Day: May 5, 2017

How Dietary Fats Influence the Microbiome

Dietary Fat and MicrobiomeThe types of fat that we consume in our diet tend to affect the makeup of our gut Microbiome. There are two major types of dietary fats. Saturated (or bad fats) and unsaturated fats. Saturated fats that come from animal-based foods like beef, whole-fat milk, cheese, and butter have a negative impact on the gut microbiota and lead to obesity. In contrast, unsaturated plant-based fats (like fish oil) play a vital role in maintaining a balance of healthy gut flora, and so do not contribute to obesity. How do dietary fats alter the gut Microbiome? Alternatively, how does the gut Microbiome influence the metabolism of dietary fat?


Gut Microbiome Communicates with the Dietary Fats

Scientists have been able to locate a crosstalk between the microbiota and dietary fats. [1] Dietary consumption of saturated fats lowers the level of healthy gut bacteria. The altered Microbiome is then capable of harvesting energy from the dietary fat. [2] Additionally, overweight/obese individuals with metabolic disorder exhibit higher proportion of unhealthy gut bacteria that are capable of harvesting surplus energy from the dietary nutrients. This is probably due to the reduced metabolism of dietary fats in obese individuals. Hence, the microbiota and dietary fats can be considered as a two-way traffic where the Microbiome influences the metabolism of dietary fats or vice versa, consumption of dietary fats plays a role in shaping our Microbiome.


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