Will a Healthy Gut contribute to your cardiovascular disease?
Gut health and immunity
A large section of your immune system is on your gut. It supports numerous functions in the body. This includes processes such as digestion, hormone balance, and toxic and waste elimination. Furthermore, it facilitates skin and mental health maintenance. Similarly, it acts as a protective barrier against infections. Therefore, being aware of your gut health can prevent a multitude of subsequent health problems.
How do you know if your gut is healthy?
- A regular bowel movement throughout the week
- No bloating, abdominal pain or stomach inflammations
- You consume wholesome food and get proper sleep
Microbes and heart disease
Your body carries microbes such as bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms. Most of them are found in the intestines. These microbes facilitate digestion and create nutrients. Furthermore, the microbes produce genes, which are collectively called microbiome.
The microbiomes produce proteins, similar to the human body. However, your health may get affected when the microbiomes release this proteins into the blood stream. In essence, the microbes can harm your heart health.
How do the microbes cause cardiovascular diseases?
- The gut microbiome is a risk factor for obesity
- It may develop type 2 diabetes
- It affects LDL (bad) cholesterol levels
- May increase blood pressure
- It may cause a plaque rupture in the arteries, make artery enlargement difficult, and also raise the possibilities of a blood clot
The above reasons increase the chances of developing heart diseases. The microbes demonstrate a connection with the other systems in the body such as the immune, vascular, endocrine and nervous systems. The key point here is how it determines your heart health and affects your cardiovascular system.
How does your gut health affect the risk of heart disease?
A substance called trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) is made in the liver. This comes from trimethylamine (TMA), which is created when gut bacteria feeds on dietary choline in red meat, fish, poultry and eggs. TMAO is detrimental as it may lead to a plaque that clogs arteries, known as atherosclerosis.
Subsequently, this is likely to intensify the odds of heart attacks and strokes. Moreover, studies show that greater TMAO in the blood leads to higher fatalities, irrespective of the other risk factors such as diabetes, obesity and kidney diseases present.
Are all gut microbes bad for your health?
The answer is no. When you eat a high-fibre diet, it helps the development of certain gut bacteria that can produce short-chain fatty acids. These may be beneficial for blood sugar and weight control as per a study conducted on this development.
Additionally, the short-chain fatty acids are useful to manage the dilation and constriction of blood vessels. As a result, it can help control blood pressure.
Read more on measure you can take to control heart disease by including these 5 types of Sri Lankan food in your cooking.
Harvard Health Publishing (2018) Are gut bacteria linked to heart health? Available at:
Harvard Health Publishing (2018) Healthy gut, healthy heart. Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu
Healthline (2018) 3 ways healthy gut impacts heart health. Available at:
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Heart Foundation (2019) Can you help your heart with a healthy gut? Available at:
Healthline (2018) If your gut could talk: 10 things you should know. Available at:
Harvard Health Publishing (2016) Can gut bacteria improve your health? Available at: