Stop Counting Calories, Count on Probiotics!

A daily dose of probiotics or friendly bacteria may be the real deal when it comes to weight loss.

A landmark study published in Nature found that without the right amounts of friendly bacteria, animals got twice as fat and utilized less calories from the same amount of food than those with the more healthy bacteria ratio.

Who knew that the right kind of bacteria could turbocharge the body’s ability to extract and absorb dietary calories more efficiently?

A ratio of about 85:15 in favor of the good guy probiotics can establish the right balance of power to not only combat pathogens and yeast overgrowth, but to also support weight control.

There are many probiotic foods out there that are healthful. One cup of plain yogurt or kefir, raw sauerkraut or plain miso are some of the best sources. But, while you get millions of colony forming units (CFUs) in probiotic foods, you get billions of colony forming units in high quality probiotic supplements. Sometimes, you need the more potent therapy provided by higher potency products.

My favorite natural sweetener happens to be one that combines both taste and probiotic-power. With nearly 100 trillion microorganisms in our GI tract, it’s not hard to understand how the right ratio of friendly to unfriendly flora can impact weight loss and enhance overall health.

Fructooligosaccharides (FOS) is a sucrose molecule to which one, two, or three additional fructose molecules have been attached. Naturally occurring in chicory, fruits, and in some grains and vegetables, FOS provide your taste buds with the taste of sugar, but the molecules are too big to be digested by the body as sugar.

Since FOS aren’t digested, this sweetener doesn’t affect blood sugar levels.

It also can’t be utilized by Candida albicans, other yeasts, and some bacteria. The best news about FOS, though, is that it provides a benefit that none of the other sweeteners do: it nourishes and promotes the growth of friendly intestinal bacteria such as bifidobacteria and lactobacilli. This makes it a potential good-for-you sweetener for people struggling with yeast infections, parasites, and other gastrointestinal disorders as well as weight loss. The Japanese have been using FOS for several decades with no adverse effects reported, though in large doses, it may cause soft stools or diarrhea.