Diet-Microbe-Host Interactions That Affect Gut Mucosal Integrity and Infection Resistance.
The gastrointestinal tract microbiome plays a critical role in regulating host innate and adaptive immune responses against pathogenic bacteria. Disease associated dysbiosis and environmental induced insults, such as antibiotic treatments can lead to increased susceptibility to infection, particularly in a hospital setting. Dietary intervention is the greatest tool available to modify the microbiome and support pathogen resistance. Some dietary components can maintain a healthy disease resistant microbiome, whereas others can contribute to an imbalanced microbial population, impairing intestinal barrier function and immunity. Characterizing the effects of dietary components through the host-microbe axis as it relates to gastrointestinal health is vital to provide evidence-based dietary interventions to mitigate infections. This review will cover the effect of dietary components (carbohydrates, fiber, proteins, fats, polyphenolic compounds, vitamins, and minerals) on intestinal integrity and highlight their ability to modulate host-microbe interactions as to improve pathogen resistance.