Gone are the days where an athlete's nutritional adequacy is determined by merely counting calories and perfecting protein, carbohydrate, and fat intake. Prioritizing the health of an individual's gut microbiome is the future of improving health and performance outcomes in athletes. While scientists are only getting started, the research continues to grow in support of the profound role the gut microbiome plays in not only human health but also sports performance. Athletes are often seen as the pinnacle of health, yet these individuals are subject to higher amounts of physical, mental, and emotional stress through their training and competition then the average human. In today’s presentation, Abby Grimm will discuss recent findings on the effects of the gut microbiome on performance. She will discuss practical ideas and suggestions that athletes can implement to optimize the gut microbiome through nutrition, supplementation, and lifestyle interventions that will provide them a competitive advantage.

Q&A for Session #5

  •  I have always wondered how a healthy microbiome is defined. Which microbiome serves as a reference value?
    • There is a no real way to reference a healthy gut. Look at the symptoms and make decisions on your interventions. I don't know if I can point to a specific amount. Everyone is built different.
  • For the research showing improvements in the gut linked to weight loss - was it the weight loss itself or the behavior / diet changes that were implemented as part of the weight loss regimen? Do the studies look into that at all or difficult to separate? Thanks!
    • Can go both ways, weight can influence diversity of gut but lifestyle factors is going to have an impact on weight.
  • Can Amphetamines such as, Adderall have an impact on gut health?
    • Would need to look at research specifically but most medications will disrupt intestinal barrier in one way shape or form. Can't speak to how negative or not. Primarily speaking research has been done in over the counter medications. We can assume medications can have an impact, so consider how we can suppsort and mitigate effects.
  • Are you a proponent of Veillonella atypica supplementaion for improved performance given the literature?
    • To my knowledge this has not been extrapolated yet. This is research can eventually give us more information.
  • What procedure would you take with an athlete that has been diagnosed with gastritis?
    • Acute situations, where intestinal lining enflamed need to work on calming this down so decrease HCL supplements need calming herbs, marshmellow root musilaginous herbs. Food: bland as possible no spicy, or acidic. Goal is to decrease inflammation. Liquid meals with low fiber/low acids.
  • My understanding is that probiotics doesn’t make a permanent change to the biome. With this in mind, would supplementation need to be a constant?
    • The round of antibiotics. The high potency, a lot of times we aren't using probiotics for months on end. But at the same time, a low potency for a longer period of time can healthy and beneficial especially if you are living a lifestyle - stress, nutrient depleted, unless... Megascore on microbiotics labs can be used routinely at baseline.
  • Are the micronutrients and amino acids synthesized by intestinal bacteria absorbed? I once read that the synthesis region is mainly in the large intestine, where the absorption capacity of humans for numerous micronutrients is limited.
    • Synthesized and absorbed as result of short chain fatty acid production mostly in the large intestine. Yes
  • Can you talk more on inflammatory oils? Which ones are the most troublesome and how do you help clients reduce them in their diet?
    • Most Problematic are soy bean oil/canola oil, try to limit if possible. Opt for avocado/olive oil/coconut oil when able to or as often as you can.
  • Artifical sugars affecting microbiome, is this reversible in terms of the affect that it has caused?
    • We can regenerate our gut bacteria within days. Yes definitely doable.
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