Osteoporosis, a condition in which bones within the human body become brittle and weak, increasing the likelihood for fracture, is highly common within the female population. The population of women suffering from osteoporosis increases exponentially with age, with over 50% of women over 80 suffering from osteoporosis. While there are several effective treatment options already available for osteoporosis, the disease is rarely ever diagnosed until after the first fracture. However, researchers at the University of Gothenburg Sweden have found links for the first time connecting the use of probiotic supplements and the prevention of age-related bone loss among elderly women.
Conducted at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Mölndal, Sweden, 90 women of an average age of 76 were given either probiotic or placebo supplements for an entire year.
At the end of the study, the women who had received the probiotics loss half as much bone mass as the women who had received only the placebo. What's more, the subjects who received probiotic supplements showed no signs of side effects that were not also experienced by the placebo subjects.
While for years scientists have been conducting studies with mice showing the relationship between bone ossification and probiotics, this was the first study that confirmed the effects of probiotics on human skeletons.
Lactobacillus Reuteri 6475, the acting ingredient in supplements in the study, is a strain of bacteria that is found in the human gastrointestinal system. Along with the prevention of de-ossification of the human skeleton, Lactobacillus Reuteri 6475 also has been shown to help improve levels of testosterone and oxytocin during animals studies, as well as skin quality.
One of the conjectures as to why Lactobacillus Reuteri 6475 has been so successful in increasing bone density is because of the fact that this strand of Lactobacillus bacteria lowers the TNF-alpha inflammation marker in the intestine. This, according to Professor Laura McCabe at MSU, helps to prevent bone loss, although the cause for this trend is unclear.
Overall, however, it is clear that there is a connection between the bacterial biome within the gut, inflammation, and consequently, bone loss. These new discoveries only help to further bolster the reasons why here at Betr we take probiotics so seriously. Time and again, probiotics have surprised us with the countless ways that they affect our bodies.