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Woman on walk outside with towel over shoulder. Text: A gut-healthy way to lose weight

How Gut Health Affects Weight Loss

A Gut-Healthy Way to Lose Weight

As the holiday season approaches, many people are already thinking about the start of a New Year and reminded about those “Let’s lose weight!” resolutions.

It’s not surprising given the results of a recent American Psychological Association report we shared about average weight gains during our COVID-19 hibernation that nearly doubled the quarantine 15 weight-gain assumptions.

Most people focus on the basics, but did you know your gut affects your ability to lose weight too?

 

The Gut-Weight Link

In a recent study appearing in mSystems that examined a subset of patients who were part of a behavioral modification study, scientists at the Institute for Systems Biology concluded that the mix of bacteria in the gut not only influences your ability to lose weight, but it can prevent it too.

Out of the 105 patients who participated over 6 to 12 months, 57 patients maintained the same BMI and lost no weight while the remaining 48 patients lost more than 1 percent of their body weight each month.

What’s more, these patients were given a specific diet or exercise plan to follow which led researchers to dig deeper with blood work and stool samples.

 

Two key findings stood out:

  1. People whose weight and BMIs remained the same during the study had a gut bacteria mix that broke down starchy foods into sugars more effectively.
  2. Among patients who lost weight consistently, researchers identified genes that helped gut bacteria grow, replicate and form cell walls faster, allowing starches to be consumed before they could add extra pounds.

These differences in genes shed light on the impact of nutrient-poor Western diets that create differences in the composition of gut bacteria among healthy people and those are obese, says lead study author Dr. Christian Diener.

So, what do you do to lose those extra pounds?

 

The Gut-Healthy Way To Lose Weight

You can take healthy steps — eat more nutrient-dense whole foods, incorporate more movement during your day and take a few minutes at day’s end to destress — but your body may still need help to build the momentum it needs to lose those extra pounds.

That’s where research has shown how targeted strains of beneficial bacteria in a probiotic supplement can maintain the healthy balance in our gut and help our bodies regulate our metabolism. (This is especially important if you’re older due to a natural decline of beneficial bacteria in your gut.)

EndoMune Metabolic Rescue contains a proven blend of Bifidobacterium lactis and the prebiotic XOS (Xylooligosaccharides) that stimulates the release of hormones in your gut that reduce your appetite by promoting a greater sense of fullness.

If you’ve been struggling to get started on your weight loss journey, EndoMune Metabolic Rescue is formulated to help you start your weight loss journey in a safe, all-natural, gut-healthy way.

 

Resources

mSystems

Technology Networks: Immunology & Microbiology

Science Focus/BBC

Nourish/WebMD

 

Illustration of woman holding her hands in the shape of a heart over her gut while arrows point in cyclical directions from her gut to her brain. TEXT: Gut-Brain Axis 101 A gutsy link to your emotions.

Gut-Brain Axis 101

Gut-Brain Axis 101: The Gutsy Link to Your Emotions

How often do you make decisions based on a gut feeling during the day? And, do you notice butterflies in your stomach when you do make them?

We’re not exactly sure about the origins of those sayings but it seems as if we have known about the gut-brain axis — the connection that links the brain, intestines and emotions — for a very long time.

Although its existence had been debated in the past, that became impossible once modern medicine proved some 90 percent of serotonin (a neurotransmitter chemical that governs mood) in the body originates in the human gut, and specific bacteria play important roles in producing it.

The gut and brain are linked by the enteric nervous system (ENS), a network of 100 million nerve cells that line the gastrointestinal tract from the esophagus down to the rectum. Although the ENS doesn’t “think,” it transmits signals between the gut and brain.

Unfortunately, we begin to notice the gut-brain axis in our lives when these two-way signals become scrambled due to disruptions in the healthy balance of gut bacteria due to variables like a poor diet that lead to more stress and less restful sleep.

The good news: There are safe and effective tools you can use to bring balance to your gut and calm your brain.

