Are probiotic foods helping us lose weight?Look at any supermarket fridge section and you will find a number of probiotics, from tablets to yogurts, fermented foods such as Sauerkraut & Kimchi. Do we all need these products? Will they aid weight loss? Can they cause more harm than good?
What harm can using probiotic do to us?Researchers from University of New South Wales performed an Australian study on rats. They found good bacteria like Lactobacillus had an effect on rats with poor diets. Rats with a normal or healthy diet had little effect. In fact, some rats had side effects such as memory impairment with object recognition.
The researchers exposed two groups of rats to a low or high dose of probiotic for two weeks. Then one group diet was changed to a standard western bad diet which lasted for 25 days. They concluded that the probiotics changed their digestive tract, improved brain function and prevented memory loss. The rats that were on a healthy diet, the probiotic had little impact on their gut and impaired their recognition memory.
If you are eating a healthy diet, probiotics may not be of any benefit and may cause more harm than good, but if you are a bad eater, probiotics may be beneficial.
Do thin people have different gut bacteria to fat people?
The short answer is yes. A study of twins by Kings College in London showed that our genes played a part in determining whether we have gut bacteria beneficial to our weight. Researchers found a new family of bacteria, which slimmer people have more of.
Out gut microbes along with our genetic background could help personalised therapies that could help overweight people manage their weight.
Which food item have the best probiotics?
Yogurt is still one of the best probiotics to get your dose of good bacteria. There are others such as Sauerkraut, Kefir, Kimchi which has these good probiotics but if you are overweight, looking to improve your gut, then yogurt is the best.
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