Are you confused about the science around nutrition for runners? Listen in to learn about the WHY, HOW, WHAT, and WHEN of eating to fuel your running performance. We are here to help you translate sports nutritional science, into easy to apply tips and plans, helping you enjoy peak running performance. We focus on the FEMALE FACTORS every woman needs to know to be a healthy runner. This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis: Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy
Managing Painful Joints and Running
54:46Managing Painful Joints and Running There are many reasons for runners developing painful joints; · Osteoarthritis (OA) is a wear-and-tear condition that occurs when cartilage breaks down over time. OA can affect all joints for example knees, hips, ankles, feet, elbows, hands · A friction issue between muscles/tendons and bones e.g. tendinopathy · Torn cartilage or inflammation · Muscle imbalance Today we will focus our discussion on Osteoarthritis; 1. What may be contributing to the development of OA and who is at risk of developing OA? 2. Will running increase the progression of OA or make the symptoms worse? 3. Our Food Plan TIPS and Exercise considerations to help you. https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) SHOW NOTES (07:51) An Overview of Osteoarthritis (09:48) Typical Signs and Symptoms (11:43) The RISK FACTORS for developing osteoarthritis (13:56) The prevalence of Osteoarthritis in the general population. (16:09) Is there a prevalence of osteoarthritis in endurance runners? (17:44) Being a healthy runner may help you modify risk factors for the development of osteoarthritis. (18:12) Will running increased the progression of osteoarthritis? And if you have Osteoarthritis should you consider stop running? (19:29) Reviewing the finding of study - 2019 Paper published in BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine – they posed a question … Can marathon running improve knee damage of middle-aged adults? A prospective cohort study https://bmjopensem.bmj.com/content/5/1/e000586 (https://bmjopensem.bmj.com/content/5/1/e000586) (25:01) Reviewing the findings of a 2018 study Running Does Not Increase Symptoms or Structural Progression in People with Knee Osteoarthritis: Data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC6095814/ (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC6095814/) (33:23) Food to help modify risk factors for Osteoarthritis and manage progression of the condition Our Food Plan TIPS to help you, starting with the Mediterranean Diet. (37:06) Our Food Plan TIPS to help you – using healthy fats. (41:10) Our Food Plan TIPS to help you support Gut Microbiome. (46:28) Exercise and running considerations (49:56) KEY TAKEAWAYS 1. There are many reasons for painful joints including OA, friction issues, damage to tendons or muscle imbalances – consult with an exercise specialist to identify the root cause of your pain. 2. OA is Osteoarthritis is a chronic, progressive joint disease which is influenced by many environmental factors including diet, body composition, metabolic health conditions. 3. Under the direction of your exercise specialist or coach it may be possible to maintain a supportive running schedule which may promote aspects of musculoskeletal health and help alleviate symptoms of pain and dysfunction and degeneration. 4. A runner should include injury prevention exercises that target those areas of which are more susceptible to damage. 5. Evidence suggests that following an Anti-Inflammatory Mediterranean Food Plan, including a balance of Omega 3:6 fatty acids plus a wide range of vegetables and whole foods will help to reduce the development of OA. Just a final note there are so many other nutritional aspects supportive of...
Bicarbonate to Boost Running?
