Free shipping on all orders over $125*
Due to rising temperatures, orders ship Monday-Thursday only.
Synbiotic Blend of 10 Beneficial Strains, Developed by Board-Certified Gastroenterologist

microbiome

Brown and white dog eating out of a dog bowl. Text says "Pet Food Safety: For your two- and four-legged family members"

Pet Food Safety

Can Fido’s Food Make Your Gut Sick? Yes!

If we’re completely honest, the bar for cleanliness in most homes takes a big hit when we live with pets (and kids, but that’s another story for another day).

We give them cool names and treat them like members of our family (actually like royalty), yet the familiarity has made us two-legged creatures all too lax when it comes to protecting our health from gut-sickening bugs like E. coli and Salmonella.

Unfortunately, you’re exposing your body to harmful gut bugs merely by the way you handle your pet’s food, according to a recent study published in PLOS One.

 

BAD Pet Parents!

Researchers at North Carolina State University recognized the need to examine the unhygienic feeding of pets based on their own practices which were haphazard and disregarded FDA safety recommendations.

For the first part of their study, scientists polled 417 dog parents about their pet food handling preparation, and the results were scary based on the numbers:

  • Less than 5 percent of pet parents were aware of FDA guidelines for handling pet food.
  • Not only did a third prepare their pet’s food in the same places they made their own meals, roughly the same number washed their hands afterward.
  • Some 43 percent of pet parents stored dog food 5 feet or less from where they made their meals.

Scientists followed up with 50 owners (68 dogs) for a bacterial analysis of food bowls, based on two groups following FDA guidelines for cleanliness, food handling and a third control group following no extra steps at all for eight days.

Pet parents in both groups who followed FDA suggestions decreased the amount of bacterial contamination in food bowls by at least 90 percent. On the other side, bacteria increased in bowls between tests among pet parents who followed no restrictions.

 

Keeping It Clean!

If those numbers don’t concern you, this one should: Among the families surveyed, 36 percent had kids or members who were immune-compromised leaving both groups very vulnerable to illness from bad bacteria.

What’s more, the risk of exposure to harmful bacteria like E. coli isn’t confined to the poor handling of commercial pet foods. While the primary focus of this study was on feeding dogs dry and canned foods, about 4 percent of pet owners prepared cooked foods or raw commercial foods for their pets which could be contaminated by bad bacteria (Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes).

(If you do feed your pets raw foods of any kind, we urge you to check out this FDA fact sheet listing stringent guidelines for preventing foodborne bugs from harming you and your family.)

All that said, the good news here is that many of the very same recommendations we’ve shared with you often during the coronavirus pandemic for protecting your immune system also apply to handling your pets’ meals and dishes, like thorough hand-washing.

One extra step you can take to protect your immune health from gut-sickening bugs like E. coli is an easy one: Taking a probiotic with multiple strains of beneficial, medically proven bacteria from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus families, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

 

Resources

PLOS One

CNN

Prevention

Mayo Clinic

FDA

Cute vector graphic of a smiling gut. Large intestine shapes the head of character with a smiling face in the center. Text reads "Prebiotics 101: Why prebiotics are important

Prebiotics 101

Prebiotics: Food For Your Gut and More

We talk so much about the benefits of probiotics that it’s worth reminding you how important prebiotics — the unsung heroes of good gut health — really are.

Made of non-digestible plant fibers and carbohydrates, prebiotics are known best for being the food that feeds the good bacteria in your gut.

But that’s not all they do…

We’ve shared previous reports about the importance of prebiotics in protecting your bones, getting a good night’s sleep and even fighting cancer.

Prebiotics may do even more good behind the scenes than we ever imagined, thanks to an international research team who recently developed a non-invasive diagnostic imaging tool using bioluminescence, a chemical reaction that produces light inside the body.

 

See What They Found!

That research team, led by scientists at the University of Missouri, tested the tool (an easy-to-swallow capsule) that measures levels of bile salt hydrolase, a naturally occurring enzyme in the gut, in fecal samples from mice and humans.

This is critical because higher bile salt hydrolase levels have been shown to be indicators of excellent gut health and low levels of inflammation, according to previous studies.

The good news: “We show for the first time that certain types of prebiotics alone are capable of increasing bile salt hydrolase activity of the gut microbiome,” says Dr. Elena Goun, an associate professor at the University of Missouri.

