What happens to your gut health when you take antibiotics?
In this episode of the Biohacking Superhuman Performance podcast, we chat with Colleen Cutcliffe of Pendulum Life about the effects of our gut microbiome on our mental health, metabolism, energy levels, and learn to pinpoint signs of compromised gut health.
Colleen dissects the nuances of probiotics, prebiotics, postbiotics, and synbiotics, and how these elements interact in our gut. Additionally, we examine the often-underestimated impact of antibiotics on our microbiome and how it can be combated with effective strategies.
Lastly, we shift our focus to a specific strain of bacteria, known as akkermansia, and explore their role in food metabolism and mood regulation. In the same vein, we contemplate on the potential risks of long-term drug use including GLP-1, and delve into the impact of metformin on gut health.
Colleen Cutcliffe is the CEO and Co-Founder of Pendulum Therapeutics. Colleen has over 20 years of experience managing and leading teams in biotech, pharma and academia. Prior to that, Colleen was a Scientist at Elan Pharmaceuticals. Colleen completed her postdoctoral research at Northwestern’s Children’s Memorial Hospital, received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Johns Hopkins University and received her B.A. in Biochemistry from Wellesley College.
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What we discuss:
(00:02) - Gut Health and Mental Health Connection
(07:43) - Understanding Gut Health and Microbiome Terminology
(19:16) - The Battle of Diets and Nutrition
(26:37) - Antibiotics' Impact on Microbiome and Rebalancing Strategies
(35:37) - Gut Microbiome and Healthy Aging
(44:30) - Risks of Long-Term Antibiotic Use
(58:39) - Benefits and Challenges of Akkermansia
(01:04:49) - Live Probiotics and Colonization Importance
Nutrition is an important part of gut health. However, there isn’t a particular diet that will make or break your gut health nor can you eat a nutrient-poor diet and expect probiotic supplements to keep your gut microbiome in good shape. Simply aiming to eat a balanced, nutrient rich diet is the way to go.
While antibiotics have a negative impact on your gut health, it does come with a plus side. Given that antibiotics eliminate all bacteria – good and bad – the timeframe following an antibiotic treatment is a great time to focus on fixing your diet so you can repopulate your gut microbiome with the appropriate strains.
While many of us blame our poor willpower for our cravings, it’s usually our gut microbiome that is to blame. Luckily, there are specific strains one can supplement to help increase GLP-1 and GABA production to stimulate satiety and reduce anxiety, which helps reduce cravings overall.