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Eating Bugs Causes Weight Loss – Wait, what?

Eating Bugs Causes Weight Loss – Wait, what?

Man, do we love a good Nature article. Especially with a dry gin martini, shaken (obviously) with a twist in a properly chilled martini glass.  Side note – THIS IS NOT A MARTINI GLASS.  Hipster bars – please, for the love of all things holy, stop putting martinis into something from which only Cinderella would want to drink.  

Where were we?  Oh yes – the article.  In a nutshell, researchers found that people who ingested a newly cultured strain lost weight and their biomarkers were steered in the right direction (i.e. away from diabetes, heart disease and hypertension.)

Granted, this was a small trial (around 40 people) and ran for 3 months, but it was the first of its kind in humans.  The researchers fed pasteurized Akkermansia muciniphila, a bacterium found in the human gut (and formalized in 2004) to these brave volunteers and studied the effects.  And what happened?

  • 30% improved insulin sensitivity (this is good – the opposite, insulin resistance, is what can lead to type-2 diabetes)
  • Reduced insulinemia (too much insulin in the blood) 
  • Dropped cholesterol levels by 9%
  • Decreased body weight (vs placebo) by 5 pounds on average
  • Decreased hip circumference and body fat mass (vs their baseline)

These are relatively stunning findings – literally a pasteurized (i.e. not live) bacteria introduced into the gut orally generated non-trivial changes for pre-diabetic and obese people.  

This type of gut science is just another reason we are so excited about the accelerating research in the space. As new strains are discovered (and we can get our hands on them – c’mon folks – hurry it up!), we shift our formulations in near real-time.  That’s the benefit of seasonal and fresh probiotics – and why we’re happy to be the only ones in the world who do it!