Gut health: Try the ‘blue poop challenge’ to learn about your microbiome

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“The wrong balance of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ gut microbes can contribute to weight gain, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, obesity and other health problems,” stated the scientists at ZOE. Dr Federica Amati – who is involved in an ongoing nutrition research project at ZOE – encourages you to take part in the ‘blue poop challenge’. This involves consuming edible blue dye – either in a muffin or shake – to measure your gut transit time.

“It’s such an exciting step in personalised nutrition,” said Dr Amati.

New research – published in the British Medical Journal – found that the blue dye method can teach us more about our intestinal health and microbiome population than through standard stool charts.

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Stool charts simply analyses how regular a person is and the appearance of the faeces.

ZOE’s research suggests there’s a complex interplay between the foods we eat, dietary inflammation, and the gut microbiome.

READ MORE: Daily morning showers may ‘do more harm than good’ – expert warning

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To learn about your gut microbiome, ZOE provides a free online analysis if you take part in the blue poop challenge.

How to take part in the blue poop challenge

The original experiment involves baking blue muffins with blue food dye, which can take up to an hour.

A more simple way is to try Indi’s Blue Body Shake, recommended by Dr Amati, who is Indi’s chief nutrition scientist.

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“Indi’s take on the blue poop challenge is a fun and easy way to get us to pay attention to our gut health,” Dr Amati said.

From there, your personalised five-page report from the blue poop challenge will be sent to you via the email you provide.

Results will include the “good” and “bad” bacteria that are likely harbouring inside of your gut.

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For example, you might be hosting “Eubacterium eligens”, which is associated with lower insulin secretion and higher polyunsaturated fat levels.

The online tool will then set you a health goal so that you can gain more good bacteria in your gut microbiome.

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