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The path to weight loss is not always easy, although one of the most important aspects is learning to trust our instincts: eat when we are hungry and stop when we are satisfied. Finally creating a conscious approach to eating that is not based on restricting hours or food is the key to long-term success; it is also the secret formula to live longer and prevent chronic diseases. Another fundamental aspect: trust and support the proper functioning of your gut bacteria. For those who are not so clear, according to a new study published in the journal mSystems led by the American Society for Microbiology. The good bugs that inhabit the gut have a direct impact on our ability to lose weight.
According to statements by the study’s lead author, Christian Diener, professor and research scientist at the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle, Washington: “The gut microbiome can help or cause resistance to weight loss and this opens the possibility of trying to alter the weight loss. gut microbiome to impact weight loss. “
What did the study consist of? The scientists analyzed a selection of people enrolled in a diet or exercise intervention program that included behavioral counseling from dietitians and nurses. During the 6-12 month program, 48 participants lost more than 1% of their body weight per month and 57 people maintained the same body mass index (BMI) and weight. Using metagenomics (also known as stool and blood sample analysis) and controlling for age, gender, and baseline BMI, the researchers compared the following factors for the weight loss and stable weight groups: blood metabolites, blood proteins, clinical laboratories, dietary questionnaires, and gut bacteria.
When it comes to weight loss, some common factors were found including genes that help bacteria grow at a faster rate, multiply more frequently, replicate and assemble cell walls. The truth is that there are numerous previous references of great value, in which gut bacteria have been directly linked to obesity. More specifically, the composition of bacteria in the gut was found to be different in people with obesity, and now in this study, the researchers found that there is a different set of genes encoded in gut bacteria that also respond to interventions. weight loss.
Complementary to this, according to Dr. Diener: “The gut microbiome is an important player in modulating whether or not a weight loss intervention will be successful. The factors that dictate obesity versus non-obesity are not the same factors that dictate whether you will lose weight with a lifestyle intervention. ” That is why ensuring good intestinal health is key in weight loss and also in many other health aspects such as: a strong immune system, quality of sleep, mood, cardiovascular health and mental functioning. Not for nothing is the intestine popularly considered the second brain.
Therefore one of the key health tools in weight loss is based on ensuring healthy functioning of the gut microbiota and this is achieved through lifestyle adjustments. In such a way that our habits and the quality of nutrients that we consume is key to improving the quality of the intestinal flora.
5 ways to grow better gut bacteria
1. Get more probiotics
Probiotic foods are added living organisms that remain active in the intestine in sufficient quantity to alter the gut microbiota and its recurring use is associated with a long list of health benefits. They are found in many foods, however the ones that are most interesting for intestinal health are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which are usually found in fermented products such as yogurt, kefir and tempeh. Best of all, they are easy to integrate into your daily diet, the perfect example is yogurt.
2. Increase your fiber intake
It is no secret to say that fiber is directly related to benefits to improve the digestive process, intestinal health and ensure proper waste elimination. Experts recommend consuming more than 40 grams per day, which is about double the current averages. And with this, significant improvements in intestinal bacteria are guaranteed, in addition to consuming more fiber benefits other aspects of health since it reduces heart diseases and some cancers, in addition to benefiting weight loss. Bet on the consumption of fruits, vegetables, especially legumes (lentils, beans and chickpeas) and whole grains.
3. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
Undoubtedly one of the most essential nutritional recommendations to give a healthy boost to the microbiome, is increase consumption of fresh, colorful and seasonal fruits and vegetables. The variety will be just as important as the quantities, it is recommended to bet on those that shine for their fiber content: artichokes, leeks, onions and garlic, which contain high levels of inulin (a prebiotic fiber). Also a good addition are artichokes, chard, carrots, lettuce, spinach, beets, mushrooms, turnips, and asparagus. In a very specific way, the daily consumption of a banana is recommended, thanks to its exceptional prebiotic fiber content.
4. Take it easy with red meat
In recent months, everything has been said about the consequences of excessive consumption of red meat and its effects on intestinal health are also a good reason to limit them. Carnitine, a compound found in red meat, can interact with gut bacteria to increase the risk of plaque in the arteries. They are also characterized by being meats with a high content of saturated fats that intervene in a negative way in body weight, they are also usually heavier for digestion and thus alter the good intestinal function. Bet on the consumption of white and blue fish, chicken, turkey and proteins of plant origin.
5. Avoid processed foods
Processed foods are one of the deadliest enemies of good health and body weight, although it is difficult to talk about a specific composition as each food has a different list of ingredients. In general it is known that they are products with a high caloric content, low fiber content And they are often packed with added sugars, salt, artificial sweeteners and / or additives and preservatives. It is worth mentioning that the intestinal microbiome is nourished by various types of fiber and antioxidant substances such as polyphenolsTherefore, it is essential to consider the consumption of colorful fruits, vegetables and whole grains. There are some healthy options such as natural tomato paste, some dairy and whole grain breads, the secret is to always check the labels.
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