 

Protecting Your Gut-Brain Axis At Work

The world of information technology (IT) — encompassing everything from information processing to building computers and websites like this one — is known for the high-pressure, 24/7 demands it places on its workforce.

Given those many stressors, a team of Chinese scientists investigated how to create more emotional stability to IT workers via the gut-brain axis with the help of a daily probiotic.

Out of 90 recruits, 36 IT workers (ages 20-60) met the criteria to participate in an eight-week trial, largely based on high initial stress test scores.

During the trial, workers took a probiotic containing a proprietary strain of Lactobacillus plantarum (one of the 10 strains of beneficial bacteria contained in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic).

After the testing period, stress test scores dropped significantly in terms of self-perceived stress, depression and overall negative emotions as well as gastrointestinal problems.

Additionally, scientists also noted a decrease in cortisol (the body’s primary stress hormone) with a coordinated increase in positive emotions with IT workers taking a probiotic.

 

The Gut-Brain Health Solution

You can tell the popularity of the gut-brain axis has grown by leaps and bounds given all of the new attention by medical experts looking for alternatives for the alarming rise of prescription drugs to treat anxiety, depression and insomnia just during the coronavirus pandemic.

Making lifestyle changes in the form of eating healthier diets full of nutrient-dense foods rich in dietary fiber and getting more sleep really do matter, but those aren’t the only tools at your disposal if you want to keep your gut-brain axis working as it should.

Taking one more precaution — a probiotic — gives your gut-brain axis the extra protection you need, especially on those extra-long workdays from home or at the office.

Make sure that any probiotic you select contains proven, lab-tested strains of beneficial bacteria and a prebiotic, made from non-digestible plant fibers and carbohydrates that feed the good guys in your gut (they may help you fight cancer too).

It really takes a community of beneficial bacteria and prebiotics to protect your gut-brain axis. That why EndoMune Advanced Probiotic is formulated with 10 strains and 30 BILLION CFUs of beneficial bacteria from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families, plus the prebiotic FOS.

 

Resources

Frontiers in Nutrition

Healthline

Johns Hopkins Medicine

Caltech

Neuroendocrinology

Mayo Clinic

University Hospitals/Cleveland Medical Center

Five capsules on a wooden measuring spoon next to a glass of water. Text: 4 Good reasons why you need a probiotic

Four Reasons Why You Need a Probiotic

Given that your attention has been diverted very recently to more pressing issues like the coronavirus, it’s a good time to remind you about a few of the many good reasons you should be taking a probiotic.

1. Maintaining the healthy balance of your gut

Did you know that an unhealthy imbalance of bacteria in your gut can make you vulnerable to a more severe case of the coronavirus?

The gut health of patients stricken with the coronavirus lacked strains of beneficial bacteria that could muster a good immune system response, according to a very recent study.

What’s more, severe cases of the coronavirus among patients were linked to the absence of several strains of beneficial bacteria in their gut, including Bifidobacterium bifidum (one of the potent strains of bacteria featured in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.)

2. Protecting your gut health from common drugs

We’re learning more by the day about the effect even ordinary over-the-counter drugs like aspirin may have on your gut.

Taking a probiotic may be helpful in relieving gut-related problems linked to taking aspirin, and it won’t interfere with the cardiovascular reasons patients take a low-dose aspirin every day either.

3. Getting the restful sleep you need

We’ve talked a lot about the benefits of taking a probiotic to help you get a good night’s sleep due to abrupt changes in your body’s circadian sleep cycles triggered by jet lag or late-night work schedules, and sleep apnea can be problematic for your gut too.

However, the combination of a probiotic plus a CPAP device can do wonders to relieve most of the common fatigue patients experience, and it may lower the risks of other health problems like metabolic syndrome too.

4. Evaluating the real benefits of probiotic foods

Many people choose some foods with the best intentions for their gut based on the latest fads they see on the news, like a recent one regarding caffeinated coffee.

