|IRISH RUGBY MEMBERS
Exercise (Step #6)
Did you guys see how a new trial showed that the studly, elite rugby players on the national Irish team displayed awesome guts (and abs) while they were in training? I love this topic because not only does it raise many questions but it may answer what we inherently know/suspect about the interweaved relationship between good health and lifestyles/diet/exercise AND GUT HEALTH.
Exercise is Step #6 of the 7 Steps for optimal gut health and super bionic fiber combo (Versions B and A). I used to train and do 1/2 marathons and triathlons, and got very tired of defending my beloved chronic cardio to overweight HIIT purists. No joke. Hard to defend what is obviously ancestral. Our ancestors moved. A lot. They foraged and fought — they fed their young and fortified their dwellings. They moved consistently often for hours. Genetically some (like apoE4) need to move much more than others perhaps. True also for the Pima Indians who have ancestral-type genetics but live in a discordant, modern, carb-heavy, sedentary ecology. See here, here and here.
New Elite Irish National Rugby Team Player Study:
Exercise and associated dietary extremes impact on gut microbial diversity (free PDF)
Clarke et al. Gut. 2014 Jun 9.
According to the study, “The results provide evidence for a beneficial impact of exercise on gut microbiota diversity but also indicate that the relationship is complex and is related to accompanying dietary extremes.”
Editorial by Georgina Hold: The gut microbiota, dietary extremes and exercise
Exercise and higher dietary protein related to better guts and statistically related to diversity (=better gut) and lower inflammatory biomarkers compared with controls. Very well done IMHO, though INFINITE confounders lol.
Many factors raise diversity which the researchers failed to address:
(1) exposure to dirt/soil organisms on the rugby fields (dirt can make you happier)
(2) contact with diverse other players’ skin, spit, sweat, whatever is like how dogs and their owners share microbiota
(3) being outdoors and contact with environmental microorganisms (lower disease and atopy)
(4) genetic variants (selective for warrior genes, elite athleticism, super guts, lower inflammation, etc)
Here’s a synopsis from the researchers:
What is already known about this subject?
▸ An altered gut microbiota composition has
been associated with a number of diseases and
syndromes, including obesity.
▸ We and others have shown the primacy of diet
in influencing the microbiota in obesity.
▸ Loss of gut microbiota diversity has been linked
to an increasing number of conditions such as
autism, GI diseases and obesity associated
▸ Akkermansia muciniphilla abundance has been
shown to inversely correlate with obesity and
associated metabolic disorders.
What are the new findings?
▸ This is the first report that exercise increases
gut microbial diversity in humans.
▸ Protein consumption positively correlates with
microbial diversity (correlation coefficients
▸ The athletes in the low body mass index (BMI)
group had significantly higher proportions of
the genus Akkermansia levels compared with
the high BMI group.
How might it impact on clinical practice in
the foreseeable future?
▸ Our findings indicate that exercise is another
important factor in the relationship between
the microbiota, host immunity and host
metabolism, with diet playing an important
role. Further, intervention-based studies to
tease apart this relationship will be important
and provide further insights into optimal
therapies to influence the gut microbiota and
its relationship with health and disease
|New Zealand Rugby Team
Spectacular Abs, Spectacular Gut Microbiota Diversity
The elite athletes had way more butyrate producers (Rumino, Clostridia, etc) and Akkermansia muciniphila compared with both high BMI and low BMI controls. These species found in higher abundance in the healthy athletes are also the same found in our lean ancestral core that I discussed earlier and how to achieve: Sorry. Resistant Starch is Unlikely to Miraculously Cause Weight Loss and Body Fat Loss
A. muciniphila is very unique making up 3-5% of fecal microbiota in healthy folks. IT LOWERS BODY FAT. The mechanisms are unknown but if A. muciniphila are fed to rodents, they lose body fat. If they are fed their favorite foods (oligofructose) then A. muciniphila populations are restored and weight loss in rodent models ensues. It is also associated with elevated endocanabinnoid concentrations and maintains healthy blood glucoses (maybe this is why pot causes lower glucose… thus ‘munchies’?).
Unlike Resistant Starch, Oligofructose and Inulin-like Fructans Cause Miraculous Body Fat Loss and Weight Loss
Yes. Many fibers induce fat loss, but resistant starch is not one imho.
Inulin and oligofructose often are. Humans and rodent model research.
