Butyrate, also known as Butyric Acid or Butanoic Acid, is a four-carbon Short-Chain Fatty Acid (SCFA). It is among the three principal metabolites produced in our gut microbiome, including Acetic Acid and Propionic Acid. These three fatty acids account for about 90 to 95% of the total SCFAs concentration in our body.
Short-Chain Fatty Acids are Fatty acids with five or fewer carbon atoms. SCAFs are synthesized via anaerobic fermentation of nondigestible carbohydrates by the good bacteria present in our intestinal cavity.
Butyrate and other SCFAs are essential for our bodies, and have several beneficial effects on our overall health:
- They are an energy source for colonocytes
- Assist in maintaining the diversity and environment of the gastrointestinal tract
- Promote brain health and digestive health
- Influence the immune system
- Provide defensive mechanisms against various diseases
Maintaining the proper production of Butyrate and other Short-Chain Fatty Acids in the body is extremely important for an active and healthy core. Factors that are essential for SCFAs synthesis are a healthy diet and microbial diversity and activities.
The concentration and production of SCFAs and the diversity of intestinal microbiotas can be affected and depleted due to less fiber intake and antibiotics administration. Consuming a healthy, high-fiber diet and supplementations can help overcome this problem by replenishing the microbial diversity and improving SCFA synthesis.
Butyrate supplements are developed in the form of salt and ester derivatives. This is because Butyrate has a foul odor, and that makes it difficult for direct oral consumption.
In this article, we’re going to focus on Butyrate supplementation, a popular and researched Butyrate supplement— Sodium Butyrate.
Table of Contents
What is Sodium Butyrate?
Sodium Butyrate (SB) is the sodium salt of Butyric Acid. It is a derivative of Butyrate produced by an acid-based reaction between Sodium Hydroxide and Butyric Acid.
Sodium Butyrate is constructed as a dietary supplement for enhancing the concentration and efficacy of Butyric Acid. It incubates all the essential qualities of Butyric Acid and is potentially efficient and effective in improving intestinal health.
Functions of Sodium Butyrate
Sodium Butyrate is a supplementation version of Butyric Acid that encompasses all the beneficial features and functions of Butyrate.
- Sodium Butyrate, as a dietary supplement provides anti-inflammatory effects and regulates the gut environment.
- Sodium Butyrate plays the role of nourishment and energy source for the colonocytes and gut microbes.
- Sodium Butyrate suppresses the appetite and regulates energy expenditure and storage functions.
- Sodium Butyrate significantly decreases the activity and entrance of opportunistic and disease-causing pathogens and pathobionts in the GI tract.
- Sodium Butyrate assists in gut-brain axis communications and regulates blood sugar levels and insulin secretion.
- