The Youthful Body

Best tip for weight Loss: Take Care of Your Gut Bacteria

A Microbiome is a community of microorganisms symbiotically living in all parts of our body especially our gut. Your microbiome is like your personal history file – so uniquely yours like a personal fingerprint. Your gut bacteria knows all your health secrets, past and present and might even have an idea about the future health […]

Best tip for weight Loss: Take Care of Your Gut Bacteria

A Microbiome is a community of microorganisms symbiotically living in all parts of our body especially our gut. Your microbiome is like your personal history file – so uniquely yours like a personal fingerprint. Your gut bacteria knows all your health secrets, past and present and might even have an idea about the future health of your body.
Your gut microbiome is like a second brain. Your emotional well-being and mental health largely depends on how “happy” your gut is. Likewise, your immune and nervous systems are greatly influenced by your gut bacterial activity. Diseases like obesity and cancer can be determined just by checking out gut activity.

Intestinal bacteria causes Food Cravings

The ratio of bacteria to cells in your body is 100 to 1, and each bacteria’s nutritional needs should be met.    

Your bacteria can “decide” on when you should eat by sending a message to your brain directly through the vagus nerve. Dr Carlo Maley PhD says “Bacteria within the gut are manipulative. There is a diversity of interests represented in the microbiome, some aligned with our own dietary goals, and others not.”  He further stated that  “Our diet has a huge impact on microbial populations in the gut. It’s a whole ecosystem, and it’s evolving on the time scale of minutes.”

A difference in the gut bacteria between obese and lean individuals was previously recorded. The research also stated that irregularities in the balance of bacteria in the digestive tract can cause weight. Athena Aktipis PhD also mentioned that Microbes can influence behavior and mood by changing neural signs in the vagus nerve. Our taste receptors are then altered as it would create chemical rewards for us to feel good or toxins to make us feel otherwise.

So wait a minute, our bacteria influences:

  • our mood
  • Our weight
  • Our Behaviour
  • And overall well-being!

That’s right,  and this might be the reason your gut bacteria shall be taken cared of first and foremost.

It also means that before even trying to lose weight, your gut bacteria should be considered. If you are among the individuals undergoing countless numbers of diets and for whom weight loss just does not happen or if your weight does not seem to relate to what you are actually eating, maybe you should look at the issue from another angle and address your gut bacteria.

 Diet can change your Gut bacteria fast!

A study was conducted at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on how fast a person can change the balance of gut bacteria in the body. The study was tested for a year on two people. Daily activities like sleep, food intake and exercise and mood were reported.

Diarrhea was reported by one of the subjects during a 14-day trip to another country. It resulted in irregularities in balance of gut bacteria.

The other person in the study had Salmonella which altered his gut bacteria activity. Salmonella bacteria dominated the beneficial bacteria by 30%. Eventually the good bacteria revived itself to about 40% but  altering its strain in the process. Eric Alm, senior author of the study explains it this way: “On any given day, the amount of one species could change manyfold, but after a year, that species would still be at the same median level. To a large extent, the main factor we found that explained a lot of that variance was the diet.”

Fiber intake recorded the highest gut bacteria change. People consuming large amounts of fiber notice a significant change in their digestive system.

Gut Bacteria as an indicator of certain cancers

Colon cancer may be detected just by examining your gut bacteria. A colon cancer study was conducted where the participants were divided into three groups of thirty individuals. The first group had colon or rectal cancer, the second group precancerous intestinal polys and the third group were healthy. Individual fecal tests will check the microbiomes for precancerous polyps and colorectal cancer.

Results showed that microbiome analysis is 4.5 to 5 times more accurate indicator to predict cancer. Gut microbes can also be a trigger or a cure for MS (Multiple Sclerosis). A paper published by The Journal of Interferon and Cytokine Research introduced the immunological components related to the gut microbiome that points to illness in MS patients:

  1. T helper cell polarization
  2. T regulatory cell function
  3.  B cell activity.

Adding bacteria like Lactobacillus, Schistosoma and Trichura (worm-type organism) to alter gut microbiome will be very helpful to lessen MS symptoms. According to research, these microorganisms can eliminate infection in the body through their positive effect on cytokine production. Cytokines are important for “cell communication”: the behavior of cells with each other.

