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Genelle Healey

Doctor of Philosophy
Study Completed: 2017
College of Health


Thesis Title
The Influence of habitual dietary intake on the responsiveness of the gut microbiota to a dietary intervention

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Gut microbiota modulation to enhance human health is an emerging concept which may help combat the rising prevalence of non-communicable disease. Presently, it is very difficult to predict how the gut microbiota will respond to a given dietary intervention. Previous research has demonstrated that large inter-individual variability in gut microbiota response may exist. However, most of these studies conducted post hoc analysis to demonstrate that baseline gut microbiota and habitual dietary intake help to predict gut microbiota responses. Prior to conducting this research no studies had been undertaken to determine what influence habitual dietary intake has on gut microbiota response to a dietary intervention. Mrs Healey’s research demonstrated that habitual dietary fibre intake influences gut microbiota response to an inulin-type fructan prebiotic. Therefore, future studies which aim to modulate the gut microbiota using an inulin-type fructan prebiotic should take habitual dietary fibre intake into consideration.

Professor Jane Coad
Dr Christine Butts
Dr Rinki Murphy
Dr Louise Brough