It is well known that probiotics are beneficial for the digestive tract. Indeed, these beneficial gut bacteria outnumber cells in the body (and their genes GREATLY outnumber our own genes).
Scientists have taken the research of probiotics beyond the gut lately, finding that their effects are far reaching. A recent study in pregnant women found that daily administration of two probiotic strains—Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Bifidobacterium lactis—along with dietary counseling during the first trimester of pregnancy resulted in reduced waist circumferences six months after giving birth.
Three groups were involved; one taking probiotics along with counseling, one taking a placebo along with counseling, and one taking a placebo without counseling. The probiotic + counseling group had the lowest percentage of women with waists measuring over 31.5 inches at the end of the study.
It has long been known that probiotics are beneficial during pregnancy, both for mom and baby, and studies continue to support their many advantages. I recently talked about probiotics protecting against development of gestational diabetes.
Research of probiotics and metabolic outcomes like abdominal fat and weight loss is relatively new. With obesity rates at an all-time high, going back to the gut in order to build a strong foundation of health is essential. Whether pregnant or not, when our guts are out of balance, the rest of the body suffers. Begin with balancing the gut, and good health for the rest of the body will follow.