BBC2 features Life Sciences research on which foods improve gut bacteria

  • Wednesday, February 1, 2017

BBC2’s programme ‘Trust Me I’m a Doctor’ features Life Sciences research to find out which foods improve gut bacteria.

Dr Adele Costabile from the Department of Life Sciences at the University of Roehampton devised an experiment for the television show to find out how probiotic (friendly bacteria) yoghurt drinks can help improve gut bacteria and our overall health.

Taking place in Inverness, and with the help of NHS Highland, they studied thirty volunteers that were split into three groups over four weeks. The first group tired an off-the-shelf probiotic drink found in most supermarkets that contain two species of bacteria that can survive the journey through our stomach to the intestines. The second group tired a fermented drink called kefir containing an array of bacteria and yeast. The third group ate foods that were rich in prebiotic (substances that feed the bacteria already in living in our gut) fibre called inulin.

Dr Adele Costable said “It was found that probiotics positively influence digestive health, because they stimulate the immune system. An increasing number of studies seem to support these claims, but the mechanisms to explain these effects as yet are unclear.”

To find out more about the research read an article here or tune into BBC2 at 8pm.

The Department of Life Sciences offers outstanding undergraduate and postgraduate degrees including Nutrition and Health and Nutrition and Metabolic Disorders.