Using a Probiotic to Slim Down
Many people use a probiotic to slim down, and they have science to back them up. Studies not only show that probiotics help to improve the health of the digestive system, they can also help people lose belly fat. Here’s some information on how probiotics work, and why they could be a very effective component of your weight loss program.
How Probiotics Work
There are trillions of bacteria that live in the “gut,” which basically consists of the gastrointestinal tract. This includes the stomach, large and small intestines and much more. Some of the bacteria are good for us and help protect us from diseases, while others are harmful, causing a wide range of health issues. Probiotics help boost the numbers of beneficial bacteria in the gut so that the harmful ones don’t take over.
Good bacteria help break down substances that the body can’t digest on its own, including the short-chain fatty acid known as butyrate.1 Butyrate provides nourishment to the cells that line the intestines, keeping that lining strong so it can keep viruses and harmful bacteria from entering the digestive tract. Beneficial bacteria also provide several other important nutrients to the body, including many types of B-vitamins as well as vitamin K, which aids in blood coagulation.
The types of beneficial bacteria that appear to have the most impact on the regulation of weight are firmicutes and bacteroidetes.2 Research indicates that people who struggle with obesity have more firmicutes than bacteroidetes when compared to people who are of normal weight.3
Researchers aren’t certain as to exactly how a person can use a probiotic to slim down (You may visit probioticamercia.com to learn more about probiotic slim). One hypothesis that has gained a great deal of acceptance among the scientific community is that there are some probiotic products that can block the absorption of fat in the diet. As a result, this increases that amount of fat that is excreted through solid waste.4 For example, some forms of bacteria from the Lactobacillus strain are thought to help reduce the amount of calories that the body absorbs from food.5
But there are a few other ways that probiotics might be able to help people lose weight. One example is through stimulating production of the GLP-1 hormone, which promotes a feeling of fullness, and thus, reduces a person’s appetite. The more GLP-1 you have, studies indicate, the better you’ll be able to burn fat and calories.6 Probiotics are also thought to increase the levels of a protein known as ANGPTL4, which is responsible for decreasing the amount of fat that is stored in the body.7
Some researchers believe that one of the main causes of obesity is brain inflammation.8 Probiotics have been shown to help reduce inflammation, which, in turn, could help reduce the chances that someone will become obese.9 It’s very important to note, however, that research in this area is in its initial phases. Many more studies have to be performed before a definitive link between obesity and inflammation can be determined.
Lactobacillus Bacteria and Loss of Belly Fat
Repeated studies have shown that one form of beneficial bacteria in particular, the Lactobacillus family, can have a substantial impact on your ability to use a probiotic to slim down. One showed that people who consumed yogurt over a six-week period containing Lactobacillus fermentum and Lactobacillus amylovorus saw their amount of body fat reduced by between 3 and 4 percent.10
Another study analyzed the effectiveness of the Lactobacillus rhamnosus bacterium in helping people lose weight. Over a period of three months, one group of participants a group of overweight women who were on a diet consumed a probiotic containing the bacterium. Another group took a placebo. The women who took the probiotic lost 50 percent more weight than those who consumed the placebo.11
But Lactobacillus gasseri may be even more effective when it comes to weight loss. A Japanese study involved 210 participants who had an excess of belly fat. They took probiotics containing the bacterium for three months, and then researchers took measurements of their belly fat. On average, each participant lost 8.5 percent of belly fat. However, they gained back all of that fat within a month after stopping use of the probiotic.12
Prevention of Weight Gain
One of the best ways of fighting obesity is to avoid putting on the pounds in the first place. There are certain probiotics that show promise in helping prevent weight gain. Researchers analyzing the effect of probiotics on people who eat a high-calorie diet studied a group of study participants who typically followed a diet where they consumed an excessive amount of calories (approximately 1,000) per day. They gave the participants a probiotic over a four-week period and found that the participants had not only lost weight, but they also lost fat as well.13
While the results indicate that certain types of probiotics may do a better job at preventing weight gain in people who eat a high-calorie diet, a great deal more research needs to be performed before a definitive link can be established.
Not a “Magic Bullet”
Just about everyone who has ever struggled with his or her weight has, at one time or another, wished that there was some sort of magic pill that could help them shed pounds with little to no effort. Unfortunately, that pill has yet to be discovered.
Using a probiotic to slim down can help, as long as you realize it’s just one component of an effective, safe, overall weight loss plan. While evidence shows that certain strains of beneficial bacteria can help, you need to use them in conjunction with exercise and a healthy diet. Always speak with your doctor before you start any sort of diet or decide to start taking a probiotic supplement.