Gut bacteria may have anti-inflammatory effects

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A recent study found that the types of gut bacteria in people with MS may differ depending on whether or not they have symptoms. Design by MNT; Photo by Mark Gibson/Wellcome Collection and Klaus Weidfelt/Getty Images
  • According to a recent study, people with multiple sclerosis (MS) do not have the same composition of gut bacteria compared to individuals without MS.
  • The findings suggest that the types of gut bacteria in people with MS may differ depending on whether or not they have symptoms.
  • The research suggests a potential role for future MS therapies that target the gut microbiota.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease of the brain and spinal cord that causes physical and cognitive impairment. The onset of the disease usually begins during the 20s or 30s.

The initial stage is characterized by the activation of immune cells in the brain and spinal cord, which leads to inflammation and, eventually, the destruction of nerve fibers.

A recent study found that some types of bacteria are more commonly found in people with multiple sclerosis, while others are more common in people without the condition.

The results are published in Genomic medicine.

Dr. Achilles NetranosMD, a neurologist and MS specialist in Beverly Hills, Calif., who was not involved in the study, explained the main findings of Medical news today:

This paper discusses the possible relationship between the gut microbiota and multiple sclerosis (MS). Gut bacteria produce various metabolites, such as short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) and long-chain fatty acids (LCFAs). SCFAs, such as acetate, propionate, and butyrate, have been shown to have immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory effects, whereas LCFAs may have pro-inflammatory and disease-promoting effects. “

The study included 148 Danish participants, with an equal number of people with multiple sclerosis and healthy controls. At the start of the study and two years later, both groups gave blood and stool samples for analysis.

Using genetic testing methods, the researchers determined the presence and types of bacteria in the gut and examined their impact. They noted that some of the changes found in MS patients were due to inflammatory processes.

The researchers highlighted how the presence of certain bacteria may contribute to the overall health of individuals without active MS.

These bacteria are notorious for depressing an overactive immune system, and people with inactive multiple sclerosis had a higher amount of these.

The study also identified specific intestinal bacteria that generate specific fatty acids that the human body cannot produce, called urolithins.

The human digestive system is home to a diverse group of microbes known as the gut microbiome.

“Recent research has indicated that the gut microbiota may be involved in the development of neurological diseases, including MS,” said Dr. Netranos.

“It has been suggested that gut dysbiosis, or an imbalance in the gut microbiota, may alter the ratio of SCFAs to LCFAs, which could contribute to the development of MS.”

This paper found that there are differences in the composition and function of the gut microbiota in individuals with MS compared to healthy controls, and that MS treatment may be associated with changes in the composition of the gut microbiota. More research is needed to understand the role of specific bacteria and their associated metabolites in the development and progression of MS and to determine the possibility of targeted interventions to manipulate the gut microbiota in order to manage the disease.”

– Doctor. Achilles Netranos, a neurologist and MS specialist

Jeffrey GladHe said, who is a practicing integrative medicine and chief medical officer of Fullscript, and was not involved in this research MNT The study provides valuable insights into a disease that is not yet fully understood.

Dr. Jallad added that the new research paves the way for future clinical trials that explore the effect of certain bacteria and compounds derived from gut bacteria that affect the immune system.

Dr. Netranos noted that the findings “provide new insights into the potential role of the gut microbiome in the development of MS and suggest that therapies targeting the gut microbiota may be effective in regulating the immune system and reducing inflammation in patients with MS.”

But Dr. Netranos cautioned that since this is a preliminary study, more research is needed to confirm these observations.

“It is important to consider that the etiology of MS is complex and not fully understood, as both genetic and environmental factors likely contribute to its development,” said Dr. Netranos.

“While targeting the gut microbiota may be a promising therapeutic approach, it is likely that a combination of interventions will be necessary to effectively treat or prevent disease.”

The researchers note that it will still be a while before they can provide specific advice about health-promoting lifestyle or probiotic supplements.

“While this new study finds that patients have different bacteria in their gut compared to healthy individuals, the composition and function of these bacteria may vary based on disease activity and treatment status,” said Dr. Netranos.

“Regardless of whether or not you have a history of multiple sclerosis, the benefits of eating a varied diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and other anti-inflammatory foods are clear and likely to have far-reaching health implications in today’s day,” explained Dr. Glad. the recipient “.

Diet plays a major role in creating a hospitable environment for the good bacteria in the gut. Following an anti-inflammatory diet, similar to the Mediterranean diet, is a good place to start.”

– Dr. Jeffrey Glad, Physician of Integrative Medicine

Dr. Glad noted that the anti-inflammatory diet discourages the consumption of inflammatory foods and drinks such as sugar, processed foods, and alcohol. “It is best to limit or avoid these foods when possible,” he said.

For people with MS or other chronic conditions interested in maintaining gut health, Dr. Netranos offered some general recommendations. Just be sure to talk to your doctor before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle.

Eat a mostly plant-based diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and fiber

These types of foods provide nutrients and prebiotics (indigestible fiber that feeds the good bacteria in the gut) that can support the growth and diversity of the gut microbiota.

Avoid unnecessary antibiotics

Antibiotics can kill both good and bad bacteria in the gut, leading to an imbalance in the microbiota. Only take antibiotics when medically necessary.

Consume fermented foods

Fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi contain live cultures of beneficial bacteria that can help support your gut microbiota.

Do regular exercise

Exercise has been shown to support the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut.

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