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The Link between your Gut’s Bacteria and Obesity

In this week’s newsletter we share with you another extract from Dr David Perlmutter’s book, Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect Your Brain – for Life. We will look at the link between your gut’s bacteria and obesity and how your intestinal flora can make you fat and the effects it has on your health. 

“While it’s hard to imagine obesity as an inflammatory disease, just as it may seem difficult to grasp that dementia and depression are inflammatory diseases, all are exactly that. For starters, obesity is associated with increased production of pro-inflammatory chemicals, or cytokines. These molecules largely come from the fat tissue itself, which acts like an organ pumping out hormones and inflammatory substances. Fat cells do more than simply store extra calories; they are far more involved in human physiology than we had previously thought.

And if you have more fat than you need, especially around visceral organs such as the liver, heart, kidneys, pancreas, and intestines, your metabolism will suffer. This type of “visceral fat” which is often pronounced in obese individuals, spells double trouble in the body. This type of fat houses hordes of inflammatory white blood cells. What’s more, when visceral fat produces hormonal and inflammatory molecules, they get dumped directly into the liver, which responds with another round of ammunition, specifically, inflammation-producing reactions and hormone-disrupting substances.

Long story short: Visceral fat is more than merely an enemy standing by. It is an enemy that is armed and dangerous. The number of health conditions now linked to visceral fat is tremendous, from the obvious ones such as obesity and metabolic syndrome to the not-so-obvious – cancer, autoimmune disorders, and brain disease. The danger of visceral fat explains why your waist size is often a measure of “health”; the roundness of your belly predicts future health challenges and mortality. Put simply, the higher your waist circumference, the higher your risk for disease and death. Girth can also predict adverse structural changes in the brain.

If the level of inflammation predicts neurological disorders, and excess body fat increases inflammation, obesity is a risk factor for brain disease. And such inflammation is responsible for a lot of the conditions we attribute to obesity, not just neurological challenges. It’s as much a key player in diabetes as it is in hypertension, for instance. These conditions may come with separate symptoms and be categorized differently (diabetes is a metabolic problem, whereas hypertension is a cardiovascular one), but they share a key underlying feature: inflammation.

The ratio of bacteria types in the gut is important. Multiple studies show that when the number of Firmicutes is reduced, so is the risk for metabolic problems like diabetes. On the other hand, when the number of Bacteroidetes is low, there is increased gut permeability, which in turn raises all kinds of risks, not the least of which is immune system mayhem, inflammation, and farther down the road brain-related disorders and diseases, from depression to Alzheimer’s.

I should also add that exercise serves a role in promoting the right balance of microbes. We’ve long known about the benefits of exercise in general, but it turns out that its impact in weight loss and management isn’t just about burning more calories. New science reveals that exercise positively influences the gut’s balance of bacteria to favour colonies that prevent weight gain.”

So in conclusion, once again we see how important it is for your gut microbes to be balanced and to contain all the right beneficial bacteria needed to avoid inflammation which you can get from the food you eat, exercise and of course a good probiotic.

Efficient Microbes Probiotics ensure diversity and balance of the gut bacteria which directly affect the health of the brain and the entire nervous system.”

Click here to visit our product page for more information.

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