The human gut is typically a microbial eco-system with a fascinating diversity of microbial populations, often described as the gut microbiota, gut flora and the gut microbiome. The gut microbiome comprises of various archaeal, bacterial, viral, fungal, and protozoan species that live in a symbiotic relationship in the human gut (Moszak et al, 2020).
The benefits to the host from the gut microbiome include the biosynthesis of essential vitamins like K and vitamin B, protection from inflammation and pathogenic infections and the conversion of dietary fibres into essential fatty acids (Sherwood et al, 2013).
Established within two years after birth, the delicate configuration of the human gut microbiota is prone to fluctuations due to factors such as age, diet, and chronic health conditions (Quigley, 2013) and any drastic fluctuation in the gut microbiome, further exerts a definite influence on the host health leading to various metabolic disorders and diseases (Thursby and Juge, 2017).
When it comes to getting and staying healthy, one of the simplest things you can do is just not eat. Surprisingly, fasting (avoiding all food and caloric beverages for a period of time) can bring with it a whole host of health benefits. Fasting can be categorized into intermittent fasting and periodic fasting. Intermittent fasting typically is fasting for a shorter period of time, such as a 14 or 24 hour fast. Longer periods of fasting (typically longer than 3 days) are categorized as periodic fasting. Research has shown that fasting can improve insulin sensitivity, reduce blood pressure, reduce body fat, decrease cholesterol levels, and reduce inflammation.
Although most wouldn’t think to skip breakfast before a big day, intermittent fasting can improve cognitive abilities. In rodent models, intermittent fasting has shown increases in learning, memory, sensory, and motor function. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a protein that increases neuroplasticity, neurogenesis, and the resistance to injury of neurons. And as you might expect, fasting directly increases the levels of BDNF in your brain. Intermittent fasting could be a huge asset to anyone looking to improve their mental performance at school or work.
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Sauna use has been commonplace in Scandinavian countries for
hundreds of years. In other parts of the world sauna use is gaining popularity
due to the reported health benefits. Not only can sauna use improve and protect
the health of your heart, but it has also been linked to the excretion of heavy
metals, protection of healthy cells, and an increase in immune function. Given
all these benefits it’s not surprising that more people are finding themselves
sweating in either a traditional dry sauna or an infrared sauna.
Lithium, well known for
its extensive use as ‘lithium batteries’ in mobile phones, laptops, electric
cars, and solar power packs, is little known as an essential biological entity.
The trace element plays an
active role in the neurophysiology, oxidative metabolism, and cellular signal
The biological use of
lithium dates to the 14th century ‘Lithium Water Spas’, where the
affluent had a mood enhancing bath. The more recent ‘Lithia Springs’, in
Georgia, is worth a mention. The medical use of lithium as ‘salts of lithium’ has
been prevalent since the early 19th century for the treatment of
gout, depression, sleep, mood, and manic disorders.
The biological role of zinc runs deep into realms of the genes through the cellular growth, maintenance, and functions. Hence, zinc deficiency leads to various serious health complications.
Oysters, red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, whole grains, cereals, and dairy products are good sources of zinc (https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/). Since, Phytic acid present in legumes and whole grains reduces the cellular absorption of zinc by binding to them, soaking them in water for several hours before cooking or sprouting them before consumption is highly beneficial (Sandstrom, 1997).
Wheat germ oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, almonds, peanuts, spinach, pumpkin, asparagus, mango, and avocado are abundant sources of Vitamin E. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for vitamin E for those older than fourteen years of age is 15 mg a day equivalent to 22 international units. The RDA holds good for men and women, including those in their pregnancy. A daily dose of 19 mg equivalent to 28 international units is the RDA for lactating mothers.
Curcumin is the prime constituent of turmeric, a food additive (E100) derived from the rhizome of the herb Curcuma longa. It is a natural polyphenol.
The therapeutic efficacy of curcumin has been validated on various human diseases and there have been substantial research/ clinical trials on the pharmacological activity of curcumin in the treatment of diseases such as arthritis, pathogenic infections, colon cancer, psychiatric disorders, and hormonal dysfunction.
Every human body has unique and complicated needs. Our body structure and requirements are different from one another in many aspects. Good nutrition is associated with good health and also with the treatment and prevention of many health conditions. Consuming the required number of vitamins is a significant part of our nutritional needs. So, when it comes to vitamins, we all need them to some extent. While there are 13 vitamins in total, this article will particularly discuss the needs, benefits, and deficiency effects of vitamin B.
Numerous health benefits are associated with significant consumption of vitamin A. They are necessary for various things in your body, which includes healthy vision, strong immunity, and proper growth. Some other benefits of maintaining the ideal amount of vitamin A are listed below.
Diet is only one aspect of human health. Clean water, lots of it, for drinking and bathing, is essential. Regular activity and movement, whether exercise or work, is necessary and natural for sustaining health. Humans are social and need interaction with people. Getting enough sleep (and rest), enough light (but not too much), continuing to challenge the mind, overcoming problems from the past, having fun, feeling connected with Nature or God, finding meaning and purpose all contribute to the big picture of human health.