Exercise is so Good, You Can Feel it in Your Gut. Literally.
The discussion of what we eat and how it affects our gut is becoming more and more of a hot topic. But two new studies find that eating and drinking aren’t the only activities that can change your microbial environment — it may also be how much (or little) you exercise.
A new study looked at mice and the microbes inside their tiny guts after separating them into multiple groups, according to this article:
…one group of mice was sedentary, the other group had access to a running wheel (the exercise group), while the remaining group was sedentary and germ-free, meaning that they did not possess any gut microbiota due to being bred in a sterile environment.
And when they transferred fecal matter from these subjects to other mice, the mice who received microbes from the mice who had exercised had less inflammation and a better immune system.
But if you’re not impressed by the mice study, there is also a study of 32 sedentary people, 14 of which were obese, who went through an exercise plan, according to the same article:
30–60 minutes of endurance exercise, 3 days per week, for a total of 6 weeks. Once the 6-week exercise program ceased, subjects were asked to revert to sedentary behavior for 6 weeks.
Their diets were the same in an effort to gauge if exercise could affect the gut.
Everyone, but especially the lean subjects, saw an increase in healthy microbiata. And when did it decrease again? When they went back to their sedentary ways.
This is only two studies, but if you’ve been wandering through the probiotic aisle and considering trying to improve your gut bacteria, maybe look into some exercise before you start popping those capsules.