While you’re stuffing your face with stuffing, you’re kept a close eye on the dessert table, especially anyone going near your Mom’s once-a-year specialty: Her chocolate crème pie. You know you want a slice, and it’s merely a matter of time before you get it.
After finishing those second helpings, however, that satisfied feeling of fullness, known as satiety, has started to kick in big time, and you’re losing the appetite for that delicious slice of pie…
If you want to blame someone or something for this holiday pie fiasco (besides yourself), look no further than the bacteria in your gut, according to a recent study published in the medical journal Cell Metabolism.
The study offers another interesting twist on the gut-brain axis, the biological connection that links the gut, brain and emotions as one.
It’s known that gut hormones send biological signals to the brain when your body is hungry or full, yet little was known about the process until this study conducted on mice by European researchers.
Overall, scientists discovered after 20 minutes of consuming food — about the same amount of time it takes for humans to feel tired or full after a meal — E. coli bacteria residing in the guts of mice produced different kinds of proteins than before eating.
Injecting mice with small amounts of bacterial proteins created after feeding also lowered of appetites of hungry and free-fed mice too.
More tests of bacterial proteins backed up this association, first by identifying the release of a peptide (YY) linked to satiety, then detecting the production of specific DNA (CipB) in the gut also linked to fullness.
“We now think bacteria physiologically participate in appetite regulation immediately after nutrient provision by multiplying and stimulating the release of satiety hormones from the gut,” says senior author Dr. Serguei Fetissov, according to a press release.
Paying closer attention to satiety is a good thing. Overdoing it on high-fat foods too often can force our gut health to compensate by cutting back on the diversity of bacteria, thus leaving our bodies more vulnerable to disease.
Fortunately, you can protect your gut-brain axis as well as the diversity of bacteria in your gut by taking a probiotic, ideally one like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic that contains multiple strains of beneficial bacteria.