Probiotics – is your probiotic helping or hurting your weight loss efforts?

Probiotics are live organisms found in food and supplement form. You may already know that they are linked to health benefits including digestive health and immune health, but did you know they can also be used to help you lose weight and belly fat?

Studies have found that overweight people have a different balance of the gut bacteria than normal weight people. It is thought that certain strains of bacteria inhibit the absorption of fat, essentially reducing the amount of calories your body is using. Certain probiotics have also been shown to release the satiety hormone and decrease fat storage.

One study followed 210 people with significant belly fat. It found that taking Lactobacillus gasserifor 12 weeks reduced body weight, fat around organs, BMI, waist size and hip circumference. What’s more, belly fat was reduced by 8.5%. However, when participants stopped taking the probiotic, they gained back all of the belly fat within a month.

Weight loss is complex and you should not solely rely on a probiotic to lose weight. It is important to pay attention to your body and see if your specific strain of probiotic is helping. There are a few studies that show the Lactobacillus acidophilus strain did not help with weight loss at all and possibly caused weight gain.

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