Beneficial SCFAs


A healthy result should fall into the range 13.6 - 150 micromol/g.

Short chain fatty acids are saturated fatty acids consisting of no more than 6 carbons. The most common forms—acetate, propionate, and butyrate—are also helpful for colon and overall health. Thus, they are called beneficial SCFAs. Beneficial SCFAs exert anti-inflammatory properties in the gastrointestinal tract. They help maintain a barrier in the intestine to prevent “leaky gut.” They also indirectly help people feel full, thus regulating appetite. Beneficial SCFAs are also important for maintaining levels of protective microbes in the gut and inhibiting pathogenic microorganisms. Each short chain fatty acid is measured separately in stool samples. In most cases, however, acetate, propionate, and butyrate are present in a predictable ratio, specifically 60:20:20.

Normal Ranges for beneficial SCFAs:

Analyte (µmol/g)


Mildly Decreased


Total SCFA

≤ 48.2


≥ 72.2


≤ 4.3


≥ 7.8


≤ 31.4


≥ 46.3


≤ 9.1


≥ 13.7



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