Maintaining Weight With Probotics

by on November 10th, 2011 at 7:00 am

Weight ControlDo you dream about fast food? Does eating a greasy burger and fries sound good sometimes? Don’t feel bad. Everyone gets food cravings. The important thing is to keep those cravings under control and avoid obesity.

You see, scientists are learning that a high-fat diet can upset the balance of your intestinal bacteria and lead to obesity.1,3 Scientists are also learning that some bacteria may help you maintain a normal weight and bacterial balance.5,6

Bacteria and Weight Gain

A study showed that dietary fat intake could influence the balance of three groups of bacteria in the gut of mice: Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, and Proteobacteria.1 The mice were put on a high-fat diet. They experienced a decrease in Bacteroidetes and an increase in Firmicutes and Proteobacteria.

Similarly, a human study showed that there was a correlation between body weight and the balance of bacteria.2 The participants — twelve obese people — had fewer Bacteroidetes in the gut and more Firmicutes. When these people went on a diet and lost weight, the Bacteroidetes increased in number and the Firmicutes decreased in number.

So, fat intake and body weight can change the balance of intestinal microbes.

Scientists have also learned that certain types of dietary fat can increase body fat. For example, in a study, African green monkeys were given partially hydrogenated soybean oil and gained a noticeable amount of weight.3 This oil contains the same type of fat found in fast food.4

Probiotic Bacteria and Weight Control

If you’ve binged on fast food and put on a bit too much weight, some types of bacteria may be helpful.

One study showed that several Bifidobacterium species could help reduce weight gain in rats.5 The scientists who wrote the study fed two groups of rats a high-fat diet for five weeks. One group was given bifidobacteria, though. The rats that were given these probiotic bacteria gained less weight than the other rats.

Another study found that children with a normal body weight had higher numbers of bifidobacteria than children who were becoming overweight.6

So, probiotics like bifidobacteria may be a helpful part of weight control.

The NR Essentials™ Bio-5 Probiotic Blend contains four Bifidobacterium species and supports gastrointestinal health.


  1. Marie A. Hildebrandt et al, “High-Fat Diet Determines the Composition of the Murine Gut Microbiome Independently of Obesity,”Gastroenterology.
  2. Ruth E. Ley et al, “Microbial Ecology: Human Gut Microbes Associated with Obesity,” Nature.
  3. Kylie Kavanagh et al, “Trans Fat Diet Induces Abdominal Obesity and Changes in Insulin Sensitivity in Monkeys,” Obesity.
  4. American Heart Association, “Trans Fats,”
  5. Hyang Mi An et al, “Antiobesity and Lipid-Lowering Effects of Bifidobacterium spp. in High Fat Diet-Induced Obese Rats,” Lipids in Health and Disease.
  6. Marko Kalliomäki et al, “Early Differences in Fecal Microbiota Composition in Children May Predict Overweight,” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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