Decrease of the H pylori colonization in recent years could have caused rise in obesity in western world, according to a lead researcher. The H pylori bacteria are the cause of most stomach ulcers but patients treated for the infection developed significant weight gain compared to those with untreated H pylori colonisation.

"The rate of obesity and overweight were inversely and significantly correlated with the prevalence of H pylori infection," said Professor Gerald Holtmann from University of Queensland in Australia.

For the study, Holtmann reviewed data taken from 49 studies with data from 10 European countries, Japan, US and Australia.

"The gradual decrease of the H pylori colonization observed in recent decades could be causally related to the obesity endemic observed in the western world," Holtmann added.

The study appeared in the journal Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics.


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