STICKY Rules, info, submission guidelines, features

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Staff member
Jul 1, 2023
The primary goal of this website is to provide accurate information and debunk widespread misinformation.

Most of the internet is filled with random people stating opinions as fact, regurgitating hearsay as fact, citing their degrees/education as proof that they're right, and heavy marketing. These are all harmful behaviors that contribute to the spread of misinformation. And large social media sites are now becoming free-for-alls for scammers, bots, and disinformation.

We hope to encourage evidence-based discussion and be a hub of trustworthy information.

In order to squash misinformation and maintain a high standard of scientific, evidence-based discussion, we have some fairly strict guidelines and an extensive wiki. Members can help maintain these standards by using the report button, and by requesting that others provide citations for their claims. Do not take people at their word, whether they're claiming to be an expert or have X degree, or otherwise.

The microbiome is a rapidly growing area of research and has been linked to nearly every illness currently beyond medical capabilities. Causation is well-established in many cases. Join us if you want to keep up to date with how our microbiomes impact all areas of human health, and to see what implications it will have for you and for society.

People currently using Twitter and other social media are welcome to join us. I think the forum format allows for much higher quality and easier discussions. We can always add new sub-forums if necessary, such as for more technical microbiology discussion, bioinformatics, helminths, etc.


  1. Authoritative ignorance: If you are new to this forum please take some time to review the info in the wiki before contributing. This area of research is growing rapidly. If you do not follow the research closely, please refrain from making authoritative statements. We are here to learn and discuss, not to reinforce our preconceived notions.
  2. On-topic: If your discussion starts to go off-topic within the thread, you can continue it elsewhere and share a link to the continued discussion.
  3. Evidence-based: This is a science/evidence-based forum. Usage of scientific citations to support your claims is highly encouraged and may become mandatory. Citing your degree/education is almost never appropriate. If you contradict something in the wiki you need to provide citations.
  4. Opinions & anecdotes are fine to share, but they need to be clearly identified as "this was my personal experience" rather than "this is fact because it's what happened to me".
  5. No broad claims or accusations without any support. Address the specifics and provide citations, evidence, or quotes to support your arguments.
  6. Re "go ask a doctor". There are times when this is appropriate and times when it is not. In general, we are here to share evidence-based information, so "go ask someone else" isn't a useful contribution. Especially since most medical providers are not knowledgeable on the majority of information on this forum or wiki.
  7. Be civil & constructive. Engage in good faith. Trolls/agitators will be banned. Address the arguments, not the person. The subject of your sentence should be "the evidence" or "this source" or some other noun directly related to the topic of conversation. "You" statements are suspect.
  8. Quality: We don't want people to have to sift through low-quality content to find useful info. Please be hesitant to offer low-quality info/advice. Low-scientific-quality content may be removed.
  9. Check the wiki and use the search before asking or answering questions.
  10. No linking directly to Reddit. Reddit content is fleeting, and becoming more and more untrustworthy. We also don't want to be accused of brigading. You can archive the links with or and share the archived link.
  11. No requesting or offering stool/donors by individuals.
  12. No asking to PM/DM. This is a public forum. If something can't be said publicly it is probably not trustworthy. Public content allows others to learn and contribute.
  13. We're not your doctor. If you take things too far towards medical advice it will be removed.

Submission guidelines:​


  • Generally, titles should be the original title of the article/study/video, etc., and possibly a direct quote from it. If your submission is an article that covers a single study, please include the title of the study in your title if possible. It helps find previous submissions and prevent duplicates. When the study title isn't adequately descriptive, or when you're submitting an article that covers multiple studies, you can include the titles in the body of the post.
  • Study titles should include the month and year the study was published, and the model or "n=" where applicable. Eg: (Nov 2018, mice) or (Nov 2023, n=73).
  • Discussion titles should be descriptive and contain the keywords that would allow people to find your thread.


  • Links should be relevant and interesting to laypeople.
  • Please include the abstract, and any summaries & key points in the body of your post. It's encouraged to provide some commentary and/or quotes on the parts you feel are salient, and why you feel the link is worth sharing.
  • Please link directly to the source/study. Pubmed and should generally not be linked to. Linking to full-text articles on PMC is ok if there is an issue with the direct link.
  • Use clean URLs - no extra stuff after the main URL. Typically it would look like followed by ?campaign_id=6&emc=edit_nn_202235709&instance_id=93344&nl=theblabla.
  • Avoid link/URL shorteners and mobile links when possible.
  • Recency: You need to have a good reason for submitting old content. If you're submitting an older (more than 2-3 months) link please explain why in a comment. There is lots of new content published every day that would be drowned out by old submissions so you need to have a good reason. Most notable old ones are already in the wiki.
  • No articles covering unpublished studies. We need to be able to check the study to verify and analyze the information.
  • Animal studies with implications for humans are allowed.


We may encase certain claims in a spoiler tag if they need citations. Eg:
Fermented foods are the best way to recover the gut microbiome.
You're welcome to remove the spoiler tag if you add citations. Do not remove the tag without adding citations.


You can subscribe to/watch any subforum, IE: Studies, articles, videos, podcasts | Microbiome. This way you can ignore subforums/topics you're not interested in, such as Personal health & fitness discussion.

You can also use the What's new tab to check new content. Additionally, we have a once-per-week email that contains new posts and activity for the whole forum. You can change it to a daily email if you want.

Markdown formatting is enabled, but it's only partial - I'm not sure why.

This forum is running on Xenforo software, which is highly customizable and has lots of add-ons and styles. If you see something you like or want to contribute some code, feel free to share your suggestions.

For example, it's possible to have an optional Reddit-like threaded view capability. It has its pros and cons, and costs $30. Found a free addon that is similar but may have some bugs.

Another useful feature is this $35 "Similar Threads" addon, but it requires ElasticSearch, which can be a resource hog.

Shortening URLs:
If you want, you can shorten

There are a handful of customized styles that can be selected at the bottom left. There's a rate limitation on switching between them.

Signatures are limited to 1 line, but if a "click to expand" can be implemented then we can increase that.

You can use * as a wildcard in search. Eg: If you search probiotic it will NOT return results for probiotics. So you can use probiotic*.


If you don't visit (logged in) the forum for a few months you'll stop receiving email notifications automatically.

If your email bounces you are automatically unsubscribed.

Replying to old threads: I think it's good to keep everything in the same place instead of many duplicate threads. So replying to old threads is encouraged.


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