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The Body Benefits of Butyrate

Adventist Health Health and Wellness

The hits keep coming-but in a really great way where your gut is concerned.

This "undiscovered country" of the body seems to be getting a lot of headlines lately. And with good reason! Scientists keep finding new ways the bacteria that live in your intestines affect much more than just digestion.

Studies have linked these bacteria-known collectively as your gut biome-to everything from your immune system to your mental health.

Butyrate: How Fiber Makes Gut Magic

Yet another win for gut enthusiasts is butyrate. This short-chain fatty acid turns out to pack a long list of health benefits.

Butyrate-also called butyric acid, or BTA-is created by your gut bacteria as they ferment dietary fiber. When you eat lots of fiber-rich foods like fruit, vegetables and whole grains, your gut bacteria turn into their own Portland-style craft brewery...of butyrate.

Whole-fat dairy foods and dietary supplements can also supply butyrate to your gut.

Once your gut makes or consumes BTA, it creates a host of benefits for your body. Butyrate appears to have amazing anti-inflammatory properties, which in turn reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and possibly even Alzheimer's disease.

A Wide Spectrum of Health Benefits

Butyrate seems to also lower your risk for obesity, diabetes and colon cancer. It also helps explain why a fiber-rich diet has so many positive health effects.

In fact, the World Journal of Gastroenterology says research about butyrate suggests it has a lot of uses in medical science.

A Chance to Learn About Butyrate and More

Adventist Health registered dietician Risë Rafferty knows a lot about your gut. She also knows how butyrate and gut bacteria work for you and your health.

She also helps her patients know what bacteria strains are most helpful to people. "Daily I introduce my patients to aspects of their physiology, and even more specifically the community within, to help them see how simple choices can have significant life-influencing effects," Rafferty says.

Rafferty has also created a class for the public, "Butyrate, Bacteria and Your Gut," to help you learn more about how to turn your gut into a health-creating powerhouse. She will introduce you to how the bacterial world-and what we feed it-affects us on so many levels.

This exciting free class is coming up on March 21 at 11:30 a.m. You can register online or call 503-256-4000.