Obesity is now considered to be a worldwide pandemic affecting approximately 1 in 3 people. Over the decades, a lot of efforts are put in to attain the desired weight and help control the incidence of weight loss.
New Evidence shows that the gut microbiota is an important contributor. The gut microbiota represents the sum of all bacteria that are present in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract starting from the oral cavity and increasing in its density along the small and large intestine. (Mazloom K, et. al, 2019).
Obesity has been associated with structural and functional changes in the gut microbiota.
You’re not alone if you’ve been trying to shed all that extra weight, but still, carry more belly fat than you’d like. There are a lot of men and women out there who are feeling frustrated every single day for not being able to achieve those six-pack abs or throw on that shift dress, in spite of the strict diets and endless crunches and planks. Maybe it’s time you considered adding probiotics to your diet to help with your fitness goals.
If you don’t know what probiotics are and how they can help you achieve the desired fat-loss results, then understand this. There are different types of bacteria in your digestive system – some good and some bad – that constitute 1-3% of your total body weight. The type and amount of these bacteria in the gut can directly affect your weight, metabolism, immune function, and more.
Boosting the good bacteria in your digestive tract, called the gut microbiome, can help you improve your body composition. Probiotics are living microorganisms, similar to the body-friendly bacteria in your gut, which can be included in your diet to derive health benefits like reduced risk of gastrointestinal disorders, better immune function, improved cardiovascular health, and weight loss.
Probiotics are found naturally in yogurt, pickles, apple cider vinegar, kimchi, raw cheese, kefir, and other fermented foods. However, they are also available as dietary supplements for those who are unable to get ‘good bacteria’ from food or are seeking faster results.
How can probiotics help you burn belly fat?
According to studies, certain probiotic strains, such as those of the Lactobacillus family, have proven successful in reducing belly fat and also, maintaining body weight in the long run. Here’s how:
Probiotics can lower fat absorption
The bacteria in your digestive tract can influence the way your body absorbs nutrients from food and uses them for energy. Probiotics help lower the number of calories (dietary fats) you absorb; thereby increasing the excretion of bile from the body, which in turn promotes the loss of belly fat.
Probiotics can help burn more calories
Consumption of probiotics leads to the release of the satiety hormone GLP-1 in the body, which will reduce your appetite and increase the resting energy expenditure, allowing you to burn fat and lose more weight. Even obese people can experience rapid weight loss with probiotic supplements.
Probiotics can decrease fat storage
Probiotics increase the circulation of ANGPTL4 protein, which regulates the accumulation of fats in the body. Increased levels of this protein can lead to reduced fat storage and in turn, weight loss.
Moreover, probiotics are also known to reduce inflammation that drives obesity and prevent weight gain when on a high-calorie diet – all of which can further help you with your belly fat. The only thing you need to remember while looking for a high potency probiotic supplement is the different strains of bacteria in it and the number of active cultures or CFUs (colony forming units – in billions).
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- Mazloom, K., Siddiqi, I., & Covasa, M. (2019). Probiotics: How Effective Are They in the Fight against Obesity?. Nutrients, 11(2), 258.
- Ferrarese R, Ceresola ER, Preti A, Canducci F. Probiotics, prebiotics and synbiotics for weight loss and metabolic syndrome in the microbiome era. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2018;22(21):7588-7605.