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Building Healthy Gut Bacteria: Key To Weight Loss

A study published in Science magazine found that mice without a protein known as toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) in their gut gain excessive weight and develop full-blown diabetes and fatty liver disease when fed a high-fat diet.

“The gut is a key player in metabolism, and this makes it even more than ever an ideal target for interventions for treating metabolic diseases and obesity,” said Dr. Francesco Rubino, a researcher and metabolic surgeon with the Catholic University of Rome, in Italy.

Gut Flora: Striking a Balance

The term gut flora refers to the delicate balance of microbes and other ‘germs,’ both good and bad, that live in the human gut (the stomach, small and large intestines and colon).

There are billions of gut flora bacterial cells in the human body, compromising over 400 different strains. In fact, the bacteria in your stomach can comprise up to 22lbs of your total body weight!

Our intestinal flora have a very large influence over the assimilation and absorption of what we eat. For e.g. there are certain types of flora that live within our gut and thrive on a high sugar diet, most notably Candida Albicans. If you get a bloat in your lower tummy after eating sugar, this is a good indication of a Candida bloom. These flora produce what are known as endotoxins. Endotoxins are poisonous substances that live within the bacteria themselves. When these bacteria die, the poisons within them flood into your body causing an immune response. If you have ever consumed sugar and felt nauseated, the endotoxins released into your system from bad gut flora are the culprit. This is just one example illustrating that if you want to lose weight and be fit and lean for life, you can’t ignore the influence wielded by the little bugs living in your gut.

Factors that Contribute to Unhealthy Gut Flora

Unfortunately, there are several features of the modern lifestyle directly contribute to unhealthy gut flora:

How to Maintain and Restore a Healthy Gut Flora

The first step in maintaining a healthy gut is to avoid all inhibitors. If you’ve been exposed to some of these factors, there are steps you can take to restore your gut flora:

Probiotic Foods Sources

  • Yoghurt
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Kefir- creamy dairy drink similar to yogurt.
  • Sauerkraut- made from fermented cabbage
  • Pickles
  • Miso Soup
  • Microalgae- such as spirulina, chorella, and blue-green algae.
  • Tempeh: a fermented, probiotic-rich grain made from soy beans.
  • Kimchi: an extremely spicy and sour fermented cabbage.
  • Kombucha Tea

In addition to probiotic therapy, you can reduce your weight and increase vitality by exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and lean sources of protein.


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