It has always been known that pre and probiotics have massive heath benefits but new research is proving that even weight loss may be connected to good gut flora. A recent TV documentary on Doctor In The House revealed that obesity is closley associated with fibre and probiotics .
The Diet-Bacteria-Weight Connection
Bacterial imbalance in your gut can be made worse by processed foods and foods that have been pasteurized or sterilized. Other factors affecting your gut flora include where you live, your age, your stress level, and any health issues you may have. Like processed foods, sugar also promotes the growth of disease-causing yeasts and fungi.
Symptoms of a yeast (candida) overgrowth include fatigue, depression, irritability, headaches, problems concentrating, muscle weakness, recurrent vaginal and urinary tract infections, athlete’s foot, jock itch, persistent heartburn, indigestion, constipation, swollen joints, nasal congestion, and sore throat.1
In case you don’t have reason enough yet to re-evaluate your sugar and fructose intake, here’s another twist in the sugar-obesity connection: researchers have discovered a difference in gut bacteria between the overweight and those of normal weight.2
In the obese, a bacterial strain known as firmicutes is found in much greater abundance than in leaner individuals. In those of normal weight, the bacteroidetes strain is in greater supply.
Certain bacteria appear to be much better than others at turning calories from complex sugars into fat. As those who are overweight begin to slim down. Research published discovered that as much as 20 percent of the substantial weight loss achieved from gastric bypass, a popular weight loss surgery, is actually due to shifts in the balance of bacteria in your digestive tract.3
Bacteria Can Affect Your Food Cravings, and Weight Loss Success
According to the most recent study, a strain of friendly bacteria called Lactobacillus rhamnosus also appears to be quite helpful for weight loss in women.4 As reported in the featured article:
“The controlled clinical trial was set up so that the first 12 weeks women were guided to eat less food and some were additionally given the Lactobacillus rhamnosus. After 12 weeks the amount of weight loss was greater in the group receiving the friendly flora supplement.
Over the next 12 weeks the dietary restrictions were lifted, and the friendly flora was continued. Those women not taking Lactobacillus rhamnosus now gained weight, whereas the friendly flora group continued to lose weight. The weight loss benefit was linked to measurements of the bacterial profile of the digestive tract. This study is the latest to show that the balance of power in the digestive tract is a metabolic variable of high importance and nothing to ignore as part of a long-term successful weight loss plan.”
As it relates to weight management, one hypothesis states that your gut bacteria may in fact be in control of your appetite. Recent research5 suggests there’s a positive-feedback loop between the foods you crave and the composition of the microbiota in your gut that depend on those nutrients for their survival. Microbes that thrive on sugar, for example, can signal your brain to eat more sweets.
Yet another recent study revealed that a breath test of the gases given off by your gut bacteria might actually be able to predict your likelihood of becoming obese. The study found that people with high levels of hydrogen and methane in their breath are more likely to have a higher body-mass index (BMI) and proportion of body fat.10 This, the researchers believe, may be because the related gut bacteria influence your body’s ability to extract calories from food, leading to weight gain.