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Your one-stop shop for everything you need to know about gut health

HELLO we are the Mac Twins, Alana and Lisa Macfarlane. And yes, we are identical twins. By night we are DJs - you might recognise us as the official DJs for Love Island - but by day, we have another passion:  gut health.

We know - talkin’ about the gut ain’t sexy. Just googling it brings up a rather disturbing mosaic of beer bellies, intestinal diagrams and (a major reason for our misconception with the word gut health) perfectly manicured hands cupping toned, soft stomachs. It’s no wonder we’re all confused.

But understanding your gut is important. Like, seriously important. One in 3 of us have digestive issues at any given time yet we’d rather talk about ANYTHING other than what’s going on with our gurgling midriffs and toilet dashing. We are on a mission to change that so from this sentence on, this is where that STOPS.


WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT GUT HEALTH

Alana and I don’t claim to be scientists or nutritionists BUT we’ve become experts by default. We’ve always been fascinated by food but growing up in Scotland, eating deep fried pizzas and chips (plus all of Edinburgh's supply of Greggs’ Yum Yums), we only knew what kale was because we used to give it to the guinea pig on his birthday. But that all dramatically changed when we volunteered for TwinsUK research at King’s College London.

Being identical twin sisters, we have a passion (teetering on obsession) for finding out what’s different about us and to do this we had to look inside because there ain’t much that looks different on the outside. Twins are a great constant for medical research and we became the “chief guinea pigs” for the British Gut Project where we discovered that despite us having 100 per cent the same DNA our guts have only 30 to 40 per cent of the same microbiota. That could explain why our bodies behave so differently. Thus our “gut journey” began.




GUT INSTINCT

We are all familiar with "gut feelings" but how many of us understand what’s actually going on inside our guts? Microbiologists are making startling advances in our understanding of the complex ecosystem deep within us, the microbiome, which contains about 100 trillion organisms and weighs roughly 2kg. For years, we weren’t sure what its purpose was but now scientists are classing it as an organ in its own right and recognising the impact the microbiome has on our health.

Not only are our day-to-day lives dictated by our digestive health, with 1 in 5 people needing to take time off work due to their symptoms, but what we eat can have repercussions for our children and our grandchildren. So we need to start tuning in and listening to our second brain, our partner in crime: our gut.


I ‘GUTTA’ KNOW

All this research is so new and literally just coming into public consciousness. We’ve been spending the past year interviewing tons of top notch “gut pros”: scientists, academics, chefs and foodies to get the real scoop and science behind what we eat. What really surprised us was how much is going on in the ivory towers of academia and science research AND NONE OF US KNOW ABOUT IT. These guys are realising just how important the gut is to our immune system and what impact it has on diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and even our mental health. Yet the information doesn’t necessarily trickle down to us mere mortals…Until now.


THE GUT STUFF: THE BOOK

When we were working out what kind of a book we wanted to make, we knew that we didn't want to make another shiny coffee-table recipe book. We wanted to create something that you would actually use and that would help you make a difference to your gut health. We wanted to democratise all the reseach we've been reading and get it out there so that everyone can understand it and use it. And we want you guys to be involved from the start. 

So The Gut Stuff isn’t an ordinary gut-health book -- there are already plenty of those about. We've created a Filofax packed with information, journaling sections and stickers, as well as space for loads of add-in sections so that you can personalise the experience.

Each colourful copy of The Gut Stuff will include

  • A Gut Health 101: a need-to-know section on gut health that will arm you with the latest research and the facts you need to impress everyone at dinner
  • A twelve-week food diary with stickers
  • Short guides to making gut-friendly food 

And the bumper packs cover subjects from mindfulness to how to make your own kefir or kimchi.

Everyone’s book will be different because if we as identical twins can’t be sold the same thing, then neither can you.

But we need your help: we need to hit 100 per cent of our funding target before we can make the book so please pledge now for your copy and be part of the journey with us.

The design of the book and Filofax is not final

The Mac Twins are Alana and Lisa Macfarlane. They have performed as DJs all over the world at festivals, for the UK's biggest music institution The Official Charts and for brands such as Diet Coke, Armani and MAC Cosmetics.

As well as being the Official DJs for Love Island, they have hosted a slot on Virgin Radio for the past year and they have appeared on live broadcasts from The Brits and to the Team GB camp.

They are the "go to" DJ's and hosts for big crowds and Expos and have recently played at the UEFA Champions League Final party, at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, played for Simon Cowell at his annual Annual Midsummer Ball, The Body Power Expo, Stylist Live and The London Marathon expo and headlined at Edinburgh's Hogmanay Street Party in front of 75,000 people.

Twins are a great constant for medical research, and Alana and Lisa whilst DJing by night became the “chief guinea pigs” by day for Tim Spector at TwinsUK research at King’s College London where they discovered that despite having 100 per cent of the same DNA their guts have only around 30 to 40 per cent of the same microbiota, which could explain why their bodies behave so differently. Thus their "gut journey" began.    

www.thegutstuff.com is now globally recognised as the "gut health" brand offering experiences and resources about the latest research in a digestible way.  

The Gut Stuff is their first book.

It looks like Lisa Macfarlane and Alana Macfarlane have not made any updates yet. Check back soon!

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