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The Key to Weight Loss

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In a study published this August in Nature, researchers revealed that the inner ecology of those who are overweight is up to 40% less diverse than those who are at a healthy weight. (1)

Your inner ecology predicts your waistline and your metabolic health.

Less diversity means fewer good bacteria and fewer species of bacteria overall.

Oluf Pederson, professor and scientific director at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Copenhagen, explains: "Not only [do they have] fewer intestinal bacteria, but they also have reduced bacterial diversity, and they harbor more bacteria, causing a low-grade inflammation of the body."

To avoid carrying extra weight and in order to be healthy, the gut needs a rich and flourishing inner ecosystem. A limited range of intestinal microbes means that some bad bugs—like Candida—can get the upper hand.

Beneficial gut bacteria help us thrive in life—rather than just survive. For example, good gut bacteria:

  • Strengthen the immune system
  • Produce essential vitamins, like vitamin K2 and B vitamins
  • Communicate with the nervous system and the hormonal system
  • Produce a wide range of bioactive chemicals—like neurotransmitters—that enter the bloodstream and affect your biology

Can Gut Bacteria Predict the Risk of Disease?

One essential key to healthy weight loss starts by replenishing the gut with good bacteria. Bacterial diversity in the gut can help to decrease cholesterol, fat tissue, and inflammation.

According to researchers, gut diversity can help to predict your risk for diseases that are associated with obesity—like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

The diversity of your inner ecosystem may be a valuable biomarker.

In order to assess the inner ecosystem, researchers use genetic analysis. In other words, they collect and identify the genetic code of microbes living in the gut. So far, genetic analysis gives scientists the most accurate picture of the human inner ecosystem.

Low gene diversity—or not enough variety in the gut—is linked to an increase of inflammation in fat tissue. In fact, whether healthy or overweight, those with low gene diversity are more likely to develop chronic disorders, such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

When the body is overloaded with sugar and inflammation, the good bacteria in the gut starve. Bad bacteria take over, and the diverse inner ecosystem of the gut becomes a monoculture dominated by just a few aggressive microbes.

Anti-inflammatory species of bacteria—like Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus—are associated with rich, highly diverse inner ecosystems.

The bottom line: Your inner ecology predicts your waistline and your metabolic health.

Foods That Rebuild Your Inner Ecosystem

Chronic weight gain is considered to be one of the most dire health problems of the 21st Century. In 2013, the American Medical Association classified obesity as a disease, which has doubled in the last 30 years.

In a second study, researchers monitored the inner ecosystem of 49 volunteers as they tried to lose weight. Their diet was high in fiber from the plant kingdom, such as fruits and vegetables. (2)

According to researchers, a high-fiber diet may change the bacterial makeup of the inner ecosystem—making it more diverse.

The increase in diversity was associated with a decrease in fat tissue, cholesterol, and inflammation. Jeffrey Cirillo, a professor at Texas A&M Health Science Center's department of microbial pathogenesis and immunology, explains that these studies “suggest that management of our own diets can improve the richness of the flora within our guts and decrease our chances of becoming obese.”

Restore Your Inner Ecosystem, Lose Weight, and Feel Great!

Long-term dietary habits dramatically shift the health of the gut—and the entire body.

Meals rich in plant fiber act as a prebiotic in the gut, feeding the good bacteria that live there. Sour fruits, starchy and non-starchy vegetables, legumes, and grain-like seeds can encourage the growth of anti-inflammatory bacteria. (3) These foods can even change the entire inner ecology of the gut, making it more diverse.

Probiotic foods, like fermented vegetables and probiotic beverages, within the Body Ecology Diet—an 80% plant-based diet that avoids pro-inflammatory foods like sugar, gluten, and casein—aid in weight loss by balancing your inner ecosystem.

What To Remember Most About This Article:

Overweight individuals may have a 40% less diverse inner ecology compared to those at a healthy weight. Less bacterial diversity in your gut indicates fewer good bacteria needed to improve overall health.

You can make weight loss easy on yourself by supporting your inner ecosystem first of all. Friendly gut bacteria will aid in natural weight loss and will also strengthen your immune system, produce essential vitamins, and communicate with your nervous system. A lack of gut diversity can also increase your risk of disease— regardless of your weight.

