Gut Health

VIDEO: Alzheimer's, Dementia & Probiotics - Why Good Gut Health is Critical to Aging Health

Hi guys, this is Kiran Krishnan, research microbiologist, clinical researcher, and your friendly neighborhood super-nerd, here to talk to you about stuff that's really important, which is, aging.



A lot of people ask me about the impact of aging on the gut, or vice-versa. How does the gut play a role in the aging process, and things that we're most concerned about? Number one, dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's. Between Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, these are the number one and number two neurodegenerative diseases in the world. They affect tens of millions of people across the world every year, and they're some of the most scariest diseases. Alzheimer's, of course, because you're losing your mind your identity. Parkinson's you're losing all motor function. Very, very scary diseases, all of which have not had a cure developed so far.



Here is the good news. We've figured out what the actual cause of these conditions are, so in September of 2017, a paper was published showing the primary cause of Alzheimer's. As it turns out, there's a certain gut toxin that's made by about 70% of the bacteria that live in your gut. These are called gram-negative bacteria. They have a toxin in their cell membrane called LPS, lipopolysaccharides. Now, it's perfectly normal to have these bacteria. In fact, they make up the vast majority of your good bacteria as well, and it's perfectly normal to have this toxin.

The problem occurs when your gut is leaking, and it's leaking chronically for a long period of time. This toxin that's released in the gut ends up leaking through the intestinal lining, ending up in your blood, and then can circulate through your body. That's when it causes a problem. This LPS, that's a gut endotoxin. Once it leaks through, can actually circulate through your body, get into your brain and start an inflammatory reaction in your brain that leads to the beta plaquing that's seen in Alzheimer's.

That September 2017 paper definitively showed what the actual cause of Alzheimer's is: A gut-associated toxin that leaks through because of leaky gut. The gut plays a paramount role in whether or not you have a high risk of developing Alzheimer's. Or, if you already are suffering from early signs of Alzheimer's, what your risk is for the disease to progress. That's a really, really important thing to keep in mind.



Now, as it turns out, this same mechanism is behind Parkinson's as well. That same endotoxin, LPS, will leak through, enter your circulatory system and actually go into your central nervous system, and disrupt neurological signaling in your central nervous system. Again, two conditions, the two most prevalent neurodegenerative conditions, both start with the same type of leaky gut. It's really important to address the leakiness of your gut if you're concerned about age-related disorders.



Now, how do you address the leakiness of your gut? We published a paper in 2017 showing that when you use the spore-based probiotics it actually slows down and stops leaky gut by as much as 60% in the first 30 days. There's a significant benefit to adding in your spore-based probiotic. Of course, maintaining a healthy, diverse diet, reducing things that end up killing bacteria in your gut, like reducing your exposure to Roundup and glyphosate, reducing processed foods, which has preservatives and artificial colors and flavors that all act like antibiotics in your gut. Increasing your diet of organic, and even home-grown produce and fruits. All of these things that kind of give diversity in the microbiome also will play a significant role.




Now, I mentioned that word. The D word, "diversity," that's the other key part of it.

A study published this year showed that people that live to age of 90 and above, who tend to be really healthy and have very low risk and no presence of chronic illness, tend to maintain a high diversity in their microbiome compared to people who age even until their 70s with significant number of chronic illnesses.

One of the big, compounding factors of whether or not you're going to have healthy aging, how long you'll live, seems to be the diversity in your microbiome. Those people that were 90-plus and had very healthy lives, and healthy outcomes, their diversity was similar to someone who was in their 20s and 30s. That's why they maintained health for a long period of time. This was a study published by the University of Arkansas. Maintaining diversity becomes paramount.



How do you maintain diversity? Well, diversity in your diet, fasting to some degree weekly. Fasting actually increases the diversity of the microbiome. I do the 16-hour enema and fasting, so I'm fasting for 16 hours a day, and I'm eating all of my calories within an 8-hour period. Then, taking in the spore-based probiotics. We just submitted a paper for publication that shows that the spore probiotics can increase diversity in your microbiome as much as 50% in as little as three weeks. It's quite a significant benefit towards a healthy aging type of outcome.




Again, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, dementia, driven by leaky gut, so you've got to stop the leaking that's in the gut. Overall healthy aging and longevity is driven by increased diversity in your microbiome, so you should focus on increasing an maintaining diversity in the microbiome, and you will age gracefully and beautifully all the way into your deep hundreds. Thank you.