Should you go Vegan
for the sake of your Gut
Around 10 years ago, Neil Potts, co-founder of vegan diner The Vurger Co, was working long hours in a stressful job when he started getting stomach pains.
They came on once every few weeks, and lasted around 12 hours each time, for the next five years, but tests didn’t find anything more than a “slightly inflamed stomach”.
Then Potts went on holiday to LA for a few weeks, and found himself eating healthier. He didn’t have much meat or dairy, either, which had previously made up a large part of his diet. His stomach pains disappeared, and when he returned to the UK, Potts embarked on a vegan diet, avoiding all foods animal-derived food, including meat, fish, eggs, dairy and honey.
“Aside from my stomach pain going away, I also noticed a massive difference in my overall fitness,” Potts says on the first few months of going vegan.
“I’d never felt healthier, I had more energy and better skin, and I couldn’t put the changes down to anything else. And I’m really not a miracle-cure kind of guy.”
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Potts says the trip made him realise how much the food we eat can affect our guts. Of course, not everyone is intolerant to meat or dairy, but most of us have felt the effects our diet can have on our general wellbeing.
But our diet doesn’t just affect our guts in ways we can feel, as was the case with Potts. There is growing evidence it can also influence the structure and function of our microbiota, the trillions of bacteria living inside our guts, which can also impact our health. And some studies have found the vegan diet to be the healthiest.