• Humans and microbes have co-evolved to share a mutually beneficial relationship 
  • Life-style factors such as hygiene practices, diet and certain medications can lead to an imbalance within the microbiome, known as dysbiosis 
  • Dysbiosis is linked with a number of health imbalances 
  • A combination of healthy lifestyle choices and probiotics supplements can help support the intestinal microbiome, which also supports general health and wellbeing 

     

    Your microbiome is made up of a diverse array of trillions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other microscopic life that together match human cells at a rate of approximately 1:1 – your microbiome is more than part of you, it is essentially ‘your other half’. [1]

    The partnership that exists between you and your microbiome is one of give and take. 

    While you provide food, shelter and protection, the naturally occurring microbes within your gut provide multiple health benefits in return.  Some of these include: 

    • Supporting digestive and gut barrier health 
    • Producing nutrients 
    • Protecting against infection 
    • Regulating your metabolism 
    • and supporting a healthy immune system.[2]

     

    If you ask me – that’s a pretty good deal! 

    Humans and microbes have co-evolved over millions of years to create this mutually beneficial, harmonious relationship.  However, sometimes certain lifestyle factors can create a state of dis-harmony within the microbiome – causing a microbial imbalance known as dysbiosis. [3]

    What is dysbiosis? 

    After a critical period of establishment during our childhood years, our microbial balance becomes relatively stable by the time we reach adulthood.[6]  However, daily lifestyle choices such as the food we eat, our hygiene practices, exercise habits and certain medications can lead to disruptions to this stability, resulting in dysbiosis. [4][5]

    Dysbiosis is a medical term which refers to an unhealthy balance within the microbiome, where numbers of healthy microbes decrease while unhealthy microbes increase.[6]  Interestingly, the meaning of the word dysbiosis translates to ‘difficult living’, a fitting description of a health imbalance so closely linked to our life-style choices.   

    Dysbiosis and the gut-organ axis 

    Traditional medicine systems have long recognised the gut as the centre of human health and it turns out they may have been well ahead of their time.[7] Recent research has shown the balance of our gut microbiome is not only important to our digestion, but also the health of distant organs, thanks to the discovery of the ‘gut-organ axis’.   This web-like link between our gut and the rest of our body (and mind), demonstrates the ability of the gut microbiome to influence the health of multiple organ systems via communication pathways such as the immune system, neurotransmitters and hormones.[8]

    While a healthy, balanced microbiome can support the health of both body and mind, dysbiosis of the gut microbiome is associated with numerous health imbalances, such as mild-anxiety, mild acne and medically diagnosed IBS, to name a few.[9][10]

    Microbiome diversity – A sign of resilience? 

    Just like diversity has long been recognised as a feature of healthy environmental ecosystems, it is also a feature of a healthy inner ecosystem (AKA the gut microbiome).[3]

    One of the key aspects of a stable and resilient gut microbiome is microbial diversity and therefore diet and lifestyle choices that help support gut microbial diversity can also help to support our general health and wellbeing. [11]

    Supporting a healthy microbiome with multi-strain probiotics supplements 

    Supporting a healthy and diverse gut microbiome may also help to support your health and wellbeing [7] and one of the ways you can support a healthy microbiome is through probiotic supplementation.[12]

    The human microbiome contains a diverse mix of microbial strains, that can work synergistically to support health.[13][14] For instance, one strain may help to support healthy bowel function, whilst another strain may help to support healthy immune system function.   

    You may have wondered why some probiotic formulations contain just one strain of probiotic, whilst others contain multiple strains. 

    While single probiotic strains can offer health benefits, research has shown that combining multiple probiotic strains within a multi-strain probiotic formula has the advantage of providing the combined probiotic benefits of the different strains. [15] The combination of multiple strains with varied functions is likely to provide a broader spectrum of health benefits, mimicking the natural synergism that exists within the gut microbiome.[9] 

    Life-Space probiotics offer multi-strain probiotic formulations that contain up to 15 probiotic strains.   

    Why? 

    At Life-Space we are led by science and inspired by nature.   

     

    If seeking specific advice on which is the best probiotics for you, talk to your health professional.  

    ___________________________

    [1]Abbott A. Scientists bust myth that our bodies have more bacteria than human cells. Nature. 2016 Jan 8;10.

    [2] Rowland I, Gibson G, Heinken A, Scott K, Swann J, Thiele I, Tuohy K. Gut microbiota functions: metabolism of nutrients and other food components. European journal of nutrition. 2018 Feb;57(1):1-24.

    [3] Prescott SL, Wegienka G, Logan AC, Katz DL. Dysbiotic drift and biopsychosocial medicine: how the microbiome links personal, public and planetary health. BioPsychoSocial medicine. 2018 Dec;12(1):1-2.

    [4]Kriss M, Hazleton KZ, Nusbacher NM, Martin CG, Lozupone CA. Low diversity gut microbiota dysbiosis: drivers, functional implications and recovery. Current opinion in microbiology. 2018 Aug 1;44:34-40.

    [5] Dudek-Wicher RK, Junka A, Bartoszewicz M. The influence of antibiotics and dietary components on gut microbiota. Przeglad gastroenterologiczny. 2018;13(2):85.

    [6] Fassarella M, Blaak EE, Penders J, Nauta A, Smidt H, Zoetendal EG. Gut microbiome stability and resilience: elucidating the response to perturbations in order to modulate gut health. Gut. 2021 Mar 1;70(3):595-605.

    [7] Bischoff SC. 'Gut health': a new objective in medicine?. BMC medicine. 2011 Dec;9(1):1-4.

    [8] Ahlawat S, Sharma KK. Gut–organ axis: a microbial outreach and networking. Letters in applied microbiology. 2021 Jun;72(6):636-68.

    [9] Kriss M, Hazleton KZ, Nusbacher NM, Martin CG, Lozupone CA. Low diversity gut microbiota dysbiosis: drivers, functional implications and recovery. Current opinion in microbiology. 2018 Aug 1;44:34-40.

    [10] Dudek-Wicher RK, Junka A, Bartoszewicz M. The influence of antibiotics and dietary components on gut microbiota. Przeglad gastroenterologiczny. 2018;13(2):85.

    [11] Lloyd-Price J, Abu-Ali G, Huttenhower C. The healthy human microbiome. Genome medicine. 2016 Dec;8(1):1-1.

    [12] Kumar R, Sood U, Gupta V, Singh M, Scaria J, Lal R. Recent advancements in the development of modern probiotics for restoring human gut microbiome dysbiosis. Indian Journal of Microbiology. 2020 Mar;60(1):12-25.

    [13] Kwoji ID, Aiyegoro OA, Okpeku M, Adeleke MA. Multi-Strain Probiotics: Synergy among Isolates Enhances Biological Activities. Biology. 2021 Apr;10(4):322.

    [14] Sarkar S. Whether viable and dead probiotic are equally efficacious?. Nutrition & Food Science. 2018 Mar 12.

    [15] Kwoji ID, Aiyegoro OA, Okpeku M, Adeleke MA. Multi-Strain Probiotics: Synergy among Isolates Enhances Biological Activities. Biology. 2021 Apr;10(4):322.