The At-Home Test A Nurse Recommends For Optimizing Your Gut Health (+ What To Expect)


All microbiome testing companies, outside of Viome, are focused on microbial DNA and can tell you what organisms are in your gut. However, they do not tell you how these organisms are impacting your body. For example, the same organism can be beneficial in one person and harmful in another, depending on that individual’s unique gut ecosystem.

Unlike its competitors, Viome analyzes mRNA, instead of DNA, to determine the root cause of health issues (early signals), as opposed to simply identifying the symptoms. Messenger RNA (mRNA) is a transcription of someone’s DNA.

DNA remains the same throughout your life, which is why food recommendations based on DNA will never change—even if you gain weight or begin to develop a health condition. If your DNA never changes, what changes as you become sick? The answer is your RNA, or “gene expression.” Viome’s tests analyze gene expressions from your microbial and human cells, in order to provide you with insights and food and supplement recommendations that will help bring your body back into balance and keep you healthy.

As we look at all our picks for the best gut microbiome tests, Viome is our most-recommended option. However, the other tests offer different features that might be best for certain people.

Biome is an option for those who desire a live consultation to review results. For $180, users can connect with someone to ask clarifying questions and gain further insight into what their biomarker readings mean.

With Biome, your results reveal a gut health score from 1 to 10. Although straightforward and simple, it may not provide enough detail for some. Biome results can take 4 to 6 weeks, and only measures two biomarkers, bacteria and fungi, through a stool sample.

Retesting after making the recommended changes is imperative to ensure your dietary changes are helping. Floré, another microbiome test, has an option for a monthly $79 subscription, which includes a microbiome test every four months, along with a uniquely-formulated supplement shipped to your door. Floré also includes follow-up consultations with a “care scientist,” who will review the results after your test. Providing results in 1 to 3 weeks and testing for bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, and yeast, this all-inclusive option is ideal for someone who wants to test their gut health regularly.


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