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Healthy Gut, Healthy You – Benefits of Prebiotic on Gut Health

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The enormous and complex community of bacteria that populate our digestive tract is well known to play a key role in maintaining overall health and inner well-being. Gut bacteria produce various metabolites, which are essential for the normal function of the body. Furthermore, Gut health is used to refer to the balance of bacteria that live in the digestive tract, an imbalance in gut bacteria has been found to contribute to chronic diseases such as IBS, diabetes and can affect our mood, appetite, and immune responses. 

More and more consumers are learning about the connection between balanced microbiomes and our overall health and well-being. 

In order to maintain healthy and balanced gut microflora, we have to consume prebiotics which is utilized by the bacteria for their growth and function.

Benefits of Prebiotic on Gut Health

The state of gut microflora can impact health and well-being in many ways.

Why is gut health important?

The gut contains a large number of bacterial strains including beneficial and harmful bacteria.  The state of gut microflora can impact health and well-being in many ways, imbalance can cause symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, stomach pain, or nausea and also have an impact on general health.

A healthy digestive tract plays a crucial role in defending the body from the external environment. The gut bacteria are important habitats in our body; they produce various metabolites, which are essential for the normal function of the intestinal and the whole body and they improve digestion, vitamin production, detoxification of harmful elements, protection against pathogens, and regulation of the immune system. [1] Additional benefits include contributing to heart health, helping to mitigate symptoms of allergies and asthma, healthy aging, mood improvement, and balancing blood sugar levels. Even the health of the brain is connected to your gut health.

Gut and the immune system

The digestive system has been called the primary immune defense system as it is the major channel between the external environment and the internal systems of our body. 

Recent studies suggest that the immune system and the gut microbiota have a symbiotic relationship, cooperating to support and regulate each other. The importance of this interaction is clearly highlighted by the fact that 70–80% of the body’s immune cells are found in the gut. The microbiota frame the development of the immune system, and the immune system frames the composition of the microbiota [2].

Beneficial bacteria in the gut, such as Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus play a significant role in regulating our immune system, inhibiting the growth of pathogens by competing for resources, supporting the development of immune cells, fighting against inflammation, protecting the gut barrier, produce metabolic products, and contributing to the fine-tuning of immune responses.

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How to maintain gut health

The key to establishing and controlling a healthy gut  lies in keeping a balanced relation between the beneficial and pathogenic microorganisms. Multiple aspects of different lifestyles can affect gut bacteria such as daily diet, exercise habits, and exposure to environmental factors

Diet: 

Diet plays a crucial role in gut health, not only by maintaining overall nutritional support but also by supplying specific nutrients that directly supports the microbiota. 

Stress Management:

Recent studies also suggest that the health of the brain is connected to gut health. The beneficial bacteria in the human intestines regulate the synthesis of key neurotransmitters such as serotonin and GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) [3]. Abnormal levels can lead to symptoms such as depression and anxiety [4].

Exercising:

Studies suggest that exercise can enhance the number of beneficial microbial species, enrich the microflora diversity, and improve the development of commensal bacteria influencing also the production of short-chain fatty acids (SCFA). [5,6]

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are bacterial fermentation products found in high concentrations at the intestinal tract contributing to the maintenance of GI health [7]. 

They support the health of the mucosa inside the colon and according to studies can improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of metabolic diseases such as diabetes and obesity [8].

Prebiotics:

The supplementation of prebiotics is important to gut health and essential for optimal gut microbiota function. The positive effects of prebiotics on microbial growth and activity have been well studied, in particular regarding their ability to feed and sustain beneficial microbial colonies while helping to suppress harmful ones.

Synbiotics Products:

A mixture of prebiotics and probiotics to have a synergistic effect by promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut, help colonize intestines with beneficial microorganisms and restore the balance of gut microflora. Probiotic supplements support the microflora by delivering ‘good microbes’ to the gut, providing a wide range of health benefits. Consuming the correct prebiotic is vital for stimulating the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut and improving digestion.

Bioecolians – Beyond Prebiotic

As consumers learn more about the role of prebiotics in gut health, they are looking for simple ways to incorporate them into their lifestyle. However, not all prebiotics are created equal. 

Bioecolians, an alpha-gluco-oligosaccharide, is an effective, unique prebiotic, active at low doses, providing proven health benefits with only 2g/day.

It stimulates the natural growth and development of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium strains. These strains are key elements of healthy gut microflora. 

Bioecolians are also found to stimulate the production of Short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) and ß-defensins. ß-defensins is an essential antibacterial peptide involved in the immunity of the gut. It is secreted by the epithelial cells in the gut [9]. Bioecolians is the only prebiotic reported to stimulate the production of ß-defensin-2.

Bioecolians have a rapid effect that can be felt within 7 days of supplementation. Its unique molecular structure makes it heat- and acid-stable, non-viscous, and water-soluble, and also suitable for symbiotic formulation.

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References

  1. Healthy the of diversity and function, Structure. Consortium Project Microbiome Human. 1 14–207:486) 2012 (Nature. microbiome human 
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4420145/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4393509/ 
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5127831/ 
  5. https://gut.bmj.com/content/63/12/1913.long
  6. https://journals.lww.com/acsmessr/fulltext/2019/04000/exercise_and_the_gut_microbiome__a_review_of_the.4.aspx
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16633129/scag
  8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26260141/scaf
  9. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2405654520300974