Gut Bacteria Makeup May Play A Role In Weight Loss

A new preliminary study published in the August issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings looks at gut bacteria activities in relation to a person’s ability to lose weight. Gut bacteria may inhibit certain individuals’ weight loss efforts despite a dedication to diet and exercise. Take a moment to learn about this small study:

Food Particle Breakdown

"Gut bacteria have the capacity to break down complex food particles, which provides us with additional energy. And this is normally is good for us," says Vandana Nehra, M.D, a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist and co-senior author of the study. "However, for some individuals trying to lose weight, this process may become a hindrance."

Drs. Kashyap, Purna Kashyap, M.B.B.S., and their colleagues collected gut bacteria samples from 26 individuals participating in the Mayo Clinic Obesity Treatment Research Program during August and September 2013. They found the gut bacteria in persons who did not shed excess pounds was different from those capable of losing weight.

Specific Strains

The bacteria Phascolarctobacterium was linked to weight loss while the bacteria Dialister was associated with weight loss problems. Additionally, certain carbohydrate “use” was connected to weight loss issues.

"This suggested to us that gut bacteria may possibly be an important determinant of weight loss in response to diet and lifestyle changes,” Dr. Kashyap noted.

Findings Are Still In Preliminary Stages

Despite these findings more research is needed to determine gut bacteria’s role in weight loss. Diet, exercise, and Phentermine 37.5mg still play vital roles in losing weight.  

"While we need to replicate these findings in a bigger study, we now have an important direction to pursue in terms of potentially providing more individualized strategies for people who struggle with obesity," Dr. Kashyap remarked.
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