It works for me. It’s half of Version B of my super bionic fiber formula. Inulin and oligos are naturally found abundantly in onions, leeks (French stay skinny on leek soup), asparagus, sunchokes, etc. It’s sweet tasting with little energy/calories for us but plentiful for the intestinal flora.
I believe it’s body fat reducing characteristics are related to A. muciniphila and many of our co-evolved ancestral core microbiota which have co-adapted to eating the diverse spectrum of plant polysaccharides on Earth that we feed them (oligos, inulin, xylan, arabinoxylan, lignin, arabinogalactan, beta-glucan, hemicelluloses, pectin, glucomannan, etc). They have diversified above and beyond raw resistant starch. You don’t need a lot. Oligofructose and inulin-like fructans are the second most abundant ‘fiber’ on the planet, found in over 36,000 plants in our global ecosystem in roots, tubers, legumes, leaves, grains, agave, cacti, and stems. Tiny amounts go a LOOOOONG way.
In humans, A. muciniphila is ‘missing’ in the gut fingerprint of obesity, T2 diabetes and IBD, to name just a few post-industrial conditions. When I look at a gut profile, what I see matches the studies; in obese/weight-challenged, A muciniphila is low. In lean, abundant.
“In the article that appeared on 13 May in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the research team concluded that the bacteria are less frequent in mice with induced obesity and with type 2 (adult-onset) diabetes. Furthermore, administering rather indigestible fibres such as oligofructose, known for its advantageous effect on intestinal biota, resulted in a recovery of the Akkermansia population in mice. The presence of the bacteria strengthens the intestinal barrier and is also inversely correlated with weight increase (fat storage), inflammation reactions in fatty tissues and insulin resistance.
To check that, the researchers administered Akkermansia bacteria to ordinary mice on various diets. With a normal diet, no effect was noticed but in mice that became overweight as a result of a high-fat diet, the Akkermansia bacteria caused a reduction in fat development and associated metabolic defects, without affecting food intake. After the administration of Akkermansia bacteria, there was an increase in endocannabinoid levels, a substance that ensures blood glucose remains at the correct level. In addition, the intestinal barrier function was strengthened. Only intact, living bacteria produced these results; the researchers noticed that bacteria that had been heated beforehand had no effect.” Sciencedaily
Back to Healthy, Elite Rugby Players With Spectacular Guts
The athletes were in training. They exercised, built lean muscle mass (biomarker: CK), burned fat, and consumed way more fiber (conventional) 39 g/day v 20-something g/day by controls. They ate vastly higher volumes of food in general (exceeding 4400 kcal/day) because they ate more starches/carbs + vegetables/fruit + MEAT.
They ate way way way more protein including whey protein from powders (sulfur source) than controls (median 2.4 g/kg v. 1.1-1.6 g/day in controls) and protein intake was found to be directly related to healthier guts/diversity. I think dietary protein is awesome as long as we achieve enough fiber and exercise/oxygenation/lymph-circulation… Dietary protein is aligned to our carnivorous guts and ancestral history. Given however after mass microbial extinctions in our guts that are unparalleled in the history of mammals, we do not digest as well as our ancient predecessors. Suboptimal gut health is marked by poor gastric acid secretion (hence GERD/heartburn!), low elastase and other pancreatic enzyme secretion, loss of gall bladder function/stones, poor fecal pH, lack of gut microbial fermentation and small intestinal permeability/inflammation. We are missing our ancestral core bacteria, yeasts and wild spirochetes that keep us healthy and digestion smooth and unfettered.
Dietary protein consumption also correlated with muscle mass (CK). As you’re probably aware muscle is a good biomarker for longevity (sarcopenia, less longevity — please see Jamie Scott’s AHS14 Presentation).
I like how this study by Clarke and his University College Cork colleagues put a framework to muscle, diet, exercise and gut health here. These guys were in intense conditioning for their sport… no junk or ‘snacks’ compared with controls. Diet was apparently clean and dialed for optimal glycolytics, POWER SPRINTS and chronic cardio. Only water polo players might give them a run for their money lol.
“The athletes are an exceptional group in terms of their dietary intake, fitness/endurance and now we know, in relation to their gut microbiota! This high diversity is particularly linked with exercise and protein consumption and suggests that eating specific proteins and/or exercise can provide a means of increasing microbial diversity in the gut.
This is the first report that exercise increases microbial diversity in humans. While we and others have previously shown that diet influences microbial diversity, we can now report that protein consumption, in particular, positively correlates with microbial diversity.” Source
Other related news:
How exercise may affect gut hormones, weight loss