Talking about the best probiotics for weight loss in women might sound like an obvious scam. However, we know that probiotic bacteria are essential for a healthy metabolism which is associated with weight.
Let’s try answering two questions:
- Do probiotic bacteria control body weight?
- Are some bacteria better for weight loss in women than in men?
Bacteria controlling body weight
Several studies reveal that among the hundreds of bacteria species colonizing the digestive tract a few are involved in weight control.
One example is Akkermansia muciniphila with a unique ability to affect the rate of weight loss of both women and men. Akkermansia colonizes the gut of most people. However, due to a poor lifestyle it can become suppressed. In addition, researchers have found another bacteria that seems to work best for weight loss in women. Sorry men!
Probiotics for weight loss in women
A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition showed some surprising results—probiotic bacteria that support weight loss only in women.
Previous studies have demonstrated that the intestinal flora of obese individuals differs from that of thin people. This difference is likely due to a poor diet and lifestyle. Sugar, processed foods, low-quality fat and low fiber promotes bacteria species responsible for weight and suppresses species supporting weight loss.
Could the consumption of certain bacteria reset the gut balance in favor of bacteria promoting weight loss?
This was tested on 125 obese men and women during 12 weeks. First, they were put on a weight-loss diet. After this followed 12 weeks trying to maintain body weight. During this time, half of the subjects took two pills daily containing the probiotics Lactobacillus rhamnosus. The other group received a placebo—a pill without active contents.
Better weight loss for women
On the average, there was a weight loss of 4.4 kg (almost 10 pounds) in women in the group taking probiotics and 2.6 kg (just under 6 pounds) in the placebo group not taking probiotics. However, there was no difference in weight loss among males in the two groups.
“We don’t know why the probiotics didn’t have any effect on men. It may be a question of dosage, or the study period may have been too short,” says Professor Tremblay, who is also the Canada Research Chair in Environment and Energy Balance.
After an additional 12-weeks period trying to maintain their weight, the women in the placebo group had remained stable but the probiotic group had continued to lose weight. In total, these women lost 5.2 kg (11.5 pounds) per person and twice as much as the control group.
Overweight women consuming Lactobacillus rhamnosus lost 5.2 kg (11.5 pounds) over a 24-week period
This indicates that certain probiotic bacteria influence a person’s weight. How is that possible?
It is likely that probiotic bacteria affect the permeability of the intestinal wall. By keeping pro-inflammatory substances from entering the bloodstream, beneficial bacteria prevent the chain reaction that leads to glucose intolerance, type 2 diabetes, and weight gain.
Probiotic bacteria also communicates with the brain and can increase or decrease appetite which is a powerful factor in weight control.
Weight loss bacteria designed for women?
Lactobacillus rhamnosus used in this study is found in yoghurt and many probiotic supplements. The researchers believe other probiotics bacteria in dairy products could have a similar effect on weight.
- L. rhamnosus affects lowers the stress hormone corticosterone, thus reducing anxiety and depression.
- L. rhamnosus promotes destruction of harmful bacteria. It causes the body to manufacture natural antibiotic substances to fight disease.
A woman trying to lose weight might wan to try consuming L. rhamnosus. Here are two supplements containing this strain:
One of the best sources of L rhamnosus is homemade fermented food using a starter culture containing L. rhamnosus. Dr Mercola Kinetic Culture is one example.
Gut bacteria communicate with the brain
Research has established that beneficial gut bacteria communicate with the brain through the vagus nerve. This is one reason why gut bacteria control appetite. There’s a feedback-loop between foods a person crave and gut microorganisms. These microorganisms depend on certain nutrients to survive and therefore create a craving for such foods.
For example, microbes feeding on sugar can signal the brain to consume more sweets. People who suffer from candida overgrowth often have severe sugar cravings as candida needs sugar to survive.
Diet improvements quickly alters gut bacteria composition!
This illustrates how each person ultimately controls composition of the intestinal microflora. How is that? The food we decide to consume affects the composition of gut bacteria—for better or for worse.
10 tips for weight loss
This research point in one direction: Feeding the colony of good gut bacteria promotes weight loss for both men and women.
- Consume fermented foods. Yogurt, kefir, and fermented vegetables on a daily basis can have a good effect on the gut and help control appetite.
- L. rhamnosus. Women consuming Lactobacillus rhamnosus have a definite advantage in controlling weight.
- A. muciniphila promotes weight loss. This bacterium can help both men and women. Read more here.
- A probiotic supplement. This is a simple, fast way to get going in the right direction. Choosing a probiotic supplement.
- Add extra fiber. Don’t underestimate this simple but highly effective way to stimulate the growth of gut bacteria. Psyllium husk is excellent.
- Lower sugar intake. High sugar intake can cause bacteria responsible for weight gain and obesity to dominate the digestive tract. Such people have very difficult losing weight as they have a two-front battle—a strong appetite and gut bacteria promoting weight gain.
- Control stress. Stress can disrupt the delicate gut balance.
- When on antibiotics, add lots of probiotics.
- Exercise. Everything counts; walking is great. Try short bursts of high-intensity training.
- Keto diet. Consuming more fat, less carbs good way to control appetite.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0007114513003875 Marina Sanchez, Christian Darimont, Vicky Drapeau, Shahram Emady-Azar, Melissa Lepage, Enea Rezzonico, Catherine Ngom-Bru, Bernard Berger, Lionel Philippe, Corinne Ammon-Zuffrey, Patricia Leone, Genevieve Chevrier, Emmanuelle St-Amand, André Marette, Jean Doré and Angelo Tremblay. Effect of Lactobacillus rhamnosus CGMCC1.3724 supplementation on weight loss and maintenance in obese men and women. British Journal of Nutrition, available on CJO2013. doi:10.1017/S0007114513003875.