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HomescienceScience explains the relationship between a healthy gut and heart

Science explains the relationship between a healthy gut and heart

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Ultra-processed foods are linked to chronic diseases. Understanding the relationship between a healthy gut and heart – iStock/Getty Images

Composed of a unique blend of bacteriaAnd fungi, parasites and viruses. Your gut microbiome brings together a collection of trillions of microorganisms that live in your gut and have wide-ranging impacts on your health. That's because the way you function reflects your genes, your age, the medications you take — and, most importantly, what you eat.

This is what many studies have shown when, over two decades, they explored how gut microbes and their breakdown products (metabolites) relate to bacteria. Heart disease.

The results support the medical playbook recommended by health experts, which emphasizes the gains from a primarily plant-based diet and suggests reducing consumption of highly processed foods. Doing so can help promote a more diverse and healthy microbiome.

Gut health and heart function

On the other hand, a nutrient-poor diet can lead to dysbiosis, which is an overgrowth of harmful microbes. This is what happens when harmful microbes thrive in the gut, forming pro-inflammatory breakdown products. Inflammation contributes to obesity, mental health problems, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Fermented foods

Eating fermented foods can help reduce inflammation in the body. This includes yogurt or kefir, which is a drink similar to yogurt, with a citrusy flavor and thinner texture than yogurt.

While both products are typically made with milk, they also come in dairy-free versions made with almond, coconut, or oat milk.

Another interesting drink is kombucha, which is a fizzy, acidic and slightly sweet drink made from fermented tea, usually flavored with fruits and herbs.

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If you're a fan of spicy food, try kimchi, a dish of spicy, sautéed Korean fermented cabbage made with a mixture of garlic, salt, vinegar, and chili pepper.

From Japan come miso (a strong, salty paste made from fermented soybeans with brown rice) and tempeh (a hard, chewy product made from fermented soybeans).

Diversify your diet

The ideal solution, according to experts, is to eat a wide range of different fruits and vegetables regularly to bring biodiversity into your microbiome.

Whole grains such as oats, quinoa, spelled and barley are healthy options. Other foods that promote gut health include beans, lentils, nuts and seeds.

Fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains are good sources of fermentable or prebiotic fiber, which is broken down by bacteria in the colon to form short-chain fatty acids.

These compounds then spread through the bloodstream and interact with receptors on cells that suppress inflammation.

These fatty acids also appear to play a role in maintaining blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

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