2017-06-07 16:57:02 UTC

Gastroenterology Study Finds Prebiotics Reduce Body Fat in Overweight Children

June 7, 2017

AGA microbiome expert Dr. Geoffrey A. Preidis weighs in on this new study and why the findings are clinically relevant.

A new Gastroenterology article in press finds that prebiotics reduce body fat in children who are overweight or obese by altering their gut microbiota. This research provides an example of how we can manipulate the human gut microbiota to restore health and treat diseases, which has been an area of widespread interest and increased research focus.

Geoffrey A. Preidis, MD, PhD, an expert from the AGA Center for Gut Microbiome Research and Education, help put this new research into perspective in an AGA Communty post

“This is a well-designed trial that demonstrates how a prebiotic (a non-digestible dietary component that benefits the host by modulating the microbiota) could potentially help combat one of the most prevalent and costly conditions afflicting children in the developed world — overnutrition. This study is important because the authors link improved body composition to alterations in both gut microbial populations and microbiota-dependent factors including bile acids that influence body weight, although the exact mechanism of action of oligofructose-enriched inulin [the prebiotic used] remains unknown. Additional studies are needed to determine whether the beneficial effects persist after discontinuation of therapy, and whether they may be generalized to children outside of this single-center Canadian population or to overweight/obese individuals with comorbidities such as diabetes and liver disease.” 

AGA members can respond to the post on the AGA Community.

Read a summary of this microbiome research, or access the full article on the Gastroenterology website

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