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Researchers at Tecnun University of Navarra create an algorithm that generates a ranking of the healthiest foods for each person according to their microbiota.

The results of the European project Stance4Health, involving 19 partners from 8 countries, were presented at the School of Engineering.

21 | 04 | 2023

Researchers from Tecnunthe School of Engineering of the University of Navarra, have created an algorithm that generates a ranking of the healthiest foods for each person taking into account their intestinal microbiota and metagenomic data. This was explained by Full Professor Francisco Planes during the presentation of the results of the European project Stance4Health, in which the company participates with 18 partners. Tecnun together with 18 partners.

The project, which ends on June 30, materializes in the only personalized nutrition tool that, to date, integrates the intestinal microbiota, as revealed by the School's main researcher , Francisco Planes. "We have created an algorithm that creates a ranking of the healthiest foods for each individual taking into account their gut microbiota and metagenomics data," said Planes, Full Professor in Artificial Intelligence.  

Thanks to this tool , nutritional recommendations have been made to 800 people with pathologies such as obesity, celiac disease and allergies in Greece, Germany and Spain. "At the moment, a nutritional follow-up is being done analyzing the impact that personalized nutrition is having on their intestinal microbiota, mood or sleep quality", highlighted Verónica González, partner-director of i-Dietthe company that owns this application in which project Stance4Health has materialized.  

The presentation included a meeting on the relationship between microbiota, the per diem expenses and technology with the participation of the Full Professor of Microbiology of the University of Navarra, Ignacio López Goñi, the head of research and development of Mugaritz, Ramón Perisé, and the partner- director of the company i-Diet Verónica González.  


"Gut microbiota is very different between people and varies throughout life. There is no perfect one, but the more abundant it is in microorganisms and the more diverse they are, the healthier it is. And this has to do with diets that provide us with micronutrients," said Full Professor Ignacio López Goñi. "Some people are very concerned about calories and what this tool gives you is the nutritional value of food. Food matrices are determinant for our diet and our microbiota," he said. And he added: "These billions of microorganisms housed in our intestine have a nutritional function and another one that has to do with immunity, because it trains the immune system since we are small by stimulating the production of antibodies".

"Research on the microbiota began more than 400 years ago. The breakthrough is the impact of technology because the intestinal microbiota is extremely complex and the support of engineering and data science is needed," said Planes.

The head of research and development at Mugaritz, Ramón Perisé, related the importance of nutrition in elite athletes: "We are seeing the impact of the intestinal microbiota on the mental and physiological state of athletes".

Session on microbiota

It should be noted that the project Stance4Health, coordinated by the University of Granada, is made up of 19 partners from 8 European countries, with different knowledge and transdisciplinary skills: academics from universities and hospitals, researchers from technology centers, 6 SMEs in the field of food production, diagnostics, development software or communication and dissemination.

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