There is no denying that the world has changed since COVID-19.
If you contract this virus there are certain factors which are out of your control which can influence the severity of your symptoms such as pre-existing lung conditions and asthma.
There are also conditions like having type two diabetes and obesity which increase your risk of developing more severe symptoms associated with this virus. New research now suggests that the health of your gut may influence how severe you experience COVID-19.
Stool samples of those with different severities of COVID-19 were assessed. Those with more severe symptoms had different microbe varieties in their gut compared to those with no or minimal symptoms.
Those with more severe COVID0-19 had more markers of inflammation which is a characteristic of an imbalance in your gut microbiome.
The ability to fight off COVID-19 is impacted on the ability of your immune system to work at its best. Over 70% of your immune system is in your gut.
It makes sense that when the microbes which live in your gut are not promoting optimal immune system function that your body will be more easily susceptible to greater symptoms associated with COVID-19.
The good news is that you have power to positively impact the health of your gut. An adult needs between 25-38g of dietary fibre each day for gut health.
By achieving your recommended daily intake of dietary fibre, you will promote the types of fibre needed to keep your gut working at its best and feeding the healthy types of microbes in your body.
A good goal is to aim for 30 different plant foods each week to maximise the types of prebiotic fibre and nutrition components which benefits the health of your gut.
Another important component to promoting gut health is by including probiotic foods and beverages. Probiotic foods contain good bacteria which support the health of your body.
By including two serves of different types of probiotic foods and beverages each day this can help keep your gut microbiome in a healthy balance.
Foods which are a source of probiotics include yoghurt, kimchi, miso, tempeh, kombucha, natto, green olives, and kefir.
Aus Natural Protein Grass-Fed Whey has a good source of dietary fibre in the form of inulin. It's a prebiotic that keeps your body regular and is perfect for keeping your gut biome in check.
Add yoghurt to your smoothie next time for a delicious taste, and also adds in probiotics to your daily supplement.
Take home message: Promote an optimal immune system and help to protect your body from the worst symptoms associated with COVID-19. One key component of an optimal functioning immune system is a healthy gut microbiome.
- Yeoh YK, Zuo T, Lui GC, et alGut microbiota composition reflects disease severity and dysfunctional immune responses in patients with COVID-19 Gut Published Online First: 11 January 2021. doi: 10.1136/gutjnl-2020-323020