Balancing the Microbiome for Optimal Health

This is a guest post by BFF Cafe, a local paleo friendly restaurant in Reno, NV


Lately there has been a lot of buzz in the medical and nutrition communities about the human micro-biome. Some are even saying that this new science proves that we have evolved past the need for a paleo diet. I say let the science speak for itself.

The human micro-biome is the collection of trillions of microbes living in and on the human body. The bacteria in our micro-biome outnumbers human cells 9:1 and have 100 times as many genes as the human genome. (1) This is important because science has proven that the micro-biome influences everything from weight, metabolism, brain chemistry, mental health, emotions, personalities, and even our risk for some cancers. (2, 3, 4, 5)

Our micro-biome is able to adapt to different foods quickly (8). This is contradictory to the paleo school of thought.  Even though these gut microbes may adapt quickly, we cannot ignore other reactions to food, such as the inflammatory response well documented from eating grains (as in celiac disease). Grains are also linked to food sensitivities, autoimmune disorders, depression, and continue to be implicated in many other diseases in the latest literature. (6, 7)

The current research regarding our micro-biome is absolutely fascinating. When we have an imbalance in our micro-biome it is known as a condition called dysbiosis. Dysbiosis is associated with many aspects of modern day western living; from stress, to the use of hand sanitizers and overuse of antibiotics. This is where our ancestors got it right. Much of the research has proven this. The studies show that when germ-free, lean mice received a transplant of gut microbes from an obese specimen, they quickly gained weight without increased food intake. (2) Now we know the cure to permanent weight loss and over all improved health. It’s as simple as changing our own micro-biome. The way to do this is to support our gut health and lower inflammation. This can be done by changing our diet in the following ways:

Avoid the following:

  • Pasteurized Dairy
  • Grains and other refined carbohydrates
  • Added sugars
  • Trans fat and Vegetable oils
  • Most processed food

Eat more of the following:

  • Bone Broth
  • Fresh fruits and Vegetables
  • Fermented food that are rich in probiotics
  • Healthy Fats
  • Wild caught fish, grass-fed meat and cage-free eggs


There is no denying the modern western diet is flawed. It is making us fat and sick. Now we have more evidence than that we need to get back to our roots and eat to nourish our body and promote health. It’s time to simplify nutrition again and begin to heal from the inside out.



(1) Gill SR, Pop M, Deboy RT, Eckburg PB, Turnbaugh PJ, Samuel BS, et al. Metagenomic analysis of the human distal gut microbiome. Science. 2006;312:1355–9.

(2) Ridaura VK, Faith JJ, Rey FE, Cheng J, Duncan AE, Kau AL, et al. Gut microbiota from twins discordant for obesity modulate metabolism in mice. Science. 2013;341:1241214.

(3) Goodrich JK, Waters JL, Poole AC, Sutter JL, Koren O, Blekhman R, et al. Human genetics shape the gut microbiome. Cell. 2014;159:789–99.

(4) Luna RA, Foster JA. Gut brain axis: diet microbiota interactions and implications for modulation of anxiety and depression. Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2015;32:35–41.

(5) Kleiman SC, Watson HJ, Bulik-Sullivan EC, Huh EY, Tarantino LM, Bulik CM, Carroll IM. The intestinal microbiota in acute anorexia nervosa and during renourishment: relationship to depression, anxiety, and eating disorder psychopathology. Psychosom Med. 2015;77:969–81.

(6) Tatham AS, Shewry PR. Allergens to wheat and related cereals. Clin Exp Allergy. 2008 Nov; 38(11):1712-26.

(7) Sapone A, Bai JC, Ciacci C, Dolinsek J, Green PH, Hadjivassiliou M, Kaukinen K, Rostami K, Sanders DS, Schumann M, Ullrich R, Villalta D, Volta U, Catassi C, Fasano A

Spectrum of gluten-related disorders: consensus on new nomenclature and classification.

BMC Med. 2012 Feb 7; 10():13.

(8) Meng Wu, Nathan P. McNulty, Dmitry A. Rodionov, Matvei S. Khoroshkin, Nicholas W. Griffin, Jiye Cheng, Phil Latreille, Randall A. Kerstetter, Nicolas Terrapon, Bernard Henrissat, Andrei L. Osterman, Jeffrey I. Gordon. Genetic determinants of in vivo fitness and diet responsiveness in multiple human gut Bacteroides. Science  02 Oct 2015: Vol. 350, Issue 6256, DOI: 10.1126/science.aac5992

l. 350, Issue 6256, DOI: 10.1126/science.aac5992

Original Source: Balancing the Microbiome for Optimal Health


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