Among the prebiotics monitored with this new tool, fructooligosaccharides (FOS) was responsible for noticeable increases in Bifidobacterium species and bile salt hydrolase levels in mice compared to inulin, another prebiotic derived from chicory root and other sources.

FOS are chains of plant sugars derived from whole foods like bananas, blue agave, garlic, Jerusalem artichokes and asparagus, and you don’t need to consume a lot of it to make a gut healthy difference.

Thanks to FOS, you can make a prebiotic difference and maintain the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut by taking a prebiotic-probiotic combo with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

 

References

Nebraska Medicine

Science Advances

University of Missouri

Healthline

Senior african american woman smiling and looking up and away from camera. Overlaid text on image reads "The Aging Gut 101: Healthy Aging, Healthy Gut

The Aging Gut 101

The Aging Gut 101: Healthy Aging, Healthy Gut

“Does my gut age just like the rest of me?”

We get this question a lot, especially from older folks who are starting to understand the connection between the gut and their health in ways that matter directly to them, like maintaining their bones and preserving their cognitive skills.

The simple answer: The composition of bacteria in your gut evolves with time just like your body. Your microbiome develops rapidly from infancy to age 3, stabilizes through middle age, then changes rapidly later in life, according to the National Institute on Aging.

Those changes can be a good thing. In fact, the more your gut bacteria evolves as you age, the better your overall health may be, based on recent research appearing in Nature Metabolism.

Your Evolving Gut

This study compared a wealth of data on human health along with gut microbiome genetic sequencing data on more than 9,000 patients ranging from ages 18-101.

However, the real focus of the research team (led by scientists at the Institute for Systems Biology) was a subset of more than 900 older patients (ages 78-98) to better understand the makeup of their microbiomes and how they matched up with their overall health.

To the good, older adults whose microbiomes kept evolving enjoyed better overall health, as evidenced by lower levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, higher vitamin D levels and more beneficial blood metabolites produced by the gut (including one that reduced inflammation and extended lives in previous animal studies).

Not only did those with more unique microbiomes feel better, they experienced greater overall mobility and could walk faster than their peers whose gut health didn’t change as much with age.

To the bad, patients with less diverse microbiomes took more medications and were nearly twice as likely to die during the course of the study.

Scientists also learned that microbiome uniqueness was more prevalent among women, which may go a long way toward explaining why women often outlive men…

Your Diet Matters

So, what drives microbial evolution and longevity among seniors? The healthiest patients with the most dramatic shifts in their microbiomes experienced steep drops in Bacteroides, a species commonly found in people who eat more processed foods and far less fiber.

When patients eat less fiber, the Bacteroides in their guts have little to eat which can trigger an immune response leading to chronic inflammation and an array of age-related conditions from arthritis to heart disease.

These results certainly mirror previous articles we’ve shared about the many health benefits of dietary fiber, especially if you want to maintain a resilient, healthy gut microbiome that evolves as you age.

How much fiber your body needs every day to maintain optimal health depends on your gender — men need a bit more (31-38 grams) than women (21-25 grams) — and the quality of your diet.

Are You Taking A Probiotic?

If you’re having challenges getting enough fiber, taking a daily probiotic formulated with proven strains of beneficial bacteria and a prebiotic can do a lot of good.

Taking a probiotic with a prebiotic may also reduce low-grade inflammation. This was the key finding in a recent review of studies appearing in Nutrients.

One of the real benefits of taking a probiotic comes from the production of butyrate (short-chain fatty acids created when your gut digests soluble fiber) that reduces chronic low-grade inflammation in your gut.

If you’ve been looking for a good probiotic, find one with multiple strains of beneficial and proven bacteria from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus families plus a prebiotic that feeds the good guys in your gut, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

Resources

National Institute on Aging

Nature Metabolism

New York Times

Gut Microbiota For Health

Nutrients

Nutraingredients Asia

Photo of a girl's face with acne. Text reads :Acne & Probiotics

Probiotics May Relieve Acne Outbreaks

Acne and Probiotics

No matter how common it is, acne can be a very touchy and painful subject for people of all ages.

Although acne often arises during the teenage years of raging hormones, it can happen at any stage of life, as we’ve seen with the dramatic rise in maskne during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Medical experts estimate 80 percent of us will experience at least one form of acne by age 30, while others never develop it until they reach adulthood.

While hormones typically drive acne, other variables like clothing, menstrual cycles, high humidity, oily or greasy personal care products and some medications can trigger or worsen acne breakouts.

