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Microbiome composition associated with exercise performance: Study

Specifically, the research observed a correlation between species such as Bifidobacterium longum​ and Bifidobacterium adolescentis ​and all assessed performance measures, but most significantly with VO2​max.

In addition, beneficial short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) producing species were found to be associated with maximal power during high intense exercise.

“To our knowledge, no study has yet compared the microbiome of trained (non-elite) and untrained individuals,” the Polish researchers wrote. “Our results confirmed that the health status of individuals are consistent with assumptions about microbiome health. Furthermore, our findings indicate that microbiome features are associated with better performance previously identified in elite athletes.”

The study, published in the journal Plos One​, was funded by the Polish National Science Centre.

Microbiome and exercise performance

The growing study of the gut microbiome has established that many host factors can influence its composition including, sleep, diet and age. Dysbiosis of the gut microbiome can lead to an array of adverse outcomes and may be linked to many immunoregulatory disorders.

The benefits of a physically active lifestyle have been well established, but it has been observed that exercise may result in both acute and chronic alterations in the microbiome to promote positive health outcomes. In addition, research has suggested that the microbiome may be linked to sporting performance, and altering its composition may enable targeted performance improvements.

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