Helpful bacteria live in the human gut and scientists are beginning to explore their possible use for helping to control Type 2 diabetes. These bacteria are known as probiotics and are given as supplements for a variety of illnesses.
In May of 2017, the Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism reported on a study pooling the results of eighteen earlier studies and analyzing them as one large work. A total of 1056 participants were included, …
- 527 taking probiotics, and
- 529 not using probiotics.
The study participants taking the probiotics showed lowered …
- blood sugar readings,
- insulin, and
- HbA1c levels.
From these results, the investigators concluded probiotics could be useful for reducing blood sugar levels, insulin levels, and HbA1c levels in people with Type 2 diabetics.
The following month the Journal of Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders reported on a study completed at the University Medical in Yazd and several other research facilities in Iran. Seventy people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes were divided into a treatment group and a placebo group …
1. The treatment group consumed 500 mg per day of supplements containing …
- "good" bacteria,
- two types of sugar, and
- B vitamins.
The bacteria were members of the lactobacillus family, the bifidobacterium family, and Streptococcus thermophilus.
2. The placebo group took capsules containing starch and B vitamins. After nine weeks the placebo group had more albumin in their urine and higher HbA1c levels than the supplemented group. Albumin in the urine is a sign of kidney disease. From this information, it was concluded 500 mg per day of probiotic supplementation over a period of nine weeks could improve blood sugar control and kidney health.
The lactobacillus family of bacteria gets its name from the fact it can break down lactose, a sugar found in dairy milk. Lactobacillus acidophilus makes vitamin K. Some patients use it to treat their …
- lactose intolerance,
- vaginal infections,
- irritable bowel,
- brain problems,
- asthma, and
- high cholesterol,
although the evidence for its effectiveness is sketchy.
The bifidobacterium family is thought by many to be helpful with …
- irritable bowel syndrome,
- ulcerative colitis, and
- ileal pouch (outpouching of the small intestine).
It is also used to promote vaginal health.
Streptococcus thermophilus is used to boost the human immune system and help colon health. It is thought possibly to prevent colon cancer. It is sometimes used with chemotherapy to help protect the digestive system from the treatment. It is also used to replace good bacteria killed off by antibiotics.