Depending on the severity of acne, treatments range from non-prescription creams and washes applied topically, all the way to tetracycline antibiotics (minocycline and doxycycline) that can disrupt the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut.

Let’s take a quick look at some findings that link the health of your gut microbiome to your skin.

 

The Gut-Skin Connection In Action

Medical science appears to be catching on to the gut-skin connection based on the growing number of studies comparing acne problems to common gut health issues. For example:

  • Patients suffering from acne vulgaris (a condition in which hair follicles are blocked by dead skin cells, oil and bacteria) and eczema (a condition that makes your skin itchy and red) are experiencing alarming decreases in beneficial bacteria.
  • The prevalence of antibiotic resistance among patients that makes these drugs far less effective over time is a very real problem.
  • Eating a Western diet full of carbs, fiber-poor processed foods and sugar may harm your gut and your skin.
  • The incidence of irritable bowel syndrome was found to be significantly more common among patients suffering from acne vulgaris, according to the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.

These are just a few of the breadcrumbs that clearly point in the direction of a real gut-skin link, but what about a solution that’s safe for your skin and microbiome?

 

Probiotics To The Rescue

Extensive reports from Microorganisms, Frontiers in Microbiology, Experimental Dermatology and the Journal of Clinical Medicine point to evidence that treating skin conditions like acne with oral probiotics can be effective.

The common link: The oral probiotics tested successfully in these studies were formulated with strains from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families, including some of the proven strains contained in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic and EndoMune Junior Advanced Chewable Probiotic.

We recognize that there’s much work still to be done to build a bigger base of knowledge to really understand the hows and whys, but the evidence seems clear to us that taking a probiotic with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria like EndoMune can be good for your gut and your skin.

 

Resources

Vector graphic of a large intestine next to a magnifying glass hovering a vector image of the coronavirus molecular structure. Text reads "Long Covid: Gut bacteria (Im)balances May Affect Your Risk

The Connection Between Gut Health and Long Covid

Long COVID: Gut Bacteria (Im)Balances May Affect Your Risks

Although most patients who contract the coronavirus recover within weeks, some COVID symptoms persist for some people long after an initial bout with the disease.

A study appearing late last year in Nature Communications estimates about 7 percent of patients infected with COVID-19 experienced at least one Long COVID symptom six months later.

Common symptoms of Long COVID include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Joint and chest pain
  • Cognitive challenges
  • Fatigue and brain fog
  • Insomnia

As time goes on, the more modern medical science is learning how the gut plays an increasingly important role in protecting or harming your health.

So far, we’re seen how some key variables come into play with COVID-19 in relation to your microbiome, like how you manage your diet and stress levels which help you maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria.

Failing to protect a healthy balance of bacteria in your gut may also increase your risks of developing Long COVID many months after your initial run-in with the coronavirus, according to a recent report in the medical journal, Gut.

Gut Dysbiosis And Long COVID

A group of Chinese researchers examined the gut health of 106 COVID patients hospitalized over a six-month period in 2020 to 68 healthy patients by using stool samples to monitor any links to Long COVID.

More than three-quarters of patients participating in the study reported symptoms of Long COVID, with fatigue, brain fog, hair loss, anxiety and sleep problems among the most common challenges at the six-month mark.

Yet, despite no significant differences in common risk factors (age, pre-existing conditions or the use of antibiotics), a majority who suffered from Long COVID symptoms a half-year later experienced gut dysbiosis, meaning they had a less diverse mix of gut bacteria.

In fact, the overall makeup of gut bacteria among patients with Long COVID included 81 harmful species. For example, some harmful species from the Streptococcus and Clostridium families were linked to persistent respiratory problems.

Overall, the gut microbiomes of sick patients who didn’t develop Long COVID were similar to those who never contracted COVID at all.

What You Can Do

For the foreseeable future, Long COVID is here to stay and scientists are searching for answers. However, there are steps you can take to protect and strengthen your immune health and make that run-in with COVID a shorter, more uneventful one if it happens.

We already know that the lack of balance in the gut microbiome for COVID patients is a real problem and how these imbalances can show up in your blood. What’s more, just like the previous study, the depletion of key bacterial species associated with boosting immunity really matters.

For starters, cleaning up your diet (cutting out the sugar), starting some form of daily movement and working on a better sleep schedule can do a lot of good.

