Friendly bacteria, we hear a lot about them in adverts that try to convince us we should drink liquids that are full of them to help improve our gut health. But, as tasty as these drinks are, is this really the best way to improve gut health?
Well, according to researchers who have published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, another way to increase Lactobacillus (one of the bacteria in yogurt) in the gut is to eat walnuts.
Walnuts already have a good reputation as a health promoting part to a varied diet. We have blogged about them a few times for other health benefits (Nutty diet, Non fishy omega-3).
In this publication, the researchers took a group of rats and fed half a diet supplemented with walnuts and the other half with no walnut. Consuming walnuts led to an increase in the diversity of gut bacteria, which is considered desirable as obesity and inflammatory bowel disease are associated with low diversity.
I am not sure if I would be ready to ditch my daily yogurt yet, but including a nice afternoon snack of a few walnuts doesn’t sound bad to me.