Writing Exercise 5

What choices do you make in terms of food/nutrition/product use and consumption that may have an impact on your microbial communities? Consider choices that are intentional and choices that are perhaps non-intentional.

My biggest intentional choice in terms of food and nutrition is what I eat and when I eat it. The choice to eat vegetables or something healthy is a decision I face multiple times each day. I don’t think I am directly thinking about my microbial communities, but I am thinking about how I will feel or how the food is fueling my body. These things are impacted by microbial communities so I guess I am making choices on them. A lot of my food and nutrition choices follow my practice schedule for rowing and what I am asking of my body that day. So I usually make choices that impact the short term. I choose to eat less processed foods and foods with better overall nutrients on really intense training days and I notice a huge difference if I make intentional healthier choices during the day. I think these intentional choices have a positive impact on my microbial communities. By eating fewer processed foods I am supplying my gut with vitamins and minerals that are beneficial. Also, exercise is very beneficial to microbial communities. However, on less intense training days when I pay less attention to what I eat I eat more processed foods and this has a negative impact. Introducing excess sugar and other negative things while also depleting necessary vitamins and minerals my body needs. I am not intentionally harming my microbial communities by eating processed foods, but that is what is happening. I try to make balanced choices overall and part of that balance is intentional good choices with positive impact and also probably some bad choices with unintentional negative impact.

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