One more important thing you can do to give your immune system a direct boost: Take a probiotic formulated with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic, uniquely fortified with 10 strains of beneficial bacteria from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus families.

 

Resources

BMJ

Gut

Mayo Clinic

Bloomberg

Inverse

Medical News Today

Nature Communications

Illustrated graphic of a head next to a brain, digestive system, and supplements. Text reads "Mild Cognitive Impairment: Your Gut, Your Brain and Probiotics"

The Microbiome’s Effect On Mild Cognitive Impairment

Mild Cognitive Impairment: Your Gut, Your Brain and Probiotics

Given our existing knowledge of the gut-brain axis — the connection that links your intestines, emotions, and brain — it was only time before modern science would examine how the microbiome and human mind work together in other ways.

Lately, a growing number of researchers are studying the effect of the microbiome on mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a stage between the typical cognitive decline due to normal aging and dementia.

Nearly a fifth of people age 60 or older live with MCI, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Generally, the cognitive shifts associated with MCI are noticeable, but don’t limit a patient’s ability to do daily tasks.

Fortunately, MCI doesn’t always lead to Alzheimer’s and cognitive changes may improve in time and, occasionally, it can be misdiagnosed due to a drug side effect.

Based on what we’ve learned from a pair of recent studies, the health of the human gut may provide some clues about MCI and a possible treatment with the help of probiotics.

 

The Bad News: Gut Bacteria Imbalances

One of the first signs of trouble with gut health are imbalances in the microbiome. Based on a comparative analysis of fecal samples, a group of Chinese researchers spotted noticeable differences in gut bacteria between healthy patients and those with MCI in a study appearing in the Journal of Immunology Research.

On the plus side, MCI patients had significantly more of some strains from the Staphylococcus genus than the healthy controls. That may be problematic, given that another Staphylococcus strain has been linked to neurodegeneration, a deterioration of neuronal structures leading to cognitive problems and dementia.

On the minus side, those with MCI had reduced levels of Bacteroides strains, in line with previous research connecting them to Alzheimer’s. In fact, Chinese scientists recommended that these Bacteroides strains could be used as potential microbiome markers for MCI or Alzheimer’s.

 

The Good News: Probiotics

Fortunately, there may be a silver lining to all of this bad gut bacteria news with the help of a probiotic.

Japanese researchers compared the effect of a probiotic formulated with a proprietary strain of Bifidobacterium breve to a placebo on 80 healthy older MCI patients in a Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease report.

(Bifidobacterium breve is one of the 10 strains of beneficial bacteria contained in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.)

After both MCI groups took a probiotic or placebo for 16 weeks, researchers measured cognitive functions with a battery of standard tests.

No surprise, patients who took a probiotic achieved significantly higher scores in relation to immediate memory, visuospatial functioning (tasks like buttoning a shirt, assembling furniture or making a bed), and delayed memory.

These studies are merely the beginning of many as science looks to stem the tide of memory issues that surface with MCI and measure how well non-drug therapies like probiotics will perform in the real world.

One thing is certain: Taking a daily probiotic, especially a multi-species product like EndoMune supports your gut-brain axis, improves your mood, alleviates stress and helps you get the restful sleep your body needs naturally, safely, and without a drug.

 

References

Alzheimer’s Association

Journal of Immunology Research

NutraIngredients USA

Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease

Medical News Today

Photograph of infant holding mother's thumb. Text reads "Protect Your Baby's Gut Health from Allergies

The Link Between Childhood Allergies And Gut Health

Protect Your Baby’s Gut Health From Allergies

Building great gut health starts with a solid foundation. For a new mom, that’s making gut-smart choices like breastfeeding her new baby for as long as she can and doing her best to avoid a c-section birth.

Doing those two things can go a long way toward developing a diverse, balanced microbiome that protects your child from persistent health issues like allergies as he/she grows up.

Unfortunately, c-section rates remain high for new moms (even for those first-time moms with low-risk births) and breastfeeding numbers drop sharply after 6 months, according to numbers collected by the CDC.

So, we shouldn’t be surprised that childhood allergies are also on the rise due to a lack of diversity in gut bacteria, according to a pair of reports.

 

Gut Bacteria Imbalances

The findings of the two studies, appearing recently in Nature Communications and Pediatric Allergy and Immunology, mirrored each other in one important way: The balance of bacteria determined a child’s susceptibility to food or respiratory allergies.

