E.coli a Possible Cure for the “Sweet Tooth”

Escherichia Coli or simply E.coli bacteria that are mainly found in the gut can help lower the cravings for sweet things, latest report suggests.

E.coli bacteria are mainly associated with causing harm in the human body and are linked to ailments such as Urinary Tract Infection (UTI), Pneumonia, Diarrhea, Respiratory illness and other diseases. A high concentration of the bacteria affects the intestinal walls and respiratory tracts and may lead to inflammation.

Researchers have discovered that the same bacteria which may bring harm to the respiratory system, gut, and other organs may be also the key to fighting craving or desire for sweet foods.

Though basically associated with negative effects, the bacteria also play an important role in the body. They assist the digestion of food in the intestines, enhance the health of the gut, and stop other harmful bacteria from thriving in the gut. sweet_tooth

The latest news is that E.coli may be the solution to obesity or overweight, a problem that currently affects one-third of the people in America.

Researchers from the Neuroscience and Regenerative Science department of Augustana University are planning to release a report that shows the bacteria lower the appetite for sweet foods.

The study was performed on lab mice where the researchers introduced a small amount of E.coli that had been detoxified. The mice’s preference for sweet things was documented before and after the introduction of the bacteria.

According to Dr. Lynette McCluskey, the co-author and fellow-researcher from Augustana University, it was observed that after one week, the mice’s appetite declined and they were no longer interested in sugary food.

Closer scrutiny revealed that the bacteria stimulated more production of a satiety hormone knows as leptin which tricks the brain into thinking that it has had enough of sweet food. This happens after the number of receptors responsible for wanting sweetness decline.

Focus was set on a specific type of E.coli known as lipopolysaccharide (LPS) that is most responsible for the desire for sugary foods. It was detoxified so as to reduce the negative effects it usually has on the digestive system particularly the gut.

The bacteria target TLR4 (toll-like receptor 4) which are mostly found on the surface of immune, taste and gut cells, and appear to create a coating over the receptors blocking the affinity for the sweet foods.

Though the study is still ongoing, the results paint a promising picture especially when it comes to winning the war against obesity and overweight.