But, drinking coffee every day, with its highly acidic content, just to give your gut health a major boost can also lead to more problems (like heartburn) than benefits.

There are no shortcuts when it comes to protecting that critical balance, and you need a healthy gut to take advantage of the slight benefits any food may provide.

However, taking a daily probiotic formulated with multiple strains of bacteria is a proven way to protect the long-term health of your gut.

When you’re on the lookout for a probiotic that’s formulated to help your gut health get back on track, be sure to look for one with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families, plus a prebiotic that feeds the good bacteria in your gut, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

Resources

 

 

Healthy Gut Protocol Instructions

Your Gut Healthy Protocol During the Coronavirus Holiday Season

It’s THAT time of year when our thoughts turn to the holidays and celebrating the end of the old year and the start of a brand new one.

But this holiday season is unlike any other in recent memory, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.

During the Thanksgiving break, the CDC asked Americans to stay put and not travel. So far, there are no indications that future advisories from federal health officials will change very much at least in the short term.

With families staying at home as much as possible and limiting their contact to very small groups of people — appropriately distanced, of course — the last thing you should be worried about is your gut health, right?

Wrong. Here are 3 reasons why you should be:

How are you sleeping?

The health of your gut (and your body) is affected by shifts in your body’s circadian eat-sleep-wake cycles.

Disturbing that schedule — anything from long work hours to getting to know your new PS5 — messes up those natural processes the gut performs on its own while you’re sleeping.

Getting the sleep you need and sticking with a schedule matters, along with eating enough prebiotics, a natural part of whole foods ranging from onions to almonds and jicama.

How are your emotions?

Because many of you are staying home and glued to your work desk (or that shiny new PS5 next to your TV), your emotions may be up, down or all around depending on your mood and the time of day.

It’s certainly understandable, given that we live for our human connections to the outside world.

Maintaining the vital connection that links your brain, intestines, and emotions — your gut-brain axis — helps you regulate those stressors naturally and effectively.

How’s your diet?

If you’re staying home a lot more, your once healthy and balanced diet may have fallen by the wayside, in favor of more highly processed foods full of sugar — real or artificial — and chemicals that disrupt the critical balance of good bacteria in your gut.

5 ways to protect your immune system

This trio of variables all leads up to one very serious problem: A disrupted immune system that can leave you very vulnerable to an array of health problems.

What’s more, a growing number of experts all over the world are coming around to the belief that gut health is the key, not only to stay healthy in the good times, but to reduce your risk of respiratory infections too.

With all of this in mind, here’s your updated gut-health protocol to help you and your family stay safe during this coronavirus holiday season:

  1. Keep the surfaces in your bathrooms and kitchens as clean as possible.
  2. Get on a sleep schedule and stick to it. (Put the PS5 in the closet when you’re not using it.)
  3. About schedules: Take breaks for healthy, balanced meals away from the TV or computer screens and get a little exercise. Even a short walk with your dog helps!
  4. Keep those hands clean with plain soap and water. No antibacterial soap necessary!
  5. Give your gut health a much-needed boost by taking a probiotic, ideally containing multiple strains of beneficial bacteria.

Although your gut is a diverse environment that requires an array of species to do countless things behind the scenes, lots of probiotics still rely on one strain of beneficial bacteria to do the heavy lifting. Simply, these single-strain probiotics just aren’t up to the job.

Our multi-strain probiotic, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic, is fortified with 10 strains of beneficial bacteria from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families, plus a prebiotic (FOS) that feed the good bacteria in your gut.

Protecting your gut by following our updated protocol will help you stay healthy through the holidays and to a better 2021.

References

Microorganisms

Frontiers in Psychiatry

PNAS

Gut Microbiota For Health

UNC Health/WRAL.com

Current Pharmaceutical Design

 

 

photo of sleeping preemie baby

How Multi-Strain Probiotics May Help Preemie Babies

There’s plenty of steps that moms can take to protect the health of their newborn babies. Most experts agree breastfeeding and natural childbirth — both providing great gut health benefits too — sit at the top of that to-do list.

