Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Gut Viruses Highly Influenced By Diet

September 2, 2011 by  

Gut Viruses Highly Influenced By DietThe medical community remains unsure how the host of viruses present in the human gut contribute to health and disease, but recent research suggests that diet has a lot to do with viral populations in the intestine.

In a study, a team of scientists at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine divided a cohort of subjects into three subsets: one who consumed a high-fat, low-fiber diet, another who ate foods low in fat and high in fiber and a third group that was instructed to eat what they want.

After examining the stool samples of volunteers over the course of eight days, the researchers found that participants who ate similar diets had similar populations of gut viruses.

“The study provides a new window on the vast viral populations that live in the human gut, demonstrates that they vary radically between individuals, and shows that dietary changes can affect not just bacterial populations but also viral populations,” said senior author Frederic Bushman, Ph.D.

The researchers likened the human body to a coral reef, which is inhabited by a number of organisms that bolster its health and others that can be destructive.

Special To Personal Liberty

You Sound Off! is written by our readers and appears the last Wednesday of each month. If you would like to submit an article or letter to the editor for consideration for You Sound Off!, send it to by the Friday before the last Wednesday of the month. To be considered, a submission should be 750 words or less and must include the writer's name, address and a telephone number. Only the writer's name will be published. Anonymous submissions will not be considered.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Gut Viruses Highly Influenced By Diet”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at

  • hicusdicus

    I wonder if ones poop would become contraband if one ate a steady diet of marijuana laced brownies? Would it be a felony or a misdemeanor if one did not flush.

  • eddie47d

    Is that all this article has to offer? Which group won and which of the other 2 groups did the poorest? I assume the winner is the low fat high fiber diet. Yet considering it is sacrilegious to inform anyone in what they can eat I can see why you left that information out.

  • YahCoyote

    Eddie this is what scientists call the initial establishment of a definite effect. More studies will have to be performed to establish it really is a one to one correspondece. Then a long term study that demonstrates one group has the advantageous practice. This is a well documented method for establishing a recognized phenomenom. Fortunately we also have human history as a statistically valid exceedingly large sample group. High Fiber provides that regularity that nature provides for many beneficial processes. (Cycles of the moon, the cycles of the tide, ocean current cycles, sixty cycle electrical transmission, electrons revolving around a nucleus and many, many others).

    • hicusdicus

      Well regulated, well established, Documented. From your comment I would say your fiber cycle could be backed up to the danger point Don’t stand under any fans. You did not mention, by cycle, tri cycles , 50 cycles, 4 cycles or menstrual cycles. I am sure there are many other cycles that have been overlooked.

  • coal miner

    big part of our emotions are probably influenced by the nerves in our gut … my heart can empathize with the very highly … drug that helps insulin resistance, weight loss …

  • Song

    What is more of a concern to me is that the requirements to become a medical professional are strenuous and rigorous. It requires a sound and basic knowledge of math and science and about 14 years of school and yet, doctors and researchers still seem to know very little about the human body as evidenced by articles such as this one, or cases like deaths from parasitic invaders like the youth just died of “brain eating amoeba” which once contracted almost means certain death. How incredibly sad and further illustrates how little “we” actually “know”.

    • annamon

      These kinds of articles are only meant to be thought-provoking—-
      certainly not informative. The only conclusion anyone can draw
      is to be taught to be very conscious of one’s own body; to monitor
      reactions from what one ate and to be sure to eat only organically
      as much as possible. I would venture to guess that the doctors
      and those who profit from selling medicines (posisons) would never,
      ever take these foreign matters themselves. They know that each
      body is made differently and the only thing to do is to know within
      yourself what is good for YOU. Fruits and vegetables work for almost
      everyone; still there are some that are not the best for each individual. That is why it is best to teach yourself and your
      children to monitor their own bodies, to see what is best and what
      the particular body accepts well and what it does not. Little children know this most of the time;however the parents most of the time force them to eat whatever the parents eat. Why don’t the doctors learn this from their training in school? Might there be a reason why blood types are different?

  • Chris

    You know things are kind of screwed ,when just about the only things thats goog for you is a bannan or an apple.Be wise;have a home graden.

  • Cep

    Is that Goog Or Good? Just kidding , I know what you mean.You have a “GOOD” point.Maybe we had the same English teacher,Because iCan’t spell very well either.

  • charlie

    When they say “viruses in the gut” do you really mean bacteria? If not what viruses are you talking about?

    • coal miner

      No charlie
      Viruses as well.Read my website.
      The digestive system is home to a myriad of viruses, but how they are involved in health and disease is poorly understood. Researchers have now investigated the phenomenon.

      • coal miner


        Science News Can Manufacture Defenses Against Cancer And Inflammatory Bowel Disease
        ScienceDaily (Feb. 9, 2009) — Bacteria naturally present in the human gut could produce substances that help to protect against colon cancer and provide therapy for inflammatory bowel disease. In a paper published in the journal Microbiology, researchers from the University of Aberdeen Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health and from the MTT Agrifood Research Institute in Finland report initial studies showing that bacteria in the human gut convert linoleic acid, a naturally-occurring fat in the diet, into a form called conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) which is absorbed by the gut wall.
        There are different types of CLA and not all of them have beneficial effects. The “good” form of CLA is present in dairy foods such as milk and cheese,” said Dr John Wallace of the Rowett Research Institute, “but eating lots of dairy foods won’t necessarily help our gut health as most of the fats are digested in the small intestine before they get to the large intestine, where most of our gut bacteria are found.”

        The results of these latest studies showed that several different forms of CLA are produced by gut bacteria. Fortunately, most was of the “good” kind, but Dr Wallace stressed that more extensive studies are needed. One subject produced small amounts of a CLA whose beneficial or otherwise effects are much less clear.

        The implications are that, if small quantities of dietary linoleic acid can be delivered to the large intestine, the effects on gut health will be generally beneficial in most people. He added, “The results are of special interest for individuals using anti-obesity treatments that prevent the small intestine from absorbing fats. This means that those fats – including linoleic acid – will pass into the large intestine and the gut bacteria will produce CLA. It has to be the correct CLA, so it is important to understand how individuals produce different CLA. This must depend on which types of bacteria are present.”

  • cmc

    I couldn’t see the picture, please fix the page.


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.