Humans are home to trillions of bacteria. A large proportion of these bacteria reside in our gastrointestinal (GI) tract or gut. Evidence is emerging to suggest that our gut bacteria might be implicated in numerous processes particularly those relevant to the digestion and proper absorption of nutrients from our food. Our body is constantly trying to maintain a balance between different types of bacteria. Evidence suggests that some health problems might be linked to different types of gut bacteria. Some bacteria may become more or less common and these variations affect the body.
Gut dysbiosis refers to an imbalance of these bacteria in the GI tract. Bacteria such as Streptococcus and yeasts such as Candida outnumber more beneficial bacteria such as Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus and may adversely affect immunity and metabolism.
The urinary dysbiosis test offered by Analutos looks at various compounds in urine thought to be suggestive of an imbalance of gut bacteria listed below. We are detecting compounds produced by these intestinal bacteria which will be transported to the urine for excretion. High or low levels of individual compounds are not very important as these can be affected by diet, some medications, etc.
The urinary dysbiosis test from Analutos looks at groups of compounds together to see if there is an overall increase / decrease compared with other relevant components.
Benzoate & Hippurate
Bacterial deamination of the amino acid phenylalanine forms benzoate, which is conjugated with another amino acid, glycine, to form hippurate. Elevated levels of benzoate compared to hippurate can indicate low levels of glycine and pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5). Benzoate can be increased due to dietary intake of certain foods.
Phenylacetate & Phenylpropionate
Formed from bacterial action on phenylalanine. Should only be present at background levels.
p-Hydroxybenzoate, p-hydroxyphenylacetate, Tricarballyate
For individuals with normal, healthy intestinal function, these compounds should not appear at more than background concentrations in urine due to the efficient metabolic conservation or recycling of phenyl group compounds of which they are composed. They are produced by microbial action on tyrosine and phenylalanine and are markers of bacterial growth in the gut. Tricarballyate binds to magnesium in the blood which can result in magnesium deficiency.
DHPPA is a by product of the bacterial metabolism of tryptophan, phenylalanine and or tyrosine. Confirmed overgrowth of Clostridium show elevated levels of this compound. Raised levels of this compound indicate overgrowth of Clostridia and /or Pseudomonas.
Tartarate, Citramalate, Arabinose and Arabinitol
These compounds are produced by gut yeast and fungi. Tartarate (tartrate), Citramalate, are closely related to human metabolites and can block human metabolic pathways.
Produced by bacteria in the upper bowel. Normal population of bacteria will only produce low levels of this compound. Most of the indole (of which indican is a type) produced by bacterial action in the gut is eliminated in the faeces. The remainder is absorbed, metabolised and excreted in the urine. High levels of indican in the urine suggests overgrowth of poor bacteria producing more indican than can be broken down.
Tryptophan, Phenylalanine, Tyrosine
Precursors of the above compounds. High or low levels of these amino acids can affect the gut dysbiosis markers.
Used in conjunction with specific gravity to determine the concentration of the urine
The pH or acidity of the urine affects the results obtained from the analysis
Homocysteine is an amino acid. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. High levels of homocysteine in the body have been linked to an increased risk of various conditions including: cardiovascular disease, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, pregnancy complications, osteoporosis and diabetes. High levels of homocysteine have also been linked to developmental conditions such as autism and behavioural issues such as poor concentration although the link and relevance is still under investigation.
Relevant to heart health, homocysteine is thought to be able to narrow the lining of the arteries causing blood flow problems and may make blood clot more easily. Research suggests that people who have very high levels of homocysteine are at an increased risk of coronary artery disease.
As with many compounds and functions throughout the body, homocysteine is one part of a metabolic pathway which includes other amino acids, methionine and taurine, as well as other important compounds such as glutathione and S-Adenosyl Methionine.
S-Adenosyl methionine is suggested to be a natural antidepressant, as well as helping protect the body from arthritis, osteoporosis and liver disease.
Glutathione is one of the body’s best detoxifiers through its actions on mopping up free radicals and reducing the effects of oxidative stress. It is with these processes in mind that glutathione has also been suggested to have anti-aging properties.
Taurine is another important antioxidant, associated with lower blood cholesterol, reductions in body weight, and reductions in very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the so-called bad cholesterol, which are major risk factors in coronary heart disease. Individuals, who are at risk for a deficiency of L-Taurine, include vegetarians and women of all ages. It is believed that women are more at risk for a L-Taurine deficiency, because of the presence of female hormones that restrict the production of L-Taurine within the body.
Homocysteine tests are provided as standard by many laboratories around the world. Analutos tests for levels of urinary homocysteine but also for all the compounds in the metabolic pathway. Our homocysteine pathway test not only shows if abnormal levels of compounds are present in urine but also by comparing the levels of the various compounds we can find the possible reasons why. These causes are usually low levels of vitamin B6 and B12 or folic acid all of which can easily be treated with supplements.