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Uploaded on Nov 20, 2018
The gut microbiome is known to increase nutrition by digesting both fiber and phytates, yet surprising little is known about the microbes in fermented foods that have sustained humans for millennia. Dr. McKenney will outline a series of citizen science projects that she has helped launch to explore the microbial links between whole grains, microbial metabolism, and nutrition. DNA sequencing of over 560 starters from 17 countries first uncovered novel microbial diversity associated with sourdough. A subsequent high school culturing project revealed distinct bacterial and yeast membership associated with different types of flour, which likely contributes to sourdough diversity. Finally, middle school students grew sourdough starters from different types of flour, and compared microbial patterns of growth, acid, and aroma production. Together, the findings suggest that different whole grains contribute distinct nutrients and microbes to sourdough starters, which in turn shape the nutrition and aesthetics of bread.
Presenters: Dr. Erin McKenney, PhD, Postdoctoral Researcher, North Carolina State University
Recorded at the Whole Grains Conference, organized in November 2018 by Oldways and the Oldways Whole Grains Council.