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Stress Affects Bacterial Balance in Gut and Immunity

According to a research conducted by the scientists from the Ohio State University, stress might change the balance of the bacteria present in the gut. Exposure to any kind of stress can lead to a change in the composition, number and diversity of the gut microorganisms. The bacteria become less diverse in the intestine during stressful conditions. The number of harmful bacteria like Clostridium increases. The bacteria also affect the proper functioning of the immune system. This explains why the immune response gets dysregulated due to stress.

According to Micheal Bailey, the lead author of the study, the changes in the body have profound effect on the physiological function. When the number of bacteria was reduced in the intestines with the help of antibiotics, the researchers were able to prevent some of the stress effects on the immune system. Thus, the study proves that stress changes the levels of bacteria in the gut and also any kind of alteration can impact the immunity.

The gut bacteria is associated with many diseases such as asthma or IBD, the study might be able to throw some light as to why these conditions worsen during stressful times. The study is published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity.

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