Gut microbiota during dietary restrictions: New insights in non-communicable diseases

Emanuele Rinninella, Marco Cintoni, Pauline Raoul, Gianluca Ianiro, Lucrezia Laterza, Loris Riccardo Lopetuso, Francesca Romana Ponziani, Antonio Gasbarrini, Maria Cristina Mele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


In recent decades, there has been a growing interest in dietary restrictions for their promising effects on longevity and health span. Indeed, these strategies are supposed to delay the onset and burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as obesity, diabetes, cancer and neurological and gastrointestinal inflammatory diseases. At the same time, the gut microbiota has been shown to play a crucial role in NCDs since it is actively involved in maintaining gut homeostasis through its impact on nutrients metabolism, gut barrier, and immune system. There is evidence that dietary restrictions could slow down age-related changes in the types and numbers of gut bacteria, which may counteract gut dysbiosis. The beneficial effects on gut microbiota may positively influence host metabolism, gut barrier permeability, and brain functions, and subsequently, postpone the onset of NCDs prolonging the health span. These new insights could lead to the development of novel strategies for modulating gut microbiota with the end goal of treating/preventing NCDs. This review provides an overview of animal and human studies focusing on gut microbiota variations during different types of dietary restriction, in order to highlight the close relationship between gut microbiota balance and the host’s health benefits induced by these nutritional regimens.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Aging
  • Caloric restriction
  • Fasting-mimicking diet
  • Gut microbiota
  • Intermittent fasting
  • Non-communicable diseases


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