Chronic weight gain is a serious health concern that can be remedied by making changes to your diet, starting with the principles of the Body Ecology Diet. Enjoying fermented vegetables and probiotic beverages will rebuild your inner ecosystem with good bacteria and support weight loss as an added bonus!

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  • The Body Ecology Diet

    The Body Ecology Diet

    Restore and Maintain the Important "Inner Ecology" Your Body Needs

    • Plan meals with dozens of delectable recipes, menus, and detailed shopping lists!
    • Learn simple principles of proper eating and food combining to rebalance your internal ecology
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    • Develop strategies for controlling your urge to snack and for dining away from home


  1. Le Chatelier, E., Nielsen, T., Qin, J., Prifti, E., Hildebrand, F., Falony, G., ... & Pedersen, O. (2013). Richness of human gut microbiome correlates with metabolic markers. Nature, 500(7464), 541-546.
  2. Cotillard, A., Kennedy, S. P., Kong, L. C., Prifti, E., Pons, N., Le Chatelier, E., ... & Ehrlich, S. D. (2013). Dietary intervention impact on gut microbial gene richness. Nature, 500(7464), 585-588.
  3. De Filippo, C., Cavalieri, D., Di Paola, M., Ramazzotti, M., Poullet, J. B., Massart, S., ... & Lionetti, P. (2010). Impact of diet in shaping gut microbiota revealed by a comparative study in children from Europe and rural Africa. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(33), 14691-14696.

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  • Donna

    I have been following the BED food program and I have lost 9 lbs in the last week and a half. I also make my own kefir and kombucha. I drink a kefir shake every morning and I signed up for the BED recipes and eat that everyday. I eat to 80% like she says and don't cheat. I find this program the easiest plan to follow. I have Adrenal Fatigue (severe) and I am allergic to dairy and gluten. I started drinking the milk kefir because I read that it can correct dairy allergies. I have been lucky so far it is working for me. I fermented it almost to cheese for a while to give my system the most predigested milk possible. I have not drank milk in 20 yrs so to my suprise my nails got better, my skin looked better and my muscles didn't hurt anymore. I just made my first batch of sour kraut and my husband who hates kraut liked it. I used water kefir to start it and it is delicious. I don't eat any sugar now. I use the Lankto and BED stevia. My friend Esther recommend me the book and I owe her big time. I had pnemonia over the holidays and decided that enough was enough and I can't be happier that I started BED.

    Fort the girl jessieann you may have other things going on physically that need to be addressed. Also portion size is a big deal even eating this way. For me the Adrenal Fatigue was making me fat. I use to say I was the healthiest fat person because no matter what I did I gained weight. Try her recipes they are delicious. I have not found one I don't like yet.

    Donna P.

  • Shari

    Ja, you should read the whole Body Ecology book. It recommends eating only to 80% full, avoiding all sugar, and talks about how to food combine. I've lost weight relatively easily and I'm not the best at following all the suggestions, but I stick to the recommended food ingredients (I admit to eating very little of the fermented foods-I can't stand them). Good luck. - Shari

  • Theresa

    I have been following the South Beach Diet - which is a high fiber diet, and try avoid eating pasta/bread/rice/fruits in the first month for Phase 1. Then gradually introduce wheat, fruits, rice from the second month onwards. Lost lot of belly fat in the first month since by not eating carbohydrates, the body burns the existing fat from our system.

  • Jessieann

    I am over weight mostly with the dreaded belly fat. I eat fermented foods daily, I take both Soil based pre/probiotics and Bio-doph 7 plus which is 7 strains. I drink a green smoothie daily which consists of blueberries, zucchini, pure beef gelatin, chia seeds, Greens First, Maca rt (every other day) Reishi & Chaga mushroom & Astragalus tea. I eat freshly picked vegetables from my garden of a variety of colors all organic. I walk daily. I usually drink 1/2 gallon of water daily. Seldom eat grains but when I do it is Quinoa. So please don't tell me my inner ecology is causing my fat gut.
    Give me another reason. ja

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