Want a long, healthy life? Start BEFORE you are born: epigenetics, breast feeding, probiotics and more.
In the publication, “Epigenetic Matters: The Link between Early Nutrition, Microbiome, and Long-term Health Development” found in the 5th volume of the journal Frontiers in Pediatrics, Indrio, F., et al describe how the mother’s nutrition, infant diet and gut bacteria, even before the child is born all contribute to health outcomes as the child develops into adulthood. This is a summary and interpretation of their findings.
This study focuses on the idea of epigenetics. Epigenetics is the area of study that means “on top of genetics” and describes the changes that things like environment, bacteria and nutrition can make in your body without even touching your DNA. You get your unique set of DNA, with all the genes (small, coding regions of DNA that determine your appearance and function) it carries from your mom and dad. However, the genes can be flipped on and off, like a light switch. A gene turned on makes a product that can be seen and affects you. A gene turned off, is just sitting there, not making anything. All that makes you who you are is a total result of which of your genes are flipped on.
FIRST 1,000 DAYS
Did you know this flipping on and off of genes starts even before you are born? But, what flips them on and off? It can be the food you eat, the bacteria and microbes living in your gut, or your environment and what you are exposed to. The time of life when this is most active is the “first 1,000 days” from conception until age two. The result of this time period can “pre-set” a person for later development of chronic conditions, including heart disease, obesity, diabetes and much more.
The human gut is the place where microbes, like bacteria, touch and talk to the immune system cells on a constant basis. The intestine is covered with patches of immune cells. During the first years, this
Kenda Rigdon, Ph.D. Nutrition Sciences Research Associate, Wife, Mother of 3 and Enthusiast for all things Microbiome and gut related!
Check out this blog in the April, 2018 edition of the Birmingham Metro magazine: b-metro.com/b-yourself-kenda-rigdon/34337/
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