Education/Gut Health

Mapping Your Microbiome

Mapping Your Microbiome

If you’ve followed TNN for some time now, I’m sure you’ve heard me say how important it is that we “test, don’t guess” when it comes to our health. And in particular our gut health. I meet and hear about too many people neglecting the basics, drinking kombucha like water and wasting their money on expensive probiotics that simply aren’t specific enough.

Considering all disease starts in the gut, and so too does all health, we absolutely have to be understanding and optimising our microbiome in order to thrive.

I’ve worked with many different companies over my time as a practitioner, and I’m so excited to be partnering up with Microba and Metagenics for their MetaBiomeTM test, a complete map of your microbiome. Conducted via a simple stool swab, Microba’s shot-gun metagenome sequencing allows us to see not only what bugs are in your gut, but what they are doing (i.e. what potential impact their metabolites may be having on your health).

So let’s dive in and discuss what kind of information we now have access to with this incredible technology.

Metabiome Score 

This score is an indication of your overall gut health, based on the latest scientific evidence. An ideal score is 70-98, and less than 70 will allow us to take a much deeper dive into the underlying root cause of any more obvious health symptoms. Anywhere between 70-98 can of course also be optimised. Click here to view an example of my personal MetaBiomeTM score. Note: this is the first page of a very comprehensive report, to show you what factors contribute to this overall total.

Functional Insights

Again, what our gut bugs are capable of doing is far more important than a list of what makes up our microbiome. In terms of the functional insights, we can then understand how these metabolites are impacting key areas including: 

  • General Gut Health
  • Gut Mucosal Health
  • Gut Motility
  • Metabolic Health
  • Nervous System Health
  • Immune Health
  • Inflammatory Balance
  • Detoxification

You’ll notice far more than just your typical gut symptoms here. It is important to acknowledge that any imbalance of the gut (dysbiosis) can be systemic, and definitely not just isolated to irritable bowel-like symptoms.

Microbiome Diversity

Microbial diversity is a measure of the number of different microorganisms and their total abundance. MetaBiomeTM  use the Shannon Index, which is a measure of diversity used by the scientific community, allowing results to be compared over time. High microbial diversity is highly correlated with exceptional health.

Microbiome Composition

What’s incredible is that the testing also includes a list of each species detected in your microbiome, listed in order of abundance. Microba have discovered over 600 new species since the development of their technology and many of which we are only just starting to understand more about. It’s such an incredible area of science and one that is evolving rapidly, so watch this space! 

Microbiome Fuel

We know that different microbes use different prebiotic fibres as fuel for them to grow, and now things have gotten even more specific. Your MetaBiomeTM report also includes a comprehensive list of foods that promote the growth of beneficial species of bacteria which were detected at below optimal levels in your sample. I just absolutely love that we can look at not only resistant starch, but foods high in inulin, pectin, fructooligosaccharides, galactooligosaccharides, arabinoxylan and proanthocyanidin. You can also exclude for foods containing FODMAPs, fructans, fructose, gluten, peanut or treenut, polyols or wheat (which I also love because I don’t want you to think that eating breakfast cereal is going to improve your microbiome **face palm**).

So remember, the functional capacity of your microbiome is more important than the species that inhabit it. I’d love you to consider mapping your microbiome and empowering yourself with the knowledge to rebalance your gut and elevate your health and longevity. 

The total cost of your MetaBiomeTM test and report is $349 but when included in our Initial Consult + Gut Testing (80 mins) package, the total cost ranges from $580 to $625 (practitioner dependant) and you’ll receive an 80-minute consultation with myself or the team here at TNN to address your health goals, cement the basics, review your report and develop a 3-6 month plan to get you to a score of 98! Please book a complimentary 15-minute chat here to discuss this further.



2 thoughts on “Mapping Your Microbiome

  1. Is the new testing affected by things like consuming probiotic foods, echinacea etc in the few weeks before doing the test (like Bioscreen)?
    Thank you

    1. It’s slightly different in that it’s only three day prior that we recommend pausing probiotics and anything antimicrobial in nature. This is due to the fact that it is DNA based technology and does not involve stool culturing based methods. I hope that helps.

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