Dr Meltem Yalinay spoke to us about her findings on how fasting affects gut health

Dr Yalinay studied the effect of Islamic fasting. While she found blood cholesterol levels and sugar levels were positively impacted, what was most interesting to her was the effect on the gut microbiota

Gut microbiota or gut flora is a complex community of microorganisms that live in our digestive tracts. It plays a key role in our metabolism and general health.

She found that the types of bacteria that are good for the gut microbiota – the ones that are related to the metabolic rise and the metabolism of the gut – increased after a period of Islamic fasting.

“Islamic fasting is a very good model for the gut microbiota richness and gut microbiota health,” says Dr Yalinay.

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Healthy ageing linked to a healthy gut

She believes that adults benefit from periods of hunger and, instead of three main meals, we may be better off if we only ate two, which ensures a period of daily fasting.

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