The Gut Microbiome

Powerful Foods that may Support your Gut & Help your Back Pain

The human microbiome is a collection of about 100 trillion bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other microorganisms, that live on and within the human body. Your microbiome is an important factor in overall health and wellbeing. In fact, research has shown that the microbiome plays a critical role in digesting food, regulating the immune system, and maintaining overall health.


Emerging research suggests that there is a connection between gut health and musculoskeletal problems, although the exact mechanisms are still being studied.

The main link of gut and many health problems including chronic muscle and joint, is low grade inflammation (Figure 1).

Imbalances in the gut microbiome can lead to increased intestinal permeability (leaky gut), allowing toxins and bacteria to enter the bloodstream. This can trigger a chronic state of low-grade inflammation throughout the body, including the musculoskeletal system. Chronic inflammation is associated with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and musculoskeletal pain. 

In our clinic, we tend to encourage the use of fermented foods to help restore the gut microbiome, rather than bought probiotics. That’s why we have created a list of fermented foods that we find helpful.

Please note, not all people can tolerate these foods, and manufactured probiotic supplements are still very important. Seeing your health provider is important to determine this.

Fermented foods and probiotic supplements both offer potential health benefits, but there are certain advantages associated with fermented foods:

1. Natural Food Source – Fermented foods are a natural source of probiotics. They are fermented through the natural process, where beneficial bacteria break down the sugars and starches in the food. On the other hand, probiotic supplements are manufactured products that contain specific strains of bacteria.

2. Increased Variety of Beneficial Bacteria – There is a much greater diversity of beneficial bacteria strains in fermented foods. Each type of fermented food may have different strains and species of bacteria, offering a broader spectrum of probiotic benefits. Probiotic supplements, on the other hand, typically contain specific strains in predetermined quantities.

3. Additional Nutrients – Fermented foods often contain additional nutrients that are produced during the fermentation process. For example, fermented vegetables like sauerkraut can be rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. This makes fermented foods not only a source of probiotics but also a nutritious addition to the diet. 

4. Improved Digestive Function – Fermented foods can enhance digestion. The process of fermentation partially breaks down the food, making it easier for the body to digest and absorb nutrients. It can also promote the growth of healthy gut bacteria, which are essential for maintaining a balanced digestive system.

While fermented foods offer these advantages, probiotic supplements can still be beneficial in certain situations. They provide specific heath and higher concentrations of probiotics, which may be useful for targeting specific health conditions or when the intake of fermented foods is limited. Additionally, probiotic supplements often have dietary restrictions or preferences. Ultimately, the choice between fermented foods and probiotic supplements depends on personal preferences, dietary needs, and health goals. 

Some common fermented food good for our gut microbiome include:

Kefir, Kombucha, Sauerkraut, Pickles and Miso. 

Kefir is one of the first foods we often recommend as it’s easy to add to a breakfast smoothie, and tastes like yoghurt. Kefir comes in coconut and goat milk for those with dairy intolerance. Check with your health professional regarding goat milk. Some people can be intolerant to dairy but ok with goat milk.

Krauts come in many different vegetable varieties. It’s important that it is raw to get the beneficial effects of live bacteria. Think of it like a condiment you can add to your foods.

Unfortunately, many commercially made yoghurts and kombucha are of poor quality, full of sugar and other additives. It is worth asking the advice of your health store grocer.

Book An Appointment

If you have any questions on this topic, please call us on (07) 3357 3366 or alternatively, you can book an appointment at Blue Align Chiropractic.

We’d love to help you experience better health.

DISCLAIMER: All content is created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health professional with any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.

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