The BBC have reported the findings of an interesting study on gut bacteria. There is already mounting evidence that gut bacteria have some link to obesity, but this found out some new things. The study was published in Genome Biology and carried out by a research team at Kings College, London. They looks at faeces samples from 3,600 twins to see whether there was evidence that the types of gut bacteria found was inherited. They found that if participants had a bigger range of gut bacteria, they had less visceral fat, which is the fat that gathers around the organs and is thought to be the most dangerous. To get a broader range of bacteria it is suggested that we eat a bigger range of foods. It is also thought that the gut microbes are passed down genetically and so this has a big influence too and could explain why obesity can seem to run in families.
This study is interesting and can help us to understand more about how the body works. To know that there is definitely a link between gut bacteria and fat is important although, there is certainly a lot of room for more research in the area. If it is all down to genetics, then there is little that can be done to change it, however, there seems to be the thought that having a varied diet can help. This is certainly worth a try, as not only could it help the gut bacteria be more diverse, but it will also ensure that we get a good range of nutrients in the diet as well.
It would certainly be fantastic if we could know which bacteria influence which systems in the boys and eat food containing them, but in the mean time a good range can be best. Below is a video explaining more about gut bacteria and the relationship with fat: