Rob Knight, a researcher from University of California. He is a recognized scientist in the field of gut microbiota.  He has written the book named “Follow your gut” in collaboration with the journalist Brendan Buhler. This book is based on his TED talk (2014) “How our microbes make us who we are”. It gives a general vision of the gut microbiota and current knowledge on it.

The author-researcher begins his book on a basic concept. He explains to us that the human being is not alone in his body. Indeed, it lives in symbiosis with innumerable microorganisms having “elected home in us and on us”, which together is known as the human microbiota. Human is made of several microbiota: intestinal, cutaneous, vaginal… But the author focuses more on the one housed in our intestines.

Then, Rob Knight also explains how microbes colonize our digestive tract from birth and how they develop to bring us all their benefits.

He discusses different notions about dysbiosis throughout his book:

  • its definition,
  • the factors responsible for it, including antibiotics,
  • as well as the consequences it may have on our health (for instance: obesity, gut-brain axis…).

Moreover, the author also teaches us how to modify and protect our gut microbiota. In this chapter, Rob Knight evokes fecal transplantation and probiotics and prebiotics intake.

He concludes his book on what the future holds for us. He explains the need to learn more about this microbial world that we house.

According to our opinion, this book is easy to read and educational. In short, you need little time to understand the basics to know about the microbiota and these billions of bacteria that populate us. Personal anecdotes and metaphors illustrate his remarks. In addition, the book also contains pictures, facilitating the understanding of certain information in a fun way.


Rob Knight, Brendon Buhler. Follow your gut. Simon & Schuster/TED, 2015.