Human gut microbiome research has linked imbalances in the gut microbiota with several suboptimal health conditions. Consequently, the application of dietary interventions including foods (i.e., fermented foods [FFs]) and food supplements (i.e., probiotics) that contain live microorganisms to positively impact the gut microbiota and, in turn, health, has been the subject of much attention. Evidence indicates that consumption of FFs as well as probiotics can be protective against a wide range of ailments. However, despite the large body of evidence relating to the health benefits of specific probiotics and FFs, there is an absence of recommended dietary allowances (RDA) relating to the consumption of live microbes. This is partly due to an incomplete understanding of the more general health benefits imparted by ingesting live microbes. To address this, the research team will conduct an in-depth evidence mapping exercise to understand the breadth of evidence linking ingestion of live microbes with potential health benefits. This evidence mapping exercise will form a key step in a process towards determining the merits of recommending a level of live microbe intake that can be linked to positive health outcomes.
Institution: Agriculture and Food Development Authority, Republic of Ireland
Principal Investigator: Paul Cotter, PhD
Year Awarded: 2020
View this project on the Center for Open Science’s Open Science Framework.
This project was supported by the IAFNS Gut Microbiome Committee