 Microbiomes impact on Inflammation

A person’s gut is THE main starting point of inflammation. The vagus nerve ( a long branch of nerve from your skull to your chest and stomach and then to other organs in your body) serves as the communication link between your gut, brain and eventually to your body’s organs.
Cytokine messengers travel the “vagus nerve communication highway” from the gut all the way to the brain to inform the microglia (immune cells in your brain) to act out certain operations, like producing neurochemicals. These cytokine messengers can also influence your feedback system that controls your hormones and hunger and cravings symptoms.
To sum things up, inflammatory messages can begin and travel from your gut to your brain and then from there sends the proper signals to the rest of your organs and back. Your Gut health, therefore, controls the well-being of your entire body.

 Protecting your Gut Flora

You already know that everything in your life affects your microbiomes and therefore affects you physically and mentally.  Any harmful effect on your gut bacteria can alter your health.  Below are things to avoid to protect your gut health:

Refined sugar, HFCS (high fructose corn syrup); Genetically engineered foods,  food that are treated with agricultural chemicals like herbicides, pesticides and glyphosate  their toxicity contaminates your gut bacteria.

Conventionally raised meats and other products – chemicals are a main part of their feeds.

Gluten – may decrease your ability to absorb nutrients.

Antibiotics, NSAIDS non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs and proton pump inhibitors  –  reduces “good ” gut bacteria, may induce ulcers and reduce stomach acid which leads to less calcium absorption.

Anti bacterial soap – contains chemicals that can affect gut’s flora.

Chlorinated and/or fluoridated watermay kill the gut flora.

Stress and Pollution – they make your brain produce hormones that can alter your digestive system and can have damaging effects on gut’s flora.

 The Best Diet for your microbiome

  • An article in The Journal of Physiological Anthropology featured an article  stating that food nutrients are intensified in properly fermented food, which  are extremely beneficial for gut health.  Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria species found in kefir,  Korean Kimchi (fermented vegetables with peppers) and sauerkraut aid in digestion and seal in the “good bacteria” in your gut.
  • Kefir is a wonderful natural way of boosting healthy bacteria within your gut.
  • Go for natural, organic, unprocessed and sugar-free food: basically the healthy diet advocate in the magazine.
  • Avoid synthetic ingredients, GMO’s, pesticide ridden vegetables and canned food.  These are full of chemicals that alters your gut fauna in the worst possible way, which could lead to numerous acute and chronic diseases.
  • Twice a year take a course high quality probiotics including Lactobacilli, Saccharomyces boulder, Bifidobacteria,  and non-disease causing strains of Escheridia coli and streptococci, this may prove particularly useful when travelling abroad. You might not need this if you have kefir or fermented food on a regular basis.

 Your Body and its “good bacteria”

Good physical and mental health is an indicator of your healthy microbiome.

A perfectly balanced body’s ecosystem consists of a symbiotic relationship between humans and microorganisms.  Factors like diet and healthy lifestyle contribute to its positive function.  Your microbiome should be well taken cared of because if you neglect it, your health shall pay for the consequences.     





New York Times,  August 14, 2014

Forbes August 17, 2014

Science of Translational Medicine 2013 Mar 27;5(178):178ra41

Genome Biology 2014, 15:R89

WebMD July 25, 2014

Cancer Prevention Research August 7, 2014

Journal of Interferon and Cytokine Research August 1, 2014

American Journal of Physiology December 2002

J Physiol Anthropol January 15, 2014

Experience Life June 2013





















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Aude Seynt Martin

Written by Aude Seynt Martin

Aude is an ex corporate Lawyer with a passion for health, self development and independence which lead her to give up her former career to help others through health.

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