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Microbiome

Weight loss without the yo-yo effect

Despite effective weight-reduction strategies, individuals fail to maintain the reduced weight. The mechanisms that underlie the weight-cycling-induced phenomena and the influence of the gut microbiota are not well understood. Thaiss et al. used mouse models of weight loss and recurrent obesity and found that obesity-induced alterations to the microbiome persist over long periods of time and enhance the rate of weight gain during secondary metabolic challenge. In addition, low flavonoid levels in post-dieting mice were shown to contribute to the increased weight regain, whereas their therapeutic replenishment ameliorated this susceptibility. The authors propose a model whereby a high-fat diet promotes the growth of flavonoid-metabolizing bacteria, which, in turn, decrease the amount of bioavailable flavonoids, thereby negatively regulating energy expenditure and promoting exaggerated recurrent weight gain.

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    Thaiss, C. A. et al. Persistent microbiome alterations modulate the rate of post-dieting weight regain. Nature http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature20796 (2016)

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Du Toit, A. Weight loss without the yo-yo effect. Nat Rev Microbiol 15, 2 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/nrmicro.2016.189

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