Microbiome Munchies

Dr. Shawn Talbott (Ph.D., CNS, LDN, FACSM, FACN, FAIS) has gone from triathlon struggler to gut-brain guru! With a Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry, he's on a mission to boost everyday human performance through the power of natural solutions and the gut-brain axis.



(KUTV) Salt Lake City – Are you feeding your microbiome right? Dr. Shawn Talbott, a nutritional biochemist, joined Brooke and Caitlin on Fresh Living to explain what a microbiome is and how to take care of it.

Dr. Talbott writes,

“Today, we’ll be talking about how we can improve both our mental wellness and our physical health by properly nourishing the bacteria in our guts – the microbiome. The microbiome is the collection of 100 trillion bacteria that live in our digestive system. They’re important for our health because they help us digest food, but they also produce a wide range of nutrients and other chemicals that help keep us healthy.

For example, the microbiome controls how our immune system works, it regulates how much inflammation we have in our body, and it produces neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine that help determine our mood. So, how do you keep those beneficial bacteria healthy? You feed them the right types of foods – and that means lots of fiber, protein and phytonutrients.

Unfortunately, these nutrients can often be bitter and not exactly delicious – so I have my two assistants here today – my daughter Courtney Talbott and her friend Jaclyn Optiz. They’re both nutrition students at CalPoly and they created these recipes (see below for recipes).

On Saturday December 30th, we’ll be speaking and giving a cooking demo on the topic of “Feeding Your Microbiome” at the Everything Nutrition Expo (aka FitCon) at the South Towne Expo Center in Sandy, Utah. It should be an absolutely packed day with classes, seminars, demos, and exhibitors from 10am-6pm – with our “Feeding Your Microbiome” seminar at 4pm.”

Microbiome Smoothies

Green Goddess

Makes 16 oz

½ Pear
½ Banana
¼ Avocado
1 C Kale
1 TBSP Almond butter
1 C Almond milk (or milk or your choice)
¼ C Rolled oats

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth! Add ice cubes or freeze some ingredients for a thicker smoothie.

Feel free to add all the ingredients except almond butter, milk, and oats to a freezer safe ziploc bag to make a ready to blend smoothie pack.

Raspberry Chia

Makes 16 oz

1 C Raspberries
1 Acai packet
¾ C Pomegranate juice
¼ C Almond milk (or milk of your choice)
3 TBSP Chia seeds

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth! Add ice cubes or freeze some ingredients for a thicker smoothie.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Dream

Makes 14 oz

½ Avocado
1 Banana
2 TBSP Peanut butter
2 TBSP Cocoa powder (unsweetened)
¼ C Rolled oats
2 TBSP Chickpea protein powder
¾ C Almond milk (or milk of your choice)

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth! Add ice cubes or freeze some ingredients for a thicker smoothie.

Microbiome Muffins

Spiced Carrot Cake Muffins

Makes 6 muffins

¼ C Applesauce
½ TBSP Vegetable oil
2 TBSP Granulated sugar
2 TBSP Light brown sugar
1 Egg
1 tsp Vanilla extract
¾ C Carrots, finely shredded
¼ tsp Salt
2 tsp Cinnamon
¼ tsp Nutmeg
Pinch Ground cloves
1 ½ tsp Baking powder
½ C Flour
¼ C Chickpea protein
¼ C Rolled oats
¼ C Walnuts, chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F) and grease or line a muffin tin.

Finely shred carrots and chop walnuts.

In a large bowl, beat together applesauce, vegetable oil, and sugars until combined. Add in egg and vanilla, followed by carrots.

Add the remaining dry ingredients, scraping the bowl as needed until no streaks remain.

Divide the mixture evenly between the tin.

Bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cool in the pan for 5 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container for up to several days.

About the Author

Exercise physiologist (MS, UMass Amherst) and Nutritional Biochemist (PhD, Rutgers) who studies how lifestyle influences our biochemistry, psychology and behavior - which kind of makes me a "Psycho-Nutritionist"?!?!

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