Would modifying gut microbiota decrease your risk of chronic disease? Here’s what scientists think

The intestinal microbiota comprises bacteria and viruses that reside in the gut. They play a significant role in digestion and protect against specific pathogens. However, several factors such as dietary changes, alcohol consumption, antibiotics, and inflammatory bowel disease can disturb the gut microbiota resulting in imbalances, also known as dysbiosis, which is associated with several chronic diseases [1].

In animal models, studies have suggested that gut dysbiosis can cause metabolic disturbances and weight gain [2]. But can it treat or prevent chronic diseases by modifying the gut microbiota?

Scientists must establish a causal relationship between gut microbiota characteristics and chronic diseases to be a therapeutic target. Although many observational studies have been done, causality has yet to be established.

Therefore, researchers have used a genetic approach called “Mendelian randomization” to determine if there’s a direct and causal relationship between gut microbiota and certain health markers, diseases, and longevity [3].

The study’s hypothesis was to confirm the association between gut dysbiosis and aging-related chronic diseases [4]. However, the results do not suggest a significant impact of gut dysbiosis on metabolic factors and chronic diseases.

Featured product offer
ProHealth Longevity Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor®
  • 675 mg, 90 tablets designed for cellular and gut health.
  • Contains phosphoglycolipids, alpha-lipoic acid, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, creatine monohydrate, and more.
  • Fights free radicals, harmful molecules that can cause oxidative stress and damage to cells.

Although seven associations between certain microbial parameters and chronic diseases associated with aging are likely causal, their effect is minimal and could be due to chance.

The findings imply that gut dysbiosis may not significantly impact the development of chronic conditions. While maintaining a healthy gut plays a vital role in preventing harmful bacteria from thriving in the gut and processing nutrients that the body may otherwise reject, the current approved gut microbiota modulation therapies only work towards preventing specific bacterial infections.

Hence, it is crucial to be careful while using diagnostic tests based on gut microbiota to identify health issues, and any interventions must rely on properly validated evidence.

Featured product offer
Vatellia Life Eaters Digest The Perfect Prebiotic
  • Contains 1,065 mg of a proprietary blend of different ingredients.
  • Has a soothing effect on the digestive tract.
  • Helps optimize nutrient absorption from the foods you consume.

[1] https://www.saccharomycesboulardii.com/gastrointestinal-health/gut-imbalance/
[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8477631/
[3] https://www.nature.com/articles/s41588-021-00968-y
[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7590960/

The information included in this article is for informational purposes only. The purpose of this webpage is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.