49:12Bicarbonate to Boost Running? Can you believe that Bicarbonate loading in athletes has been practiced for over 70yrs, which is amazing considering many people have no idea about it!! Also….can you believe that the household product Bicarbonate of Soda appears to be, or certainly was, the most common form!! Early studies suggested Sodium Bicarbonate (to give Bicarbonate of Soda its proper name!!) could improve performance by up to 3%...which is significant! This led to it being widely researched as a potential ergogenic aid in sport and exercise during the 70s and 80s. It is now thought to be one of the most researched ergogenic supplements. So, today we are going to delve into some of the research to outline: What Sodium Bicarbonate is and how it works The potential benefits and drawbacks of SB Supplementation for a runner A supplementation Protocol: How much, how often and when to take SB Supplementation….if at all!! https://runnershealthhub.com/bicarbonate-to-boost-running/ (Read full article here) https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) Show Notes: (05:54) What is Bicarbonate? Here we explore the role of Bicarbonate in the body: its endogenous production, its utilisation during exercise and its removal from the body. (19:35) The Benefits and Drawbacks of Sodium Bicarbonate Supplementation The body can produce bicarbonate by itself to help maintain Blood pH balance, however intense exercise sustained over a period of time may lead to the body’s capacity to produce Bicarbonate being overwhelmed. Sodium bicarbonate in supplement form may support the buffering system therefore delay the onset of muscle fatigue brought on by acid build up, principally Hydrogen ions and lactate, which are by-products of anaerobic respiration. Here we delve into both the positive and negative effects sodium bicarbonate supplementation may have on sports performance including: Benefits: 1. Delayed onset of muscular fatigue 2. Mitochondrial protection 3. Improved mitochondrial function Drawbacks: Gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms: Less severe – bloating and belching More severe – nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhoea (28:43) FEMALE FACTORS: The difference in performance effects of Sodium Bicarbonate appears to be gender specific. Studies have found that females respond to sodium bicarbonate to a lesser extent than males. This appears to be due to differences in muscle anatomy and physiology. For example: Females have smaller type II muscle fibers than men and type II fibers rely predominantly on the glycolytic energy system. Males have greater glycolytic capacity – in other words, the ability to produce energy anaerobically i.e. in times of insufficient O2 availability - as we mentioned at the beginning Females’ pH drops to a lesser extent that in males during the same type of exercise BUT it is important to note that none of the studies took the female menstrual cycle into account when carrying out the research. So, could it be the menstrual cycle that leads to reduced athletic performance rather than the Sodium Bicarbonate supplementation? A question that requires answering through research. (34:27) A Sodium Bicarbonate Supplement Protocol: Here we investigate what is thought to be the optimal intake of sodium bicarbonate to support sports performance. We look at: How much, how often and when to take this supplement. (43:59) KEY TAKEAWAYS 1) Sodium bicarbonate is produced by the body as a buffer in many body systems, however it is also taken externally as an ergogenic aid in sport and...
FOOD Plan FOR.....Winter Running
30:10Our winter health aims as a runner, are to protect against winter infections, support the immune function and promote circulation and blood flow in the cold weather. In this episode we focus on 4 seasonal fruits and vegetables to support health and running performance during the winter months. We outline the nutritional properties of each and consider how they can form part of your meal plan with some menu ideas. Finally, we share an example 1-day meal plan using these 4 winter foods. The 4 foods we discuss are; Butternut Squash, Cranberries, Pears and Beetroot Nutritional Properties of Butternut Squash – a great source of carbohydrate, Vitamin C, and B vitamins – supportive of immune system, energy production and soft tissue support. Nutritional Properties of Cranberries – packed full of phytonutrients, in particular proanthocyanidin (PAC) helpful to prevent and treat infections. Many studies highlight positive effect on urinary tract infections. The key mechanism being that PACs inhibit the adhesion of bacteria to the wall of the urinary tract. Nutritional Properties of Pears – contain the phytonutrient epicatechin, a compound thought to be involved in the contraction and relaxation of arteries, so supportive of our cardiac cardiac health. Nutritional Properties of Beetroot – contain nitrates which help promote blood flow and they have been shown to help dilate blood vessels. This helps to enable an increase and efficient flow of oxygen through the blood vessels, which clearly is going to provide us with more energy and for our running. Beet greens are also nutrient dense providing calcium, iron and vitamin C. KEY TAKE AWAYS: Butternut Squash for carbohydrate, vitamin C, and B vitamins for fuel, energy and supporting your immune system Cranberries for Proanthocyanidin (PAC) to support immune system, protect against infections, especially urinary tract infections Pears for Epicatechin to support blood flow and contraction and relaxation of arteries Beetroot for nitrates to support dilation of blood vessels and efficient flow of oxygen via blood vessels This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis: Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy
Winter Running Nutrition and Safety
43:44Winter Running Nutrition and Safety Do you ever consider your nutrition for your winter running? As the nights draw in, the mornings get darker and the days get colder do you think about what foods and nutrients you may need to keep you healthy as you run through the winter months? In this episode we look at some key nutrients for you to consider, helping keep your immune system in Optimal Health. The nutrients we discuss are: Vitamin C Vitamin D Magnesium Omega 3 Beta-glucans But as well as the nutrients you may wish to consider, we also give you some practical tips to help keep you safe and warm as you head out the door on those cold winter mornings including: Remaining visible Foot wear Layering up Omitting risk KEY TAKEAWAYS: There are many nutrients to consider to help keep you healthy during the winter months, however our 5 principal ones are: Vitamin C and D, Magnesium, Omega-3 and Beta-Glucans. These 5 key nutrients have many diverse roles in health and wellbeing, but they are all important in supporting immune health Remember that women are more susceptible to autoimmune conditions. So a good reason to try and maintain optimal immune health all year round, but especially during the winter months. There are daily Recommended Nutrition Intake levels for most nutrients set out by UK govt bodies, however these are set at levels known to prevent illness in the majority of people, they are not recommended optimal intake levels. Remember that certain nutrients can be lost from food through exposure to air, cooking methods and other factors so be mindful of this when considering your daily intake of key nutrients for your winter running. Moving away from food and nutrients and thinking about the practicalities of winter running. It is important that we take extra precautions when running outside, both for our safety and for our health. Ensure you can see and bee seen. Run in well-lit areas wherever possible and consider wearing a high-viz jacket and head torch. Keep warm, especially if going out for a long run. Wear layers as you can always take them off and tie hem round your waist. Remember to take a hat and gloves, remember exposure of the head and face are thought to account for a large proportion of body heat loss. Finally, don’t take risks, if the weather or environmental conditions are not conducive to safe running then keep active doing another sport for a short while e.g. swimming, gym, treadmill, spinning This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis: Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy
Pressing the Pause Button and Happy 2022
3:28We are pressing the pause button this week only - listen to hear our news This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis: Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy
TOPIC REVIEW: Fasting and Performance
31:48TOPIC REVIEW......Fasting and Performance As the end of the year is nigh, we decided to have a look through our back catalogue of Podcast episodes and discovered we have released over 90 episodes and have had over 21,000 downloads since we started Podcasting back in April 2020, which is very exciting and all thanks to you, our loyal followers. We went on to explore which of the episodes has been most popular, and the all-time most popular one is: Episode 18 Intermittent Fasting and the Female Runner. We then decided to review it and give you any updates on the subject. So here we will: Pull out key highlights from Ep18 Introduce some new information from recent studies Give tips on including fasting in your daily/training life Some of you may also find this information helpful in getting you “back on track” with your healthy eating routines following the indulgences of Christmas. https://runnershealthhub.com/topic-review-fasting-and-performance/ (Read full article here) https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) SHOW NOTES: In the past 10-15 years we have become aware of FASTING as a way to promote good health, longevity and weight loss. There are so many different fasting approaches it can be difficult to know if FASTING would be health promoting for YOU as an individual and if it would help you as a runner. Here we summarise Episode 18 Intermittent Fasting and the Female Runner. (07:40) The Different Approaches to Intermittent Fasting (10:07) The Benefits of Intermittent Fasting (11:34) The Drawbacks of Intermittent Fasting (13:50) FEMALE FACTORS If fasting leads to a high requirement for Cortisol, that takes priority over making female sex hormones and the knock-on effect from this is disruption in sex hormonal balance possibly leading to: disrupted periods, fertility issues, low sex drive, peri and menopause symptoms and other hormonally driven health conditions. Women appear to lose more weight and percentage body fat than men following fasting Metabolism of the substrates of Protein/fat/CHO may differ between males and females and this could be influenced by the menstrual cycle and oral contraception. (17:03) Updates on Intermittent Fasting and Sports Performance (24:09) Tips on Including Intermittent Fasting in YOUR Daily Life and Training (28:01) KEY TAKEAWAYS Fasting comes in various forms – it is about choosing then approach that fits best with your running training and lifestyle There are strengths and pitfalls to adopting a Fasting approach to everyday life and running training so be sure to weigh these up before embarking on any Fasting style Remember fasting may impact on sex hormone balance