Microbiote intestinal et sport

Gut microbiota and sport

What is the microbiota?


According to the INRAE (National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment), the microbiota represents all living microorganisms in the body, consisting mainly of bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses.

Each individual has its own microbiota. The microbiota is evolutionary and will depend on several factors (environment, diet, lifestyle, etc.).


There are many microbiota especially in the mouth, lungs, intestine or skin. The most studied microbiota today is the gut microbiota. It is involved in several functions of the body. Indeed, it will play a role in the nervous, metabolic and immune functions of the body. It also plays a key role in digestive functions, especially in the metabolism of digestion, for example by causing the fermentation of non-digestible substrates such as fiber.


When the microbiota is qualitatively and quantitatively unbalanced, disorders and pathologies may appear. This imbalance is called dysbiosis.


Link between gut microbiota and sport


It is known that the gut microbiota of athletes is different from that of sedentary people. Physical activity would increase the diversity and richness of the gut microbiota.


Thus, the practice of physical activity would have a positive impact on health by promoting the bacterial composition of the intestinal microbial.


Gut microbiota and sports performance


The gut microbiota may influence athletic performance. The microbiota plays a role in inflammation. However, inflammation is an element that can impair sports performance by slowing recovery.


Finally, it has recently been shown that the gut microbiota and the brain could «communicate» thanks to the gut-brain axis, and particularly the vagus nerve. Thus, dysbiosis or an unbalanced microbiota could be the cause of anxiety or depression.

A healthy microbiota would therefore have a role to play in our mental health. Thus, in athletes, this could be a real support point for mental strength and mental endurance.


In summary,


For an optimal gut microbiota, it is necessary to have a balanced diet providing good nutrients and to practice regular physical activity.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.