For example, Italian researchers in the Nature study identified specific microbial signatures that stood out due to their higher inflammatory potential (thanks to an uptick in the production of pro-inflammatory molecules) and depleted levels of beneficial bacteria in fecal samples taken from allergic kids compared to healthy ones.

Overall, less than a third of the children with food allergies developed a healthy immunity to problematic foods like cow’s milk, eggs, nuts, or fruit by the end of a three-year monitoring period.

These same challenges with the lack of microbial diversity were very evident in the Pediatric Allergy and Immunology study over an extended five-year time-frame too.

Based on stool samples taken from children ages 3-5, patients with allergies had far less diverse microbiomes than healthy kids, especially among young patients sensitive to peanuts and milk.

 

A Probiotic Solution

Although there were no mentions in either study about breastfeeding or natural childbirth, based on previous reports we’ve shared, we know both have a positive impact on reducing your child’s chances of food or respiratory allergies.

Not to mention, feeding your baby formula exclusively has been found to increase the incidence of respiratory problems and asthma significantly.

Unfortunately, more than a few new moms may not have the option of having natural childbirth or breastfeeding, so what do you do?

You may want to consider giving your baby a multi-species probiotic like EndoMune Junior Advanced Powder that contains four basic building blocks of beneficial bacteria from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus families, along with a prebiotic (FOS) that feeds the good guys in her/his developing gut.

But, before starting your baby on EndoMune Junior in its powdered form or its Chewable berry-flavored tablet, please check in with your pediatrician.

 

Resources

Pediatric Allergy Immunology

Medscape

Nature Communications

Microbiome Post.com

Women scratching irritated neck. TEXT: The Gut's Connection To Psoriasis

The Gut’s Connection To Psoriasis

The Gut’s Connection To Psoriasis

We’re getting more evidence by the day about the harmful effects of the Western diet, a nutrient-poor mix of highly processed foods full of fats, refined grains and sugars, and its relation to the gut.

It doesn’t take much to create unhealthy imbalances in the gut that lead to newly discovered problems, as researchers from the University of California Davis have recently discovered.

The reduction of microbial diversity and the loss of beneficial bacteria, better known as the dysbiosis of the human gut, is so harmful that it can leave you vulnerable to inflammatory skin conditions like psoriasis and more serious related problems such as psoriatic arthritis.

As many as 30 percent of patients who have psoriasis also suffer from psoriatic arthritis, a condition that causes painful, swollen joints. (This could be the first or only symptom of psoriasis.)

 

How Processed Foods Affect Psoriasis

To study the harm poor diets can do to the gut, scientists worked with mice, starting off by feeding them a Western diet for six weeks then injecting them with Interleukin-23 (IL-23), a chemical that drives inflammation, to induce a response that mimics psoriasis.

After that first six-week period, the mice were divided randomly into two groups, with half of them maintaining a Western diet while the rest eating a more balanced diet for an additional four weeks.

No surprise, mice that were fed a Western diet for the entire 10 weeks experienced skin and joint inflammation which wasn’t a surprise. In fact, test animals that were switched to a balanced diet had fewer skin problems and reduced ear thickness.

“It was quite surprising that a simple diet modification of less sugar and fat may have significant effects on psoriasis,” said Zhenrui Shi, a visiting assistant researcher in the University of California Davis’ department of dermatology and lead author on the study.

But that’s only part of the solution…

We’ve shared a lot of research with you recently about the benefits of maintaining a healthy gut to treat common skin conditions like acne and prevent bone loss by taking a probiotic with beneficial bacteria.

Any probiotic you take to protect your gut should contain multiple strains of beneficial bacteria to make a healthy difference, like the 10 proven strains from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families found in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

EndoMune also features a prebiotic (FOS) made of digestible plant fibers and carbohydrates that do important work behind the scenes to feed the bacteria in your gut and stimulate their growth.

 

References

Journal of Investigative Dermatology

UC Davis Health

Mayo Clinic

Science Direct

sterile white couch in an all white room

Your House Paint May Contain Gut-Harming Antimicrobials

I’ve talked about all of the trouble associated antibacterial products (preventing the development of bacteria) and antimicrobial products (preventing the spread of fungi, viruses and bacteria) too many times to count on my blog.

Over-sterilizing your life creates lots of problems for your gut microbiome. And, this doesn’t include exposures to all sorts of things under our very noses — from yoga mats to common personal care products like toothpaste — that contain gut bacteria-robbing chemicals.

Could the latex paint that lines the walls of your home be another problem hiding in plain sight?

