Probiotic supplementation prevents high-fat, overfeeding-induced insulin resistance in human subjects

Hulston CJ et al. (2015) Brit J Nutr 113(4):596-602.

doi: 10.1017/S0007114514004097


Aims: To determine whether probiotic supplementation Lactobacillus casei Shirota (LcS) prevents diet-induced insulin resistance in human subjects.

Methods: A total of seventeen healthy subjects were randomised to either a probiotic (n=8) or a control (n=9) group. The probiotic group consumed a LcS -fermented milk drink twice daily for 4 weeks whereas the control group received no supplementation. Subjects maintained their normal diet for the first 3 weeks of the study, after which they consumed a high-fat (65% of energy), high-energy (50% increase in energy intake) diet for 7 days. Whole-body insulin sensitivity was assessed by an oral glucose tolerance test conducted before and after overfeeding.

Results: Body mass was increased by 0·6 (SE 0·2) kg in the control group (P<0·05) and by 0·3 (SE 0·2) kg in the probiotic group (P>0·05). Fasting plasma glucose concentrations increased following 7 days of overeating (control group: 5·3 (SE 0·1) v. 5·6 (SE 0·2) mmol/l before and after overfeeding, respectively, P<0·05), whereas fasting serum insulin concentrations maintained in both groups. Glucose AUC values increased by 10% (from 817 (SE 45) to 899 (SE 39) mmol/l per 120 min, P<0·05) and whole-body insulin sensitivity decreased by 27% (from 5·3 (SE 1·4) to 3·9 (SE 0·9), P<0·05) in the control group. Normal insulin sensitivity was maintained in the probiotic group (4·4 (SE 0·8) and 4·5 (SE 0·9) before and after overeating respectively (P>0·05).

Conclusions: These results suggest that probiotic supplementation may be useful in the prevention of diet-induced metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes.