Writing Exercise #5

I like to consider myself a fairly healthy eater. While I do not often adhere to strict diets, I like to make sure that I balance my consumption of different types of foods, including fruits, vegetables, grains, and protein. Also, I tend to get macronutrients from multiple different sources (i.e. protein from lean meats and beans). A diverse diet provides a wide array of nutrients for the gut microbiota to feed on, which thereby contributes to the development of a more diverse gut microbiome. I also make sure that I eat some form of probiotic when on a course of antibiotics. While both of these contribute to an increase in diversity of my gut microbial community, some things can limit it. Aside from occasionally taking antibiotics when I am sick, eating foods, especially meats, that have been treated with antibiotics can decrease the overall diversity of my gut microbiome. This is often an unconscious choice that is made when buying groceries, because sometimes I opt for cheaper options that are treated with more antibiotics, as opposed to a more organic and expensive product.

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