Most recent update: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 15:27

Bariatric News - Cookies & privacy policy

You are here

Gut bacteria

Study links Helicobacter pylori treatment to weight gain

The rate of obesity and overweight were inversely and significantly correlated with the prevalence of H pylori infection

People treated for the Helicobacter pylori infection developed significant weight gain compared to subjects with untreated H pylori colonisation, suggesting that treating the bacteria is linked to weight gain, according to research published in the journal Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics.

There is currently a debate over the effect of H pylori infection on BMI with  a recent study demonstrating that patients who underwent H pylori eradication developed significant weight gain as compared to subjects with untreated H pylori colonisation.

Therefore, the researchers wanted to assess the association between H pylori colonisation and the prevalence of overweight and obesity in developed countries.

They undertook a literature search and identified 49 studies with data from ten European countries, Japan, the US and Australia. The mean H pylori rate was 44.1% (range 17–75%), the mean rates for obesity and overweight were 46.6 (±16)% and 14.2 (±8.9)%. The rate of obesity and overweight were inversely and significantly (r=0.29, p<0.001) correlated with the prevalence of H pylori infection.

Gerald Holtmann

"The rate of obesity and overweight were inversely and significantly correlated with the prevalence of H pylori infection," said lead author of the study, Professor Gerald Holtmann, Director of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane, and Associate Dean Clinical at the University of Queensland, Australia. "The gradual decrease of the H pylori colonisation observed in recent decades could be causally related to the obesity endemic observed in the Western world".

It is estimated that 50% of the global population may be infected with H pylori however, only 20% of infected people experience symptoms. The bacteria is the most common cause of stomach ulcers.

Want more stories like this? Subscribe to Bariatric News!

Bariatric News
Keep up to date! Get the latest news in your inbox.