The Link Between Gut Health & Weight Loss
If you’ve recently scrolled on any social media platform lately, the chances are pretty high that you’ve been seeing more and more ads for weight loss miracle probiotic supplements. And, if you’re like us, there’s a good chance those ads left you scratching your head and wondering, ‘Is there really a link between gut health and weight loss?’
The quick answer is yes, but the full explanation is more nuanced.
To be blunt, there is a lot of not-so-credible information and pseudo-science floating around the internet when the topic of weight loss comes up.
So, before we announce that we’ve uncovered a weight loss supplement wonder (spoiler alert, we’re not), we sought out credible research to better understand the connection between your gut health and weight loss. Let’s start with the basics.
The Role of Gut Bacteria
Your body hosts trillions of bacteria, which are mostly in your intestines.
They play critical roles in your health, such as communicating with your immune system, producing certain vitamins, and even influencing your mood.
Importantly, gut bacteria can also affect how different foods are digested and trigger the release of chemicals that help make you feel full. So, it stands to reason that a balanced gut microbiome can affect your appetite, food intake, and weight.
Let’s also not forget the not so pretty fact if you’re struggling with bowel movements, or other digestive distress like gas, bloating, or water retention, you’re simply carrying around a crappy amount of extra weight. Which may be why many people do shed a few pounds when they begin supporting their gut health.
Now that we’ve talked about the basics, let’s answer the real reason you’re reading this blog… could improving digestive health help promote healthy weight loss?
Here’s What the Science Says
While research on the link between gut health and weight loss is still evolving, the latest research supports a link between your gut microbiome and your ability to lose weight.
One 2021 study suggests that the composition of your gut microbiome could indeed influence weight loss success.
While another study, took it further and examined the gut bacteria in 77 pairs of twins; one of whom had obesity and one of whom did not. These researchers found that obesity was associated with lower gut bacteria diversity. Research concluded that the gut microbiome impacted how different foods were digested, which contributed to the difference in body composition.
As you may know, a balance and robust gut microbiome isn’t just something you have, or do not have. Our lifestyles and diets can help or hinder our gut’s ability to thrive. Some research suggests that a high-fiber, whole-grain diet actually helps the growth of certain bacteria that have been shown to determine a person’s body fat loss success.
While we’re on the topic of lifestyle, let’s talk about movement. One struggle that prevents many from moving the way they want and need to in order to live a healthy life is inflammation. Multiple studies show that a balanced gut fights overall inflammation. In fact, one study shows that certain gut bacteria are essential for a healthy gut barrier, which prevents inflammation, water retention, and weight gain.
How To Improve Gut Health
One thing we can all agree upon is that a healthy gut microbiome is essential for optimum well-being.
Eating a gut-friendly diet that contains plenty of fiber, prebiotics, fermented foods rich in probiotics and savvy supplementation can help the beneficial bacteria in your gut to thrive.
If you do decide to add supplements to your routine, do the research and find what your body needs. We get it, the world of supplements can be confusing between CFUs, all the different strains of probiotics, plant vs. animal based digestive enzymes, and so on. Our blog has a lot of information to help decode the world of gut health supplements.
In the meantime, while scientists continue to study the link between gut health and weight loss. We’ll keep an eye on any updates and continue to report back.
Want to jumpstart your healthy gut goals? Download our 3-Day Gut Health Reset eBook below.
For more gut health advice, visit our Digestive Support page and take a 2-minute quiz to find your digestive solution. Or contact our Customer Service Team, who can answer your questions seven days a week at firstname.lastname@example.org or M-F from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at (800) 940-1972.