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Monday, September 22, 2014

The Newest Reason To Keep The Poop Bacteria Happy

It's not just that your intestinal tract has to have a clear path and working enzymes to properly process food, but you have to have the appropriate bacteria in our GI tract. Gut bacteria are very important for many reasons,, and just as we get started on thinking, and language, and movement, we get started on healthy poop bacteria in fetal life. Our diet, our mothers determine what bacteria we have, and the bacteria count and type can be altered when we take , even if those medications are vitamins. The American Gastroenterological Society has an entire division of study linked to learning about this bacteria in our gut known as our gut microbiome. Recent research also explains that hormones can affect the poop bacteria, and conversely the poop bacteria can affect the hormones. Postemenopausal women with diverse gut bacteria exhibit a more favorable ratio of estrogen metabolites, which is associated with reduced risk for breast cancer, compared to women with less microbial variation, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM). Since the 1970s, it has been known that in addition to supporting proper food digestion, the intestinal bacteria that make up the gut microbiome influence how women’s bodies process estrogen, the primary female sex hormone. The colonies of bacteria determine whether estrogen and the fragments left behind after the hormone is processed continue circulating through the body or are expelled through urine and feces. Previous studies have shown that levels of estrogen and estrogen metabolites circulating in the body are associated with risk of developing postmenopausal breast cancer.James Goedert, MD, of the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute (NCI) in Bethesda, MD. “This pattern suggests that these women may have a lower risk of developing breast cancer.”“Our findings suggest a relationship between the diversity of the bacterial community in the gut, which theoretically can be altered with changes in diet or some medications, and future risk of developing breast cancer,” Goedert said, and he went on to say "it may one day offer a target for breast cancer prevention.”
“In women who had more diverse communities of gut bacteria, higher levels of estrogen fragments were left after the body metabolized the hormone, compared to women with less diverse intestinal bacteria,” said one of the study’s authors,
Founded in 1916, the Endocrine Society is the world’s oldest, largest and most active organization devoted to research on hormones and the clinical practice of endocrinology. To learn more about the Society and the field of endocrinology, visit our site at www.endocrine.org. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/EndoMedia.

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