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Fascinating insides: gut microbiota composition

Explore the range of physical and environmental factors that influence gut microbiota composition.
Fascinating Insides Gut Microbiota Composition
© Deakin University

The gut microbiota is influenced by a range of physical and environmental factors.

As we discussed in the Step 2.8, our gut microbiota is unique for each individual.

The gut microbiota composition is affected by age, health state or medication use. Many other factors may also play a role such as exercise, sleeping patterns, smoking, hygiene practices and, of course, diet.

gut microbiota composition
Factors that contribute to microbiota composition. Adapted from Quigley (2017); Singh et al. (2017) & McDonald et al. (2018).

The gut microbiota composition is also linked to different mental states, such as stress, depression, anxiety or fear, and serious mental disorders, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Investigation of gut microbiota composition, function and associations with mental health is a very new area of research. Our current understanding is that because diet impacts the gut structure and its interaction with human health, optimal dietary behaviours should have positive connotations for gut and overall health, including mental and brain health.

Your task

Review the diagram summarising the aspects of human health behaviour that has been linked to human microbiota. Discuss your thoughts in the comments below.

© Deakin University
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