Microbiome Books: My Top Picks

by | Apr 20, 2021 |

I’m obsessed with the microbiome. I love pondering the notion of what it means to be human, armed with the knowledge that not only are we made of ‘body’ cells, but microbial ones too. What really captivates me, however, is the relationship we have with these creatures living inside of us: the mutual benefits we share, the teamwork that ensues, the one-sided gains and the inevitable discord that can result from cohabiting with another being.

Wanting to learn more about this exciting new world, I ordered myself a number of books about the microbiome, an area of non-fiction that has escalated over the past few years.

The following are a few of my favourite reads so far.


Missing Microbes: How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues – Martin Blaser

Life isn’t what it used to be. With the introduction of modern medical marvels such as caesarian sections, baby formula, and antibiotics, the harmonious relationship we share with our microbes has been disrupted to a degree never experienced before.

Dr Martin Blaser discusses how these ecological changes have profoundly altered the transmission and maintenance of our microbiota and how as a result, human physiology has been affected, with a knock-on effect on disease risk. 



Gut: The Inside Story of Our Body’s Most Underrated Organ – Giulia Endere

What is the gut and what exactly does it do? Giulia Endere introduces this vital and quite frankly badass part of our body in a humorous and accessible way that makes it easier to understand its complex inner workings.

Along with the ins and outs of the digestive system, she also delves into the gut-brain axis and the research behind gut bacteria and the role they play in health issues such as obesity, allergies and Alzheimers. This book shows us that the gut is more charming than taboo and is something to be celebrated: a group of organs that enables us to thrive. 



The Psychobiotic Revolution by Scott C. Anderson

Studies have shown there exist pathways between the brain and the gut collectively referred to as the gut-brain axis. Connected via hormonal, neural and immune pathways, the transfer of information between the gut and the brain is bidirectional. Its dysfunction has been implicated in a number of health disorders including depression, anxiety, obesity and heart disease.

Scott Anderson takes us on a deep dive into the relationship between our gut microbes and our brain, and the ways in which they influence our mood and our general health. The book also shows readers how to care for your intestinal microbiome in order to potentially change your mood and improve your life.



Eat To Beat Disease by Dr William Li

The ‘let food be thy medicine’ doctrine is contentious, so when I saw the title of this book I wasn’t sure how it would read. Whilst I can’t attest to the scientific accuracy of Dr Wiliam’s claims that food has the power to beat disease by allowing the body to heal itself, I do know that I found this book captivating for its avid descriptions of our body’s defense systems (including the microbiome), how our health suffers when these systems fail, and suggestions of the types of foods we can eat to support these vital systems.

Eat to Beat Disease highlights the ways in which we can use food to boost our own defense systems so the body will heal itself. None of us know if we’ll live to be a centenarian, but according to Dr William, what we eat can help tip the odds in our favour.





DISCLAIMER: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to constitute or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. 


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