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"Plant-based diets shine when looking at the gut microbiome"

Contemporary Pediatrics referenced a study authored by Dena Herman, Fielding School adjunct associate professor of community health sciences, which investigates how foods, including plant-based proteins, fresh fruits and vegetables, and grains impact gut health in children.

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Date: 
Monday, September 7, 2020
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There has been a wealth of evidence collected on how important the gut microbiome is for health maintenance, but little research has been done on how diet habits are related to gut health in prepubescent children. A recent study took a closer look.
 
The study,1 published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, reveals that gut health in young children and pre-pubescent teenagers is both dynamic and diverse, and is particularly responsive to certain food groups.
 
“The gut microbiome remains dynamic for children past 3 years of age and responds to dietary differences,” says lead author Dena Herman, PhD, MPH, RD, professor at California State University, Northridge and director of the MCH Nutrition Leadership Training Program at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. “This represents an opportunity to learn healthy habits early in life so that they can be sustained over the life course to maximize health.”