in some women leading to disrupted periods, fertility issues, low sex drive peri and menopause symptoms Ensure you have your everyday healthy eating plan embedded before embarking on Fasting to help limit its effects on BSB Finally, remember Fasting is not for everyone…it will depend on your training, your lifestyle, your current health and other factors Related Topics: https://she-runs-eats-performs.captivate.fm/episode/intermittent-fasting-and-the-female-runner (Intermittent Fasting and the Female Runner) https://she-runs-eats-performs.captivate.fm/episode/resistant-weight-loss-for-runners (Resistant Weight Loss in Runners) https://she-runs-eats-performs.captivate.fm/episode/time-restricted-eating-and-running-performance (Time restricted Eating and Running Performance) Disclaimer: The suggestions we make during this episode are for guidance and advice only, and are not a substitute for medical advice or treatment. If
HWHR Nutritional Non-Negotiables
30:10Nutritional Non-Negotiables Do you ever find it difficult to get started with changing your food plan and making it stick? It’s a common experience! One of the ways we support our clients is to help them discover and establish their personal nutritional non-negotiables which helps lead them to success in achieving their health goals. https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) SHOW NOTES (00:39) What we mean by nutrition non-negotiables and why we feel that they're important Nutrition non-negotiables are the things that you would never do i.e. totally non-negotiable. So, it’s a tool to help you implement key nutrition practices consistently all the time. Nutrition Non-negotiables are like the big rocks in our food plan. They must happen, because they underpin everything else that we do nutritionally to get the ultimate results that we desire. (01:12) Are nutrition foundations, the same as nutritional non-negotiables? Nutritional foundations are broadly what everyone should have in place at least 80% of the time and doing that will promote good health. The next step is to add sports nutrition on top of foundations to promote good running performance. Nutritional non- negotiables are more personal to an individual. So, it's something that will contribute to an individual achieving their health goals, and something that they'll stand by no matter what, because they know it's so important to feeling better and performing optimally. (02:35) Are non-negotiables the same for everyone or different? In our Healthy Woman Healthy Runners Programme, we explain the range of non- negotiables and how they may impact on midlife health, but there's always going to be a personalised element. So usually, what we do is help clients rank what would make the biggest difference to them, and then work with them to put new practices in place, so that they'll soon be living in a way which encompasses their personal non-negotiables. (05:12) Typical mid-life health goals and how some nutrition non-negotiables would support health Based on the feedback we’ve had from clients and women in our face book group; TYPICAL MID-LIFE HEALTH GOALS · Being a healthy weight · Having optimal muscle tone · Good energy all day – no slumps or dips · Minimising hot sweats/flushes · Good quality sleep There are certain physiological drivers which lead to gaining weight, losing muscle tone, experiencing low energy, peri and menopausal symptoms and poor sleep. These physiological drivers tend to be related to fluctuating female hormones during peri menopause and decreasing female hormones in menopause and post menopause. Other factors which are influential are stress hormones, digestion and liver function. (14:04) Looking at the role of stress related to hormonal balance Stress and stress hormones are a key player in disrupting hormonal balance for example: Typically In mid-life we have a lot going on with family – children, elderly parents and lots of responsibilities – job, home etc which may put us in a place of chronic stress so it’s likely we’ll have high cortisol levels which may lead to the body storing fat around the middle. An increased cortisol production compromises production of sex hormones (known as “progesterone steal” or “cortisol steal”). This effect results in an imbalance of female sex hormones, which could exacerbate peri and menopausal symptoms. There are some nutritional considerations which may impact positively on managing stress hormones and have a
FOCUS on Festive Foods
53:22FOCUS ON ... Festive Foods We are going to fast forward to Christmas Day and chat about ENJOYING a traditional Christmas meal, getting the BALANCE right knowing that we are getting lots of amazing as well as delicious nutrients. During our last episode, https://she-runs-eats-performs.captivate.fm/episode/running-through-christmas (E79 Running through Christmas) we talked about some simple tips and practices to apply to your food and drink choices over the full festive period, and how to realistically plan and manage your exercise and running over the holiday period. Today, we’ll talk about the wonderful seasonal foods which tend to be included as part of a traditional Christmas meal and showcase their nutritional value. Today we’ll share with you our suggestions for: 1. A balanced Festive Plate 2. An 80:20 approach! A little of what you fancy! 3. Socialising (in a healthy way) with friends and family https://runnershealthhub.com/focus-on-festive-foods-for-runners/ (Read the full article here) https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) SHOW NOTES (05:00) What food to include on your Festive Plate Christmas is a celebration, so enjoying traditional festive foods is part of that celebration, so we personally think we all should embrace that. Many of the festive foods at this time of the year are full of nutritional value so we should embrace that too. Festive over-eating and the tendency to have extra large portions may lead to weight gain, feeling bloated and sluggish after we’ve eaten which may have a knock-on effect on our energy next day and on our next training run. The easiest thing we can do is follow everyday plate balance at every mealtime – which is ¼ plate of protein, ¼ plate carbohydrates and ½ plate of non-root veggies. We think on Christmas Day portions may be a little bit bigger but it’s key to get all 3 elements on your plate in proportion. (06:53) Protein Choices for your Festive Plate (15:21) Carbohydrate Choices for your Festive Plate (18:51) Christmas Vegetables Choices for your Festive Plate (23:19) How do you have an 80:20 approach around food and drink at Christmas? (38:52) Socialising in a Healthy Way (47:59) KEY TAKEAWAYS 1. A traditional Christmas meal has all the ingredients for a healthy plate · Turkey is lean and protein rich and supplies tryptophan an essential amino acid which is a precursor for serotonin and melatonin · The main source of carbohydrates on the festive plate are root vegetables e.g. carrots, parsnips and potatoes. You may also consider beetroot, sweet potatoes and celeriac · Our favourite traditional non root vegetables are brussels sprouts and spiced red cabbage · Add seasonal ingredients such as chestnuts, walnuts, sage and cranberries to your recipes 2. Follow an EVERYDAY PLATE BALANCE of ¼ plate protein, ¼ plate carbohydrates, ½ plate non root vegetables for your Festive Meals unless you are following a moderate or hard training plan. 3. Set your personal boundaries around what/when and how much you choose to eat and drink over the festive period. 4. Plan when you will return to your food and running plan. 5. When choosing food and drinks – ask yourself – will this make me feel good today, tomorrow and next week! 6. Enjoy celebrating with festive...
Running Through Christmas
52:27Running Through Christmas Christmas is fast approaching and with it comes more eating, drinking, partying and celebrating. Christmas is a time of celebration so it is important to embrace it and have fun. BUT, it is also a time when many people abandon their healthy eating and exercise routines, which could lead to weight gain, poor energy, sluggishness and ultimately poor running performance. So, here we give some HINTS and TIPS on 3 key areas of health to help keep you running into and through Christmas. We give hints and tips on: Eating Drinking Running https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) Show Notes (04:53) Eating Through Christmas: DID YOU KNOW…….. Over half of the increase in body weight during adulthood is thought to take place during the Christmas holiday period The average weight gain during this period is between 0.5Kg-1Kg (1-2 pounds) It would appear that weight gained at this time (for many but not all) is never fully lost Small amount gained BUT when looking at it over 10yrs it is a weight gain of 5-10Kg So, what are the principle reasons for weight gain at this time of year? The answer to this question is fairly straightforward. It is generally linked to: Reduced exercise Increased availability of energy dense foods e.g. cake, mince pies, Christmas pudding and of course alcohol Bigger food portions More social occasions Research surveys show that the underlying reasons for this include: Over-consumption – it is thought that individuals may consume 6000Kcal on Christmas day alone, which is 3 x the recommended daily intake. This intake could be more like 4 x the recommended daily intake for some people for example: people trying to lose weight, older people, post menopausal women Sedentary behaviour – people are more relaxed and more sociable leading to reduced physical activity Sleep – some studies (but not all) have shown than individuals tend to sleep more during the winter – suggesting there is less physical activity being performed – both incidental and scheduled activity. Greater variety of “Christmas only” energy dense foods - such as the mince pies and Christmas pudding we mentioned earlier…. because these foods are available for a limited period only, some people tend to over-indulge Family/friend peer pressure to eat/drink - “because it is Christmas” – this is very common BUT, it is important to note that this is a generalization; some people do not change their eating/exercise habits at all during this period, however they appear to be in the minority (13:35) Hints and Tips to keep your NUTRITION on track over the festive period: Follow the 80:20 rule: eat healthy 80% of the time and indulge in something you enjoy 20% of the time. Now this could be observed on a daily basis, so having a small amount of a “Christmas food” that you like each day. Manage portion size: remember plate balance – ¼ plate protein, ¼ plate CHO, ½ plate vegetables. This is a very simple but essential and effective way of helping manage weight gain over the Christmas period. Make your own food – by making your own foods you can manage what ingredients you use. You can also adapt recipes and substitute certain ingredients for healthier option for example replacing white sugar with coconut sugar or honey Remain Mindful when making food choices – often food choices and how much people eat is a mindless activity and this is when overeating can occur. Aim to remain mindful by: making time to eat, sitting at the table, thinking about the reason for choosing a particular food. For example is it for pleasure? for...
