should a girl care about microbes and poop? Best left to those who can appreciate the digestion process, like eight year old boys. Right? Except, did you know a mouse could be made fat or skinny depending on their gut microbes? If two mice are in a the same cage with the same food, but one mouse is given the poop from a fat person,* and the other mouse the poop from a skinny person, the mouse with the poop from the fat person will become fat, while the mouse with the poop from the skinny person will remain skinny. That’s right, there is fat and skinny poop.
By manipulating their gut bacteria, mice can be made fat, skinny, social, reclusive, even sexy… to the other mice. So, how does one get the skinny, social, sexy gut bacteria?
An interesting finding is that smoking changes gut bacteria and, when a person stops smoking, their gut bacteria changes into the gut bacteria of a fat person. Weight gain after smoking cessation could be avoided by actively restoring a healthy gut bacteria balance. While we get our microbiome from our mother, lifestyle can change the bacterial balance and our health.
This is a link to Rob Knight’s Ted Talk about our microbiome. It is a fun and informative way to spend 10 minutes.
This is a link to American Gut, where you can have your poop tested for your microbiome.
*a fecal transplant. That’s right, putting someone else’s poop into another person. Sounds gross, unless it could cure a disease, then it sounds like a good plan.
**good bacteria are responsible for our vitamins, minerals, hormones, neurotransmitters, endocrine production and appetite.
***bad bacteria are really good at making fat cells even fatter.
By: Linda Soloniuk, RN, MA
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