The Microbiome Diet is an eating strategy that has taken off in popularity and is expected to become even more commonplace this year. It was first created by Dr. Raphael Kellman. The idea is to avoid eating certain foods that are damaging to the good bacteria that live in your digestive tract.

By following the Microbiome Diet, the goal is to restore better gut health. So far, science has a very limited understanding of the microbiome in the digestive tract. That said, it is believed to play a critical role in many vital functions of the body. Moreover, it is integral to healthy digestion, nutrient absorption and even weight loss and mental health. Some even call the good bacteria and microorganisms in the digestive system a kind of second brain as its impact is as great as the brain itself.

What Does the Microbiome Diet Require?

There are three phases to following the Microbiome Diet. They are focused on using good gut health to make it easier to lose weight. Dr. Kellman is a board-certified physician with a specialty in digestive health.

There are trillions of different types of bacteria and other kinds of microorganisms found within the digestive system. Some are friendly, beneficial microscopic organisms. Others are harmful. The purpose of the Microbiome Diet is to eat foods that help to maintain the right balance between the beneficial organisms and those that are harmful. When this balance is established, digestion improves, inflammation decreases, anxiety and depression symptoms ease and brain function and mood are enhanced, according to the diet’s claims.

This is also supposed to shrink food cravings, boost the metabolism and make it easier overall to lose excess weight.

Three Phases of the Microbiome Diet

The first Phase is the Meal Plan containing the “Four Rs”. This part of the Microbiome Diet means you’ll help to boost prebiotics and probiotics in your diet to repair your gut lining. It involves Removing any toxins, chemicals and foods that lead to imbalances and inflammation such as antibiotics, some medications, hormones and pesticides. It also requires you to Repair your digestion with healing plant foods and supplements. You will use herbs, supplements and spices to Replace digestive enzymes and stomach acids that help digestion and your microbiome. Then you Reinoculate by using foods and supplements high in probiotics and prebiotics to repopulate with good bacteria.

The second phase focuses on boosting the metabolism and is more flexible, but still restrictive. It lasts 28 days and still follows about 90 percent of the rules from phase 1. Phase 3 is the “Lifetime Tune-Up” which is considered the maintenance phase. It is followed until the desired amount of weight is lost, then keeps things going over the long-term.