Diet has effects on behavior

According to a study, diet may be a new hope for treating many diseases.


They are many ways to affect our intestinal microbiota: taking prebiotics and probiotics, or changing our diet. That’s the principle behind the “The Gut Makeover” program, whose original goal was to enable participants to lose weight and resolve their digestive symptoms (diarrhea, constipation, bloating, etc.). For four weeks, participants restricted themselves to the following recommended diet: three daily meals composed of five portions of vegetables and two portions of fruit, with protein at each meal and no snacking. They were also advised to chew slowly and not to count calories. For the last two weeks, they added probiotic (kefir, sauerkraut, miso) and prebiotic foods (bananas, onions, garlic, etc.) to their diet and removed sugar, grains and dried pulses, alcohol, caffeine, and dairy products.

The diet met its goals in terms of weight loss and digestive symptoms, but there were also unexpected effects: improvement in mood (irritability, anxiety, depression), cognitive functions (memory, concentration), and sleep, as well as increased energy levels.

A diet capable of affecting the intestinal microbiota could play a role in preventing and treating various problems, ranging from irritable bowel syndrome to Alzheimer's disease and depression, the authors suggest. The study was published in PLoS One.


Lawrence K1, Hyde J2. Microbiome restoration diet improves digestion, cognition and physical and emotional wellbeing. PLoS One. 2017 Jun 14;12(6):e0179017. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0179017. eCollection 2017.