Probiotics for Weight Control?

Posted by Alexander Harper on


As a clinical practitioner I knew of the benefits of good bacteria such as Acidophilus and Bifidus and pathogenic bacteria that cause disease. Bacterial balance of gut species weren’t necessarily taught or understood as it is today. But when first introduced to new beneficial strains of probiotics called “Lactobacillus Salvarius and Plantadophilus” by a friend of mine, Michael O’Brien, I began to be excited. Beginning in 1990 I formulated probiotic strains along with the supplemental enzymes for my clinic. Probiotics strains have been part of my many additional supplemental formulations over the years. Now twenty-three years later some of these strains have been found in the GI tract of early humans and other mammals.

Humans have been consuming probiotic bacteria in the form of cultured, fermented foods for thousands of years. Foods like miso, yogurt and sauerkraut. Beneficial bacteria have never been more compatible according to researchers from the medical community. They are astounded by the newfound benefits of these healthy bacteria in far-reaching areas of health. 

As research continues the idea that we can get these bacteria’s in supplemental form only enhance their benefits, particularly to help combat drug-resistant bacterial infections that continue to emerge.

Studies have shown probiotic benefits during chemo treatments for cancer. Their benefits of have ranged from bone strength, lung health and mood support. These profound discoveries are leading to new approaches for countless chronic diseases safely and naturally. 

Science confirms that a large percentage of brain neurotransmitter activity actually occurs in the digestive tract. In fact, researchers call the gut “the second brain” because of these close interconnections.

Now, a new layer of gut-brain protection has been found with probiotics: Researchers recently demonstrated a correlation between increased probiotic bacteria in the gut and reduced risk of stroke. It is suggested that probiotic bacteria produce carotenoids, a class of antioxidants, help protect against cardiovascular disease factors by providing specific antioxidant support in a bioavailable, digestible form. Study scientists suggest that probiotic supplements could be used to protect cardiovascular health. 

Friends For Weight Control 

A 2013 clinical study published in the British Journal of Nutrition showed that specific probiotic bacteria called Lactobacillus gasseri reduced visceral fat in people by up to 9 percent after 12 weeks of drinking milk with that specific strain. Researchers suggest that the anti-inflammatory and digestive-supporting benefits of this probiotic strain may have been responsible this weight loss.

Visceral fat is a dangerous type of fat that accumulates around organs and in the midsection of the body. Other, earlier studies have also suggested that certain probiotic strains can aid in weight loss. A fascinating new study just published in the journal Science showed that sets of twins with weight differences also had significant differences in their gut microbes; those who were overweight had different bacteria than their thin twins. Furthermore, when probiotic bacteria from overweight twins were transplanted into thin mice, the
mice became overweight as well. The researchers also showed that with a diet emphasizing fruits and vegetables, the strains of bacteria that promote thinness were able to overpower the bacteria from overweight people and promote weight loss in mice.

As research continues, fascinating evidence is emerging on the countless roles of friendly microbes in promoting long-term health. Probiotics colonize many other areas of the body besides the intestinal tract. They’re found in diverse communities populating the lungs, skin, mouth and other areas of the body where they work to support immunity, fight harmful invaders and produce essential nutrients for optimal health. Strong, efficient digestion is the foundation of long-term wellness, and probiotics are an essential component. We now know that bacteria outnumber human cells in the body by 10:1. It’s time to add probiotics to your diet if you have not already done so.

Karlsson F. H. et al. Symptomatic atherosclerosis is associated with an altered gut metagenome. Nat. Commun. 3:1245 doi: 10.1038/ncomms2266 (2012).


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