Gut is home to billions of bacteria that ferment non-digestible carbohydrates; the by-products of this fermentation increase satiety, decrease appetite and also promote energy expenditure by modulating the metabolism of bile acids. Altering the gut microbiota – taking probiotics for example could therefore help to prevent or combat overweight and obesity.

A meta-analysis of clinical trials has been published by the journal Obesity Reviews. The results show that people who took probiotic supplements for a short period (3 to 12 weeks) have had a significantly greater decrease in body weight (-0.6%), body mass index (-0.27) and percentage of fat (-0.6%) than those who have not taken any (significatively at 95%).

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