SPOTLIGHT ON...........Probiotics for Performance
50:58 SPOTLIGHT ON....Probiotics for Performance Are you aware that Probiotics, in the form of food and/or nutritional supplementation, may support your running performance? It is well known that Probiotics have the ability to enhance general health through modulation of the immune system and maintaining intestinal barrier integrity as well as by limiting pathogen adhesion to host tissue BUT a lot less is known about Probiotics potential to enhance exercise performance. Research in the area of Probiotic use as an ergogenic aid in sport and exercise performance is relatively new, but growing especially linked to athletes and their Gastrointestinal health and Immunity. BUT research is also looking at Probiotics linked to specific aspects of exercise and performance including recovery, physical fatigue, and body composition. So here we: Delve into the effects of Probiotics on athletic performance Discuss the different types of Probiotics (Food and Supplements) Give advice on choosing Probiotics https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK YOUR PLACE) on our next FREE TRAINING: Learn all about our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Method. We love podcasting but we love being with you LIVE even more so we can’t wait to meet you in our ZOOM ROOM!https://sunny-trailblazer-4067.ck.page/22871f11a5 (BOOK HERE!) SHOW NOTES: (03:50) Understanding Probiotics and What They Are In our digestive system (and other parts of the body, but primarily the digestive tract) reside many different microbes that are both helpful and potentially harmful. This is known as an individual’s Microbiome – each person’s microbiome being unique to them. Most microbes (also known as microbiota) are symbiotic meaning both the human body and microbiota benefit. BUT some, in smaller numbers can be pathogenic (promoting disease). In a healthy body, pathogenic and symbiotic microbiota coexist without problems. BUT if there is a disturbance in that balance—brought on for example by an infectious illness, a certain eating style/diet choice, or the prolonged use of antibiotics or other bacteria-destroying medications then DYSBIOSIS (imbalance of the microbiota) occurs, stopping these normal interactions. As a result, the body may become more susceptible to illness/disease, primarily immune related disorders as 70% of the immune system resides in the digestive tract. Probiotics (which can be taken in the form of food or nutritional supplements) are micro-organisms that are widely considered to be health-promoting. Both the World health Organisation (WHO) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) state: “Probiotics are live micro-organisms that when administered orally for several weeks can increase the numbers of beneficial bacteria in the gut. These have been associated with a range of potential benefits to gut health, as well as modulation of immune function”. In the general population research into Probiotics has determined their ability to enhance health in many different ways including: Modulation of the immune response Maintenance of the intestinal barrier Limiting pathogen adhesion to host tissue Production of different metabolites such as vitamins, short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), and other molecules that act as neurotransmitters involved in gut–brain axis communication and health BUT the research into Probiotics and their effects on sports and exercise performance is much more limited. (08:11) What is the research saying about Probiotics for Exercise Performance? Recent research has indicated that probiotic supplementation could promote specific improvements in exercise performance through various pathways in athletes and physically active individuals using targeted strains of probiotics. The research appears to be focusing on Probiotics in athletes in relation to Gut health and Immunity but also particular aspects of exercise and performance including: