New link between gut bacteria and hardening of the arteries, study reveals
(NaturalHealth365) As you may know, diversity and balance of gut bacteria have already been linked to many vital aspects of physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Now, new research out of the University of Nottingham and King’s College London is adding heart health to that list.
Digestion, metabolic function and the strength of our immune system are all intimately tied to the health of the gut microbiome. A lack of balance and ideal variety of ‘friendly’ bacteria can lead to chronic inflammation and diseases of the entire digestive system, circulation and lymphatics.
The fact is: inadequate gut bacteria balance can easily lead to diabetes (which damages the cardiovascular system) and obesity (a major trigger for all sorts of chronic disease conditions).
Balance and diversity in gut bacteria are crucial for a long-term quality of life
The adequate and appropriate amount of gut bacteria diversity in the digestive system and gut microbiome has now been found to have a direct effect on cardiovascular disease risk, according to the UK researchers. Hardening of the arteries. in particular, is a major consequence of gut issues.
For the study, medical information from 617 female twins in middle age was examined. The volunteers were recruited from the TwinsUK registry – a national registry of adult twins maintained for assistance in data-based research.
Arterial stiffening in the participants was measured using carotid-femoral pulse-wave velocity (PWV), the gold standard method of measuring this marker. The results were assessed alongside data related to the gut microbiome composition of these women.
Conclusion: The risk of cardiovascular disease was reduced by supporting gut bacteria diversity and microbiome health
The results indicated a significant correlation between diversity of the gut microbes and artery health.
After adjusting for blood pressure and metabolic variations, arterial stiffness was found to be higher across the boards in women who had a lower level of gut bacteria diversity.
Specific microbes were also linked with lowered risk for arterial stiffening. The same microbes have already been associated with lowered risk for obesity.
The University of Nottingham researchers had noted that a substantial proportion of serious cardiovascular issues and events such as heart attacks aren’t explained by the usual risk factors, including smoking and obesity. Hardening of the arteries is believed to be the cause of cardiovascular disease in these groups.
The results point to the promise of using gut bacteria levels to help determine cardiovascular disease risk. However, the results also add to the evidence that gut bacteria diversity and a healthy microbiome are crucial to many areas of health. These research results were published in the European Heart Journal and funded by the MRC and The British Heart Foundation.
Action steps: Prebiotics, probiotics and fiber are the key to a healthy gut microbiome
A healthy gut environment can be supported through dietary choices. Eating a sufficient amount of fiber from organic vegetables and fruit and, as needed, supplementing with prebiotics and probiotics can go a long way toward restoring the digestive system.
Some of the best foods to eat for digestive health include: fermented or pickled vegetables, miso soup, tempeh and sauerkraut. Naturally, if you’re suffering with serious digestive disorders or immune-related problems – talk to an experienced integrative healthcare provider to map out a plan that works best for you.
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