Typically bad nutrition and lack of exercise are blamed as the main causes of obesity. Some say it is as easy as: if you eat too much and you don’t exercise enough, you get fat.

However, experts say that theory doesn’t explain every case. Now we know that the bacteria that live in our intestinal tract could be keeping us overweight as well as causing other health conditions.

An adult intestine can host up to 100 billion bacteria; a number 10 times bigger than our total cell count. This bacterial universe establishes a relationship of symbiosis with our organism, and we both benefit from this association.

How we benefit from our intestinal flora:

- It helps ferment foods that we are not able to digest by ourselves
– It inhibits growth of harmful bacteria
– It stimulates the immune system and produces beneficial substances

The role of intestinal flora is so relevant that experts started to suspect differences in the intestinal flora of slim and overweight people.

“In the past 5 years we’ve seen that the intestinal microbiota can influence the development of metabolic diseases such as obesity, diabetes type 2, inflammatory and cardiovascular pathologies and even the risk of cancer” explains Javier Gomez Ambrosi, of the Metabolic Investigation Laboratory of the Clinic University of Navarra, Spain “Investigations have demonstrated that the intestinal microbiota genes of overweight people are more efficient at obtaining energy from foods, therefore allowing more energy to be accumulated in the body as body fat” further explains Dr. Ambrosi.

A specially interesting finding is that these alterations in the intestinal flora revert back to normal after weight loss. This allows us to think that manipulating intestinal flora could be a new tool used in weight management.

The types of nutrients we ingest also influence the intestinal flora. For example, if they are high in fat, they can increase the production of endotoxin producing bacteria and generate “metabolic endotoxemia”, a condition that promotes obesity.


Consuming Prebiotics, functional foods that contain non digestible elements such as fibre (soluble and insoluble), stimulates the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria and could be very effective in regulating body weight.


Probiotics are foods that contain live bacteria, such as yogurt. It is thought that they could have positive effects, but there are no studies that show that these can modify intestinal flora in a way that helps weight loss.

A diet high in fibre, vegetables and naturally occurring foods can balance the ecosystem in our tummies that can keep us slim and healthy forever.

Author's Bio: 

Anna Aparicio is regarded as Ireland's top female NLP/Hypnosis Life Coach. A Self-confidence and Motivation Expert, she has helped hundreds of people all around the world feel empowered, super confident, and lead happier more succesful lives. With a unique blend of Neuro-linguistic Programming, cutting edge personal development tools, and a contagious sense of humour and zest for life, Anna is renowned for getting results fast. Now you can get her free report WHY YOU'LL NEVER GET WHAT YOU WANT UNLESS YOU DO THIS at http://www.delite.ie