But, even the best-laid plans of moms and pediatricians can fall by the wayside when a newborn arrives prematurely (before the 37th week of gestation).

After a period of decline, preemie births have rebounded upward to nearly 10 percent of all births in the U.S. This creates opportunities for many more health problems among infants, according to the CDC.

Fortunately, moms and pediatricians may have a new weapon to help preemies, according to Cell Reports Medicine: Multi-strain probiotics.

The probiotics-breastfeeding combo

Few hospitals treat preemie babies with probiotics out of caution. Some health experts believe probiotics aren’t used because there’s been little evidence to demonstrate their benefits.

However, a sizeable number of preemies are delivered via C-section, creating many more health obstacles for infants and their developing immune systems in the gut.

That’s where multi-strain probiotics come in. A group of British researchers studied the benefits of probiotics via fecal samples collected from a group of 234 infants in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) over their first 100 days of life.

All infants in this trial were fed human breast milk. In addition, 101 babies received a probiotic containing Bifidobacterium bifidum and Lactobacillus acidophilus. (Both are among the four featured strains in EndoMune Junior Advanced Probiotic Powder recommended for children up to age 3.)

The probiotic difference

The combination of breast milk and multi-strain probiotics was a difference-maker for that group of infants due to the addition of Bifidobacterium bifidum to their tiny bodies, according to researchers.

This strain of Bifidobacterium allowed infants to better digest breast milk, giving their developing immune systems a gentle boost in two important ways:

  1. Bifidobacterium bifidum contains genes that enable babies to better digest specific sugars in breast milk for use as prebiotics. (Prebiotics function as food for the good bugs in their guts.)
  2. pH levels dropped in stool samples, a good sign that health-harming bacteria won’t thrive.

“We hope that our findings will help direct future clinical trials and practice and help clinicians and healthcare professionals make a rational choice when it comes to diet-microbe combinations and ultimately help these at-risk preterm babies,” says Dr. Lindsay Hall, study co-author and a researcher at the Quadram Institute.

Despite the best of plans, however, many moms don’t have a choice whether to deliver their babies prematurely or via C-section. However, EndoMune Junior Advanced Probiotic Powder makes it easy to support the healthy immune development of young infants.

Sprinkling a tiny scoop of EndoMune Junior in your baby’s food or formula once a day can make a big difference!

(Please consult with your pediatrician before starting your baby on EndoMune Junior or any probiotic.)

 

References

University of East Anglia

Cell Reports Medicine

Penn Medicine News

Nature

CDC

 

 

 

 

EndoMune capsules displayed on blue background

Help Ease Your Anxiety with Probiotics

As our country watches the COVID-19 pandemic with apprehension, it’s no surprise that mental health specialists report a sharp increase in the number of anxiety and depression cases. A recent poll taken by the American Psychiatric Association indicates 36% ofAmericans said COVID-19 has made a serious impact on their mental health. If the physical isolation isn’t enough, the pandemic has escalated fears over potential job losses, bankruptcy, acute illness, and death.

Probiotic consumption has been a hot topic for research concerning the gut-brain axis in the past few years. The gut-brain axis (GBA) is the connection between the central nervous system (CNS) and the enteric nervous system (ENS.) That connection links the emotional and cognitive centers of the brain with our body’s intestinal functions. Recent research describes the important role gut microbiota play in these functions.

Probiotics protect against stress

That evidence suggests that probiotics can protect the body against the harmful physical and mental effects of stress. Conversely, it also suggests that probiotics can help regulate mood by keeping the gut microbiome balanced and performing optimally. That means if we want better mood and mental health, we need to take care of our guts.

However, gut bacteria can also be altered by stress, leading to suboptimal gut health. Moreover, other things can reduce the efficiency of our gut function such as antibiotics, intestinal infections, and poor diet – all of which can kill off beneficial or “good” bacteria. A lack of good bacteria in the gut has also been associated with other health problems such as leaky gut, irritable bowel syndrome, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Clearly, this evidence indicates we can’t achieve optimum health unless our guts are maintained at peak efficiency and fortifying our microbiota with probiotics may be a way to both fight and prevent anxiety and mood disorders.

How it works

The bacteria in our gut enhance our resilience to stressful situations by helping seal the gut barrier. When our microbiome is not balanced, its compromised, inefficient gut function can have a negative impact on our overall health (including mental health), due to leakage of hormones and intestinal inflammation.

If the gut lining stays porous for too long, it can allow toxins and toxic bacteria into our body, where some of those toxins can pass through the blood-brain barriers that protect the brain from these types of pathogens.

That’s how a balanced gut microbiome strengthens the gut lining, protects us against leaky gut, and reduces gut inflammation, which in turn plays a role in our mental well-being.

Inflammation also affects the central nervous system and can cause symptoms of depression; but conversely, depression can cause inflammation itself. That’s why having a robust, diverse microbiome is necessary to help control inflammation by strengthening the gut lining, and preventing unwanted toxins from entering the body.

Researchers report that people who suffer from anxiety often have symptoms of gastrointestinal (GI) disorders such as IBS, gas, and diarrhea. These ‘co-occurring disorders’ help cement the conclusions over the importance of the gut-brain axis and its role in many common illnesses.

The link between the gut-brain axis plays a critical role in how healthy we are, and an ever-increasing body of evidence strongly suggests that the microbiota in your gut influences every other aspect of your overall health – including our mental health. Simply put, it seems that now, more than ever, it’s impossible to maintain a healthy lifestyle unless our guts are happy and thriving, and everyone’s first step to better health should be to repair our guts. Consequently, dietary changes and probiotics are some of the methods researchers use to alter the microbiota in patients to help treat anxiety and depression.

Since microbiota has such an important impact on your entire body, it’s not surprising that taking probiotics for your mood doesn’t just benefit our mental health in one way. Probiotics may also help other precursors associated with an increased risk of anxiety:

  1. Helps reduce inflammation, and research suggests that depression may be an inflammatory disease
  2. Increases tryptophan, the happiness hormone, which stimulates natural serotonin production.
  3. Certain probiotic strains, like L. Rhamnosus, help reduce levels of the stress hormone corticosterone.
  4. Some strains of probiotics may possess inherent anti-depressant qualities.

Research on probiotics and the brain-gut connection continues, but the importance of this connection seems clear. Incorporating more probiotic foods in your diet, is a great step to achieving robust overall health. Unfortunately, our fast-paced lifestyles and the ever-present temptations of industrialized food make eating well-balanced, healthy meals hard. The easy answer to that is to help our guts with a probiotic supplement like an EndoMune Probiotic.  Try one today – your body and your mental health will thank you.

EndoMune is 13 Years Strong!

Happy 13th Birthday… To Us!

In the midst of the many distractions the world has thrown at us so far in 2020, it’s hard to believe that EndoMune’s birthday has come around once again!

The world has changed a lot since I started EndoMune in 2007…

When I was a full-time gastroenterologist, I was concerned with helping my patients relieve symptoms related to issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), constipation, traveler’s diarrhea, colic and gas — not to mention boosting immune health — that I felt an urgency to create EndoMune.

All of the reasons to protect your gut health with probiotics still exist today. In fact, there are many more of them to think about…

As the list of problems keep growing, EndoMune’s mission remains constant: Protecting your body’s immune health.

Frankly, that mission has never been more important in my lifetime than it is right now, as we’re facing a global health crisis with the coronavirus pandemic, the likes of which none of us have ever seen.

We’ve taken the steps to ensure that every member of your family has all the support we can provide, from EndoMune Jr. Advanced Probiotic Powder for your baby to EndoMune Jr. Advanced Chewable for your growing child to EndoMune Advanced Probiotic for the grownup gut.

Along the way, we developed EndoMune Metabolic Rescue, a probiotic formulated with your gut and waistline in mind to slow down your appetite, increase fullness and help you lose weight.

You’ve depended on us for your immunity needs for the last 13 years, and we’ve worked hard to earn your trust.

We’re not going anywhere. In fact, we’re just getting started…

To you and yours in good gut health!

Dr. Lawrence Hoberman

Illustration of orange pill bottle on dark blue background

Should You Really Be Taking an Antibiotic?

The last time you visited your doctor, you may have received a prescription of an antibiotic. Did you take the initiative to ask the physician if you really needed that antibiotic you were prescribed?

Often, antibiotics serve as effective tools that solve a multitude of health problems, but only when they’re really necessary. Patients rely too often on antibiotics even for minor problems, like viruses or bacterial infections that don’t even respond these kinds of drugs.

Maybe, you pressured your doctor to prescribe a round of antibiotics just so you could get well and get back to work…

Consider this scary report about the rampant over-prescribing of antibiotics as your latest wake-up call to really consider whether you really need them or not.

No reason to prescribe antibiotics

A team of Oregon-based scientists examined how often patients received prescriptions for antibiotics out of nearly a billion of outpatient visits nationwide.

They examined samples of data culled from the 2015 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, looking for indications whether antibiotic prescriptions were necessary, inappropriate or issued for no documented reason.

Antibiotics were prescribed in about 13 percent of those visits (some 130 million times). A majority of them (57 percent) were judged to be medically appropriate and necessary.

But that’s only part of the story…

The remainder of antibiotics were inappropriately prescribed (25 percent) or issued for no documented reason (18 percent). In other words, many of the 56 million prescriptions for antibiotics in those other categories were probably unnecessary.

Many of those wasted prescriptions were for urinary anti-infective agents, drugs used to treat urinary tract infections (UTIs). What’s more, patients who spent more time with their physicians or suffered from chronic health issues were prescribed antibiotics for no reason.

Probiotics to the rescue

All of these unnecessary prescriptions come with a huge price: Creating an antibiotic-resistant world where these valuable drugs lose their ability to work properly.

The end results are superbug infections stemming from Clostridium difficile (C. diff.) that can be impossible to treat.

The most important takeaway is pretty simple: If you need to take an antibiotic for any reason, be aware these drugs can create imbalances in your gut that harm your immune system and slow down your ability to get well.

Your best weapon to protect your health and help your body do the hard work of healing with a little damage as possible is a probiotic, ideally with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

EndoMune’s powerful formula of 10 beneficial strains of bacteria from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillusfamilies and a prebiotic (that feeds the good bugs in your gut) not only protects and enhances your immune health.

(If you’re suffering from a urinary tract infection, probiotics like EndoMune are a safe and proven way to treat them.)

It helps that very necessary antibiotic you need to do its job to help you get well when you really need it.

Resources

female reproductive system made out of paper flowers

Bad Gut Health Worsens PCOS Risks For Young Women

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a seriously frustrating condition that affects nearly 20 percent of women who want to conceive or experience hormonal challenges during their reproductive years.

Although the root cause of PCOS remains unknown, some experts believe an overproduction of insulin may be a prime suspect. (Up to 40 percent of women with PCOS have also been diagnosed with insulin resistance.)

Too much insulin can increase the production of androgens, leading to acne, irregular ovulation, depression, excessive body hair growth and weight gains.

More evidence is pointing to another telltale sign of PCOS: A gut bacteria imbalance.

An unhealthy imbalance

Scientists established a connection between gut bacteria imbalances and PCOS while examining the health of young girls for a study appearing in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

University of Colorado researchers tracked the gut health of obese and sedentary teens, including 37 patients with PCOS and 21 patients with regular menstrual cycles.

An analysis of fecal samples among teens with PCOS found telltale signs of problems related to imbalances of more bad gut bacteria: Higher levels of testosterone and markers of metabolic syndrome (liver inflammation, the appearance of plasma triglycerides and higher blood pressure numbers)

The good news: Previous research on reducing PCOS symptoms uncovered a simple, healthy solution that can rebalance the gut health of women early in their reproductive years: multi-strain probiotics.

This simple intervention improved issues with depression, lowered testosterone levels and reduced the incidence of extra body hair.

In fact, two of the beneficial bacterial strains used in this previous study from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus families are among the 10 gut-healthy ingredients found in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic.

EndoMune Advanced Probiotic contains 30 BILLION bacterial allies that protect your gut every day, plus a prebiotic (FOS) that keeps the beneficial bacteria in your gut fed and happy.

References

 

Man in white t-shirt flexing his arm.

How Probiotics Support Your Immune System

During the unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic, we’ve seen a renewed focus from our customers on ways to “support your immune system.” The obvious question is: can probiotics, by helping your gut be as healthy as possible, also support your immune system? Although probiotics are proven to help digestion and optimal gut health, recent studies indicate probiotics also protect and enhance your immune system.

The primary reason probiotics, by strengthening your gut health, help your immune system function better is simple. Your gut and immune system have a symbiotic relationship. For example, 70-80% of your immune cells are located in your gut. The health of your gut directly impacts the overall health of your entire immune system.

Healthy guts make healthy immune systems. Conversely, compromised, unhealthy guts erode the effectiveness of immune system function. That leads to potentially more illnesses like common colds, flu, and many other infections – potentially even COVID-19.

Scientists have known for years that our microbiome helps keep overactive immune responses (leading to conditions like IBS and other autoimmune diseases) in check. However, they were still unsure of the exact mechanisms that drive this interaction.

Vitamin A

Emerging research may have found one of the potential answers. Vitamin A seems to help the healthy bacteria in our guts produce beneficial chemicals and activate naturally occurring vitamin A found in the food we eat that helps regulate our immune system naturally. After all, our goal as medical professionals is to help your body defend itself from disease naturally without medications, and the frontline of your body’s war against threats from bacteria and viral diseases is in your gut.

A study led by Shipra Vaishnava, Assistant Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at Brown University, found that when your gut has an adequate level of vitamin A, your gut seems to be able to suppress overactive immune responses. That suggests that instead of your body’s defense system attacking helpful bacteria in your gut and upsetting the natural balance of these necessary flora, they can coexist with each other peacefully; hopefully, leading to a combination of optimal gut and immune system health function.

“A lot of these diseases are attributed to increased immune response or immune activation, but we’ve found a new way that bacteria in our gut can dampen the immune response,” Shipra Vaishnava argues. “This research could be critical in determining therapies in the case of autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s disease or other inflammatory bowel diseases, as well as vitamin A deficiency.”

Simply put, probiotic supplements give your body the ability to absorb nutrients more efficiently, resulting in an improved immune system. That’s why better gut health prepares your body to defend itself against external threats – even during a pandemic.

Diversifying your Gut to Strengthen your Immune System

Since a COVID-19 vaccine may not be available until sometime next year, anyone looking for ways to build up your body’s defenses naturally should make sure your body has a diverse microbiome which leads to a healthy gut. A health gut, in turn, leads to a more robust, healthier immune system

The best way to increase microbiome diversity is to eat foods that support a healthy gut, and avoiding alcohol and highly processed foods. We get it, that’s always hard to do, and is challenging during a pandemic like COVID-19. One easy way to help your gut stay healthy and strong is to take a multistrain probiotic like EndoMune Advanced Probiotics.

However, don’t forget to help your body stay strong by managing your mental health, getting enough sleep, and staying physically active if you can do so safely.

It’s small, daily steps like these that make a big difference in protecting your health.

For more information on how to combat the Coronavirus, read our previous blog:

C oronavirus: Protect Your Immune System

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