If you drink a lot of alcohol, it may be the fault of your gut

If you drink a lot of alcohol, it might be your gut's fault

The gut is referred to as the second brain, as many now knows that the two organs are connected to the point of influencing our emotions. We have also just discovered that the intestinal microbiota has a responsibility in our alcohol consumption.

A small glass, and then another one, and why not a next one… You are aware that your alcohol consumption is important. We are educated in moderation and knowing how to make the right decision to say no to yet another drink. In reality, it would be more complicated for some, especially if their intestinal microbiota corresponds to that identified by Spanish researchers from the Complutense University of Madrid. Scientists have indeed discovered that a certain type of microbiota dictates our behavior when faced with the intoxicating substance.

To find out, they interviewed 507 young volunteers who not only answered questions about their drinking habits but also provided their faeces. These last unsavory samples were indeed necessary to situate them on the Bristol scale, a visual cue developed by the university of the British city to classify human stools into seven families. Bacteriological samples were also taken.

So much organic evidence to compare them to the same samples from volunteers not drinking alcohol. By performing analyzes on male rats on which were transplanted faecal samples from alcohol-dependent animals, it was found that their voluntary intake of alcoholic substances was increased. Moreover, when the rats received a dose of antibiotics, which act by preventing the development of bacteria, the scientists were able to reverse the trend and reduce the consumption of alcohol.

It remains to identify precisely the bacteria responsible for formatting the particular intestinal microbiota of heavy alcohol consumers – it is still necessary to determine from how many glasses an alcohol consumption is considered important.

However, the Spanish scientists believe that these recent discoveries already make it possible to consider probiotics, prebiotics but also synbiotics as effective treatments for intestinal disorders caused by alcohol.

In 2018, American researchers for their part made the link between alcohol and microbiota… from the mouth. Women who drank more than two glasses a day and men more than three a day were distinguished from non-drinkers by the proliferation of bad bacteria in the mouth, some of which could affect the health of the gums, among other things.


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