Antimicrobial latex paints put to the test

Researchers at Northwestern University and the University of Chicago tested the effect of three kinds of antimicrobial, synthetic latex paints (formulated to improve indoor air quality) on bacteria in a study featured in the journal, Indoor Air.

To reproduce the typical home environment, scientists painted a group of 2×2-inch squares of drywall twice (with a day in between applications for drying), added tiny drops of water and placed them in sealed glass jars.

Then, some of the samples were exposed to five forms of bacteria taken from gym facilities that are commonly found in homes.

Within a day, all but one of the bacterial species — the spore-forming Bacillus timonensis — had died. The concern: Most bacteria die on dry, cold surfaces, but why not this one?

Spreading bacteria where it shouldn’t be

When bacteria are attacked with antimicrobial chemicals, they will mount a defense, says lead researcher Erica Hartmann. “Bacillus is typically innocuous, but by attacking it, you might prompt it to develop more antibiotic resistance.”

Spore-forming bacteria like Bacillus timonensis protect themselves on painted surfaces by lying dormant for a time, and resisting harsh conditions until they reactivate.

By now, you’re probably wondering why paint companies don’t test their antimicrobial products on common forms of bacteria. That was the gist of the test, Hartman says.

All too often, companies test their products on how E. coli — considered by some to be the “lab rat” of the microbial world — and Staphylococcus survive, yet ignore other microbes people encounter every day.

“We should be judicious in our use of antimicrobial products to make sure that we’re not exposing the more harmless bacteria to something that could make them harmful,” Hartmann says.

Protecting your immune health

The presence of antimicrobial cleaners and paints in our lives can create a “too clean for our own good” environment that hurts our health in many ways.

Exposure to antibacterial and antimicrobial products, even those seemingly as benign as paint, can harm us by eroding the delicate balance of bacteria in our gut.

Maintaining a healthy balance of gut bacteria helps our body do critical things like fortifying our immune systems and creating nearly all of the serotonin our bodies need.

Taking a good probiotic, ideally with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic, is an easy way to protect your overall health and your gut from antibacterial products that may hiding on your walls, countertops and elsewhere.

little girl playing with a puppy

A Dog’s Gut Health May Look Like Yours

How many of you think of your pets as if they were members of your own family? You’d probably have a hard time finding anyone who doesn’t feel that way about their four-legged family members, especially dogs.

Did you know a dog’s gut health has developed very similarly to ours, and good gut health may be beneficial to dogs and their human masters?

Not only did researchers at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory discover great parallels in the gut health and microbial composition of 64 retrievers and beagles, they concluded our gut health could be more similar to dogs, according to their study published in the open access journal Microbiome.

The latter finding is an interesting one, given that pigs and mice are used commonly in gut health research, which led scientists to study how the gut health and diversity of lean and overweight dogs changed when fed low carb/high protein diets.

Just like their overweight masters, the microbiomes of heavier dogs changed significantly when fed high protein/low carb food, but not those of leaner dogs (a sign that thinner canines had healthier, more resilient gut microbiomes).

“These findings suggest that dogs could be a better model for nutrition studies than pigs or mice and we could potentially use data from dogs to study the impact of diet on gut microbiota on humans, and humans could be a good model to study the nutrition of dogs,” says Dr. Luis Pedro Coehlo, as told to BioMed Central.

The hygiene hypothesis connection

You may be wondering how the microbiomes of dogs and their masters became so interconnected. That’s where the hygiene hypothesis may come into play due to Western cultures living in more sterile environments that are too clean for our good.

On the other paw, dogs only get soapy when they’ve been dirty (and probably bad) and they tend to scratch, sniff and lick spots on their bodies and those of fellow canines that most of us would never do.

Dogs may not be the only animals that provide microbial protection to humans either. Based on a 2016 study from the New England Journal of Medicine, Amish children raised around farm animals were up to six times less likely to experience asthma.

What can you do to protect the microbiomes of your family if you don’t live on or near a farm and caring for a pet just isn’t realistic?

Taking a probiotic, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic and EndoMune Junior Probiotic for kids, containing multiple strains of beneficial bacteria can make a healthy difference in your gut health profile even if Fido isn’t available to help.

(Anecdotally, my wife and I have given our dogs EndoMune for seven years with no problems. All of them have a healthy GI tract and have experienced no gas, bloating or diarrhea during that time.)

Scroll to Top