Dysbiosis and Diabetes

By Dr Ernst
September 3, 2022

Gut dysbiosis means there is an imbalance of microorganisms in the intestines. Dysbiosis is also known as intestinal or gastrointestinal dysbiosis. Gut microorganisms are known collectively as gut flora and consist of various strains of bacteria and to a lesser extent include fungi and protozoa.

   The gut flora are essential for digestion and immune functioning. There is more than one type of gut dysbiosis. You can have too much harmful bacteria in the digestive system or not enough good bacteria. Gut dysbiosis may also describe an imbalance in the microbe community in your gut or a lack of microbe diversity.

   Dysbiosis is caused by a change in the population of the various microbes. Unhelpful microbes overpower those that are more beneficial. This can have a snowball effect. Some factors that appear to contribute to a state of dysbiosis include: Antibiotic use (from medications or from the consumption of antibiotic-treated animal products), unhealthy diet (lacking in nutrients and fiber or containing harmful substances), alcohol abuse, secondary to medical illness and high life stress levels.

   Hyperglycemia is a technical term to describe high blood glucose (blood sugar). It is not the same as having diabetes. The easiest way to understand the difference is to know that Hyperglycemia is a symptom of diabetes. Diabetes is a long-term health condition that affects how your body turns carbohydrates into energy.

   When your body digests food, the sugar and starches break down into glucose. Glucose is absorbed in the stomach and small intestines and released into your bloodstream so it can be immediately used for energy or stored as glycogen in the liver. High blood glucose levels cause your kidneys and liver to work harder to remove excess glucose from your bloodstream. Over a long period of time, your liver and kidneys become exhausted and begin to fail.

   If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, insulin levels are likely causing your high blood glucose. Poor diet, stress, medications or hormone imbalances can also lead to hyperglycemia. Causes of hyperglycemia include the following: If you have type 1 diabetes, the dose of insulin or oral medications is not adequate; if you have type 2 diabetes, your body may not be producing enough insulin or may be insulin resistant; eating too much sugar; lack of regular exercise; physical or emotional stress; endocrine conditions that cause insulin resistance such as Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome; gestational diabetes; and certain medications such as steroids or diuretics.

   New research suggests high blood glucose can increase intestinal permeability, alter the gut microbiota and increase the risk of gut infections or even autoimmune disease. Hyperglycemia and leaky gut are connected. The good news is following a healthy diet, keeping tight control of blood sugar and prioritizing your gut health can help protect your intestinal barrier and prevent leaky gut syndrome.

   In the metabolic syndrome, patients are known to have increased intestinal permeability – called leaky gut – and microbes crossing the gastrointestinal epithelium have been found to cause both gut mucosal infections and chronic systemic inflammation. Based on research findings, the researchers hypothesized that hyperglycemia itself drove susceptibility to enteric infections.

   Metformin presents as a sophisticated drug having multiple sites of action and various molecular mechanisms. Regarding the effects of metformin on the gut microbiota, studies have shown that administration of metformin produced several changes in the composition of the intestinal flora.

   Administration of metformin results in improved glucose metabolism, but the way this is achieved is not fully understood, and its implications upon the intestinal flora are incompletely discovered. Analyzing data from the literature, administration of metformin causes the composition to change and therefore the physiology of the microbiota as well.

   Short-chain fatty acids such as butyrate, propionate and acetate are the product of gut microbiota activity, resulting from the fermentation of the carbohydrates that escapes the absorption process, playing an essential role in the process of enhancing intestinal integrity, reducing inflammation and improving the metabolism of glucose and lipids.

   Alterations of the intestinal microbiota are a key element in understanding the pathophysiology of diabetes and to explain the variability in terms of its therapeutic response and complications occurrence in different patients. Metformin exerts a significant influence on the bacterial constellation found in the gut, bringing a significant contribution to restoring its balance. With changes in both composition and function, modulation of the intestinal flora of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus, obtained by various methods, can bring a better outcome of diabetes patients and can improve the morbidity and mortality rates of this widely present metabolic disease.

   Whether you are on the low end of the spectrum with the occasional hyperglycemia or are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you can take back control of your health. It starts with repairing your gut. Here are some natural ways to regulate glucose levels.

   Relieve Your Stress: Stress is a primary cause of hyperglycemia, and your body releases the hormone cortisol. Too much cortisol can suppress the immune system and increase blood pressure and blood glucose levels and contribute to diabetes. Find activities you enjoy that can help take your mind off of the stresses of life.

   Change Your Diet: Most diabetic diets aim for no more than 45 percent of calories from carbohydrates. Remove gluten and dairy from your diet and avoid processed foods and sugary drinks. Alcohol is toxic to all of us and even a sip can lead to high blood sugar. There are delicious foods you can eat if you have hyperglycemia. They include organic blueberries, extra virgin oil, leafy green vegetables, spices like turmeric and cinnamon and wild-caught fish.

   Exercise: Our bodies function at their best when we exercise regularly. Movement helps lower blood glucose, reduces your risk for heart disease, reduces stress and alleviates depression. Start by creating a routine by setting a time every day to exercise and 30 minutes is needed to get the benefits.

   Repair Your Gut: The 4R approach is a proven way to begin repairing your gut. Remove gluten, dairy, corn, soy, eggs, sugar, caffeine and alcohol. Replace by adding supplements such as digestive enzymes to your regimen. Reinoculate your gut with high-quality, high-potency probiotics to re-establish a healthy microbiome. Repair by providing your gut with essential nutrients, including a comprehensive supplement which contains powerful, gut-repairing ingredients.

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