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June 19, 2017
Dysbiosis and Disease
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In our previous blog about probiotics and gut bacteria we discussed how the term dysbiosis simply means our gut bacteria is out of balance. This means that we either have a low microbe count in our GI tract or an excess of bad bacteria compared to good bacteria. We discussed causes of dysbiosis: such as poor diet, high stress, and excessive antibiotic use. Today we are going to discuss the implications and common diseases and health conditions associated with dysbiosis.

Research has shown that many common diseases are associated with dysbiosis. Primarily, dysbiosis is one of the causes of inflammation in the gut. The bacteria living in the gut excrete a toxin that causes inflammation in the organs in the body and activate the immune system.  This increased gut inflammation is associated with inflammatory bowel diseases like irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s Disease, and Ulcerative Colitis. 

Research has also shown that dysbiosis is linked with metabolic syndrome and obesity as well. The toxin excreted by the harmful bacteria also is responsible for decreasing insulin sensitivity, therefore serving a role in metabolic syndrome and diabetes.

Regarding gut bacteria and obesity, individuals who are obese have less variety of strains of bacteria in their gut compared with a leaner individual. This means the obese individual has more bad bacteria compared to good bacteria. On a positive note, gut biomes can be easily changed which we will discuss in later posts.

This does not mean that the diseases discussed cause dysbiosis, nor that dysbiosis cause the diseases. But what it does mean is that for some of these diseases, improving gut health could potentially have beneficial effects on disease symptoms. Researchers have shown that probiotic use, or healing the gut has improved symptoms in individuals with irritable bowel diseases. In our next articles we will discuss how dysbiosis has been linked with brain health, psychiatric diseases, such as depression and anxiety, and we will discuss easy ways to improve and maintain a healthy gut.

Remember that you can talk to your doctor and/or dietitian about dysbiosis or probiotics anytime. Set up your next appointment or your summer schedule with them at 425-861-6258 today.  And 20/20 Lifestyles has our own probiotics supplement you can buy at the Resource Center or at the front desk. You can even use your HSA or FSA card for them too. Our probiotics come with 100 Billion Colony Forming Units (CFUs) and can help you build and maintain a happy and healthy gut!


To read more of our Probiotics Blog Series: follow for What is a Probiotic, What is Dysbiosis, Dysbiosis and Your Brain, and Rebuilding the Gut After Antibiotics.

Written by Andy Miller

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