e-book The Importance of Immunonutrition (Nestlé Nutrition Institute Workshop Series)

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This book presents the latest findings on how nutrient status can modulate immunity and improve health conditions in pediatric patients. Divided into three parts, it covers major aspects of the interplay between nutrients and the regulation of immunity and inflammatory processes.

Part one deals with the pharmaceutical value of specific amino acids arginine and glutamine and hormones for addressing immune disorders and infant development. The second part revolves around gut function and immunity, and the right balance of probiotics. The final part explores the role of lipid mediators and how their types and proportions can tip the balance in favor of health and disease. Arginine and Asthma.


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Microbiota and ProPrebiotics. For an in-depth explanation of how gut microbiota impact our nutrition, read here. This means harboring a diverse community of good gut bugs and maintaining this microbial community. Power drops when gut dysbiosis i. These unavoidable stress factors impact the stability composition and function of gut microbiota 3 and, consequentially, gut health. This constant attack on the microbiota leads to microbial dysbiosis. For example, exposure to stress can lower gastric emptying and slow transit time in the small intestine.

Stressors lead to inflammation in the gut, which changes microbial communities for the worse. This creates a cascade effect, hurting nutrient digestion and absorption, immunity, and brain health. For a further understanding of inflammation and gut health, read here. Athletes always end training with an injury.

When we think of injuries, we tend to consider the superficial injuries that we see or feel—muscle soreness and bruising, for example. Deep within the body, however, exercise-induced cellular damage occurs every time an athlete trains or competes hard. Over time, this chronic injury indirectly hurts athletic performance. Exercise-induced cellular damage is a consequence of different, unavoidable physiological stressors. Examples include: 7. This injury is quite common. These inevitable stressors initiate at the protective, one-cell thick barrier of the gut.

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They cause intestinal cell damage by increasing gut permeability, which opens the door wide open for bad bacteria to enter the bloodstream. If this leaky gut exacerbates, then pro-inflammatory bacterial endotoxemia results in much more serious problems due to immunosuppression. This increases pro-inflammatory markers, cortisol, heart rate, and body temperature. We believe this results from endotoxemia, which releases inflammatory markers. A consistently reported effect of endotoxin on sleep is its suppression of REM sleep, which increases wakefulness and amount of time it takes to go to sleep.

Does this mean the sleep practices at the pro level are fruitless?

Not necessarily. Essentially, exercise-induced stress can weaken the GI barrier and allow bad bacteria to enter the bloodstream, which leads to GI consequences, hydration imbalance, poor absorption of nutrients and electrolytes, and thermal damage to the intestine.

What is new with the brain and docosanoids?

The result is a subsequent drop in athletic performance. The immunological aspect of sports nutrition is often forgotten. Immunonutrition via gut microbiota can alleviate the increase in oxidative stress, intestinal permeability, muscle damage, and inflammatory response by strengthening the intestinal barrier.

Superior Gut Health Translates to Athletic Power

For a further explanation of how the gut strengthens immunity, read here. A weakened immunity opens a wide window of opportunity for illness and a huge cost to training preparation and performance. Common risk factors for athletes include:. Collectively, these are stressors. A study investigated illness risk factors in athletes nine months before the Rio Olympic Games.

Because Aquatics has the second largest number of participating athletes at the Olympics, another study investigated the prevalence of illnesses four weeks before, and the incidence of illnesses during, the FINA World Championships. Results included:. This has many implications, including increasing the severity of the illness and lowering the quality of performance. This type of surveillance system— reporting the incidence of illness to identify risk factors—is also gaining momentum in professional tennis. The goal of identifying risk factors is to modify risks to prevent the consequential time loss due to illness.

Immunonutrition comes into play here. The imbalance between training and recovery could increase the risk for illness. A systematic review found moderate evidence of a link between training load applied to an athlete and the occurrence of illness. The researchers, however, cautioned that a latent period exists between training load and the onset of an illness. For example, when an athlete experiences a rapid increase in training load, health consequences may not result until weeks after the loading.

And this must be a habitual practice. The goal is to alleviate the severity of the exercise-induced immunodepression phase. This is where nutrition goes beyond fueling the athlete toward designing a gut-enhancing diet. Gut microbiota, through crosstalk between the brain and gut microbiome, can influence all parts of physiology, including gut-brain communication, brain function, and behavior. The brain-gut axis is a perfect example of bidirectional signaling between two organs—the autonomic nervous system and enteric nervous system ENS in the GI tract. Gut microbiota can produce neurotransmitters found in the brain, such as serotonin, GABA, noradrenaline, and dopamine.

The brain is also dependent on gut microbes for metabolic products that regulate the brain and behavior. SCFAs are the end products when microbiota ferment complex carbohydrates. Also, cytokines produced in the gut can reach the brain. And the gut microbiota can change the concentration of circulating cytokines, which can impact brain function.

The hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal HPA is the core regulator for the stress response, which releases stress hormones norepinephrine, epinephrine and glucocorticoids cortisol. Cortisol, the most powerful stress system activator, can not only negatively impact immune cells in the gut by increasing gut permeability and lowering barrier function but also immune cells throughout the body.

Microbiota may control the HPA axis in athletes, and therefore, control hormone release from exercise-induced stress.

Changes in arginine metabolism during sepsis and critical illness in children.

This is critical because the HPA axis has a major influence on the brain-gut axis. Psychological or physical stress can dysregulate the HPA axis, which then dysregulates the brain-gut-microbiota axis. The HPA system is critical to balancing the sleep-wake cycle because of its sleep-related hormones. For example, the central fatigue hypothesis states that serotonin release is associated with sleep, drowsiness, and central fatigue. This latest study discusses how gut microbiota influence serotonin. Performance is typically defined as goal-directed behavior requiring mental effort.

Sleep deprivation that lowers cognitive function lowers reaction time and execution and overall power potential. Fatigue and mood disturbances a critical performance factor are common among athletes. These include irritability, anxiety, lack of motivation, poor concentration, and depression. A study found that supplementing Lactobacillus helviticus and Bifidobacterium longum reduced psychological distress and lowered cortisol levels in humans.

Another study found that a multi-species probiotic treatment significantly lowered negative thoughts linked with sad moods. Specifically, polyphenols in the diet can stimulate neurogenesis and improve memory, learning, and cognition.

77th Nestlé Nutrition Institute Workshop: The Importance of Immunonutrition

The cognitive part of sports nutrition must consider exercise-induced psychological stress and its impact on gut microbiota. Normalizing the gut microbiota may help adult neurogenesis 28 which is sensitive to stress. This is important for learning and memory. The link between brain plasticity and the gut microbiome is a new avenue of research. For example, the gut microbiome is pivotal for the maturation of microglial cells, which are important in neuronal transmission and plasticity the optimal wiring of neuronal circuits.

Essentially, a healthy gut is critical to maintaining good communication along the brain-gut axis that leads to a healthy status. Stress on the central nervous system can affect gut function and lead to microbial dysbiosis. A gut-enhancing diet can be a type of nutritional psychiatry that can prevent the dysregulation affecting the brain.

follow url Training the gut is a new sports nutrition paradigm where nutritional strategies, specifically carbohydrates and fluids, are used to induce adaptations in the GI to mitigate GI stress and improve performance. This paradigm shows diet can impact the GI through adaptations. A nutritional intervention that maintains the gut, however, is another lens to look through when training the gut. Athletes already have an advantage because those who exercise tend to have a healthier profile of good gut bugs—a diverse microbiota with favorable metabolic and inflammatory profiles.

Probiotics are an ideal therapeutic approach to optimize the gut because they interact directly with microbiota. Of course, the microbe-human relationship is highly complex. There are no established dietary recommendations for probiotic supplementation for athletes, 26 and there are only a small number of studies exploring this topic. Not all probiotics are the same—clear communication is pivotal to differentiate products. Key points to consider are:. Also, a symbiotic product that combines prebiotics and probiotics is critical because prebiotics feed the probiotics and can enhance the anti-inflammatory benefits.

The next level of fueling focuses on a gut-enhancing diet. Food impacts our gut microbial composition and function. Superior gut health is a marginal gain that is pivotal to elite sport.