research round-up

Sports Nutrition
& the microbiome

While the need for more research around the active lifestyle/gut connection is apparent, there have been a number studies in recent years that address the topic. We’re hopeful the interest in probiotics, gut health, and the effects on multiple areas of human health means this sampling of recent studies is a beacon of what’s to come. 

A Microbiome-Dependent Neuronal Pathway Regulates the Motivation for Exercise in Mice

This was an in vivo study that showed a neuronal link between the gut and the striatum, demonstrating their activity is enhanced by exercise. The impact of the exercise was dependent on the intestinal metabolites produced by the microbiota.

The Human Gut Microbiome of Athletes: Metagenomic and Metabolic Insights

An analysis of 418 publicly metagenomic datasets obtained from fecal samples of healthy athletes and healthy sedentary adults. Analysis showed that physical activity and related lifestyle can be associated with modulating the gut microbiota composition.

The Connection Between Physical Exercise and Gut Microbiota: Implications for Completive Sports Athletes

This study was a review on the effects of physical activity on gut microbiota and whether physical exercise of variable work intensity reflects changes in intestinal health. Results found that regular physical activity may influence changes in the microbiota composition with benefits of immune protection and metabolic advantages. On the flip side, irregular and exhausting training may contribute to dysbiosis in the microbiota and trigger negative feedback that can contribute to impaired athletic performance. 

Preclinical and early human research has shown potential probiotic benefits relevant to an athletic population that include improved body composition and lean body mass...these potential benefits require validation in more rigorous human studies and in an athletic population.

ISSN Position Stand: Probiotics, Dec 2019

Implications of the Gut Microbiome in Sports

A clinical review that found diet and exercise play important roles in the composition of the gut microbiota in both athletic and nonathletic individuals. Diet and exercise may have synergistic effects on changes in the microbiome composition that enhance both immune function and athletic performance.

The Athlete Gut Microbiome and its Relevance to Health and Performance: A Review

Overview: Study was a clinical review that found there is a bidirectional relationship between exercise and the gut microbiome, suggesting that exercise has a significant effect on the gut microbiome.

International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: Probiotics

This one is a few years old, but as always, the ISSN provides an excellent overview of probiotics and gut health in this position stand. 

Overview (Microbiome): Athletes have varying gut microbiota compositions that appear to reflect the activity level of the host in comparison to sedentary people. These differences are linked to the volume of exercise and the amount of protein composition.

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