Starting From the Bottom Up – Going From Poop to Food Can Get Researchers Closer to Answers

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In California, researchers at the Center for Microbiome Innovation analyzed over 9,000 samples of fecal matter to study the microbiomes in our guts, but they found that, surprisingly, people on similar diets had vastly different gut bacteria. Their quest to find out why this happens takes them from analyzing poop to analyzing what we eat.

Microbiologists are launching the initiative by the end of this year and will be analyzing 1,000 different types of foods from all the food groups to see how the microbes on our food affects our crucial gut bacteria health. Rob Knight, one of the founders of the American Gut Project told Smithsonian Magazine, “When you get down to the microscopic level, we know very little about what we’re consuming.”

Their goal is to get that missing microbial information about our food to hopefully help us find the right foods to eat to improve our gut bacteria and be healthy and fight disease.