The application of ecological principles and fermentable fibers to manage the gastrointestinal tract ecosystem

Randal Buddington, Evan Weiher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Because diet can influence the structure and functions of the gastrointestinal tract, there are opportunities for using diet as a 'management tool' to affect the resident microbiota. Fermentable fibers increase the densities of beneficial bacteria and stimulate growth and functions of the healthy intestine. Recent findings show that after acute diarrhea, the use of an oral electrolyte solution with the fermentable fiber oligofructose accelerates recovery of beneficial bacteria, reduces the relative abundance of detrimental bacteria, stimulates mucosal growth and enhances digestive and immune functions. This review will focus on how the principles of stream ecology can be applied to better understand the distribution of bacteria along the length of the gastrointestinal tract, the effect of diarrhea on the gastrointestinal ecosystem and how fermentable fibers can be used as a 'management tool' to promote gastrointestinal health in normal states and during recovery from diarrhea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Volume129
Issue number7 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Jul 10 1999
Externally publishedYes

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Ecosystem
Gastrointestinal Tract
Bacteria
Diarrhea
Diet
Microbiota
Growth
Ecology
Electrolytes
Intestines
Health

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

The application of ecological principles and fermentable fibers to manage the gastrointestinal tract ecosystem. / Buddington, Randal; Weiher, Evan.

In: Journal of Nutrition, Vol. 129, No. 7 SUPPL., 10.07.1999.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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