Gut health and the nature of the human microbiome are undoubtedly among the hottest topics in modern nutrition.
In case you haven’t noticed via my recent writing and social media content, this trend certainly has caught my attention.
That’s exactly where today’s blog post, sponsored by Gut Armor®, comes into play.
Gut Armor® is a new product in this space that contains two components;
- Tributyrin – A “postbiotic” compound that delivers beneficial short chain fatty acids to the digestive tract (more on this soon)
- Vitamin D3 – No introduction needed here, but I’ll be exploring the role of Vitamin D3 in gut/immune health more closely soon.
If you know me, you know I don’t need to be asked twice to get involved with learning more about the emerging science in this realm.
And while I’m sure you’ve read all about Vitamin D3 before, you might be wondering what the heck Tributyrin is.
That’s what we are about to find out.
Tributyrin – A Look To The Future Of Gut Health?
Tributyrin is a naturally occurring compound which consists of three butyric acid molecules, where the tri comes from.
Butyric acid is a form of the short chain fatty acid (SCFA) butyrate, a beneficial compound that is created through the fermentation of prebiotic fibre in the human digestive tract by various types of healthy bacteria.
Usually when we think of SCFAs, we think about prebiotic fibre – which, as I mentioned, our gut bacteria ferment and produce these compounds from.
Tributyrin is considered a “postbiotic” because it delivers butyric acid directly to the digestive system.
Some of the potential benefits to an increased presence of SCFAs in the digestive tract include;
- Enhanced appetite regulation
- Improved metabolism of carbohydrates
- Correcting gut bacteria imbalance
- Improved immune health
- Improved nutrient absorption
- Improved gut health and gut resilience
Tributyrin has been a compound of interest in the scientific community for several decades and in September 2021 The Journal Of The Academy Of Nutrtition And Dietetics published the results of the first human pilot study conducted out of Georgia Southern University looking at the effects of 3-weeeks of oral tributyrin supplementation on the gut microbiome in healthy adults.
I should note that the amount of tributyrin used in this study is 300mg – slightly less than what a single capsule of Gut Armor provides (500mg).
The authors of this paper were primarily concerned with any potential alterations to the gut microbiome that might be induced by tributyrin supplementation.
The primary change that was noted during this trial was an increase in the abundance of bacteria from the Anaerostipes genus – which includes beneficial butyrate producing bacteria.
Although more research in this area will help draw a clearer picture, it is possible that postbiotics like tributyrin may increase the presence of butyrate in the digestive tract through multiple mechanisms.
Scientists fascination with this compound doesn’t stop there though.
Tributyrin, The Gut-Brain Connection & Parkinson’s Disease
I labelled the previous section “A Look To The Future Of Gut Health?” because that is the strong sense I get when I look into where research around this compound is headed.
That brings me to the much loved Gut-Brain connection.
Tributyrin is currently being studied as a supplement of interest in the management of Parkinson’s Disease (a brain disorder) in part because evidence has demonstrated those with Parkinson’s may have reduced SCFA levels in their gut microbiome which may in turn play a role in the disease progression.
The future will determine the role of tributyrin in the management of these and other conditions, but as it stands now I find the subject matter truly fascinating.
Learn More About Gut Armor
As mentioned at the outset, today’s content is sponsored by Gut Armor® who have also graciously offered a 10% discount using code Andy10.
If you’d like to learn more about the product I encourage you to click through the product image below (discount code already active via link).
Given that Gut Armor also contains Vitamin D3, I will be exploring the role of Vitamin D3 supplementation on immunity and the gut microbiome in my next piece of collaborative content.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration Or Health Canada.
This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Andy De Santis RD MPH