Main Article Content
The composition and functions of gut microbiota that composed of microorganisms including bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa are effected by various factors such as mode of delivery, breastmilk, age, antibiotic use, and diet. Among these, diet is a manageable factor, therefore, it takes great attention. The fi rst dietary factor effects microbiota is breastfeeding, because it is well known that human milk oligosaccharides, lysosomes, lactoferrin, antibodies, and cytokines increase Bifi dobacterium counts. Following breastfeeding, foods chosen in weaning period and dietary pattern shapes microbiota. It is shown that microbiota reaches adult composition at about 2-3 years old and can change with short and long term regulations. The fi rst dietary factors that affect microbiota in adulthood are dietary carbohydrate (especially fi bre), protein and lipid content. It is shown that diets high in animal protein and saturated fats; low in fi bre and carbohydrates decrease gut microbiota richness and diversity and increase Firmicutes and Proteobacteria colonisation. High-fi bre and plant-based diets increase gut bacterial diversity as well as Prevotella and Xylanibacter species. Short chain fatty acids occur after fermentation of indigestible carbohydrates that also present prebiotic properties, are energy sources for gut bacteria as well as enhance health through anti-infl ammatory, anticarcinogenic and immune-modulatory impacts. Dietary alive probiotic microorganisms are as important as prebiotic content of diets for modulation of microbiota. At this point, potential benefi ts of fermented foods attract attention. Even if effects of diet on microbiota has begun to be understood, further research is needed to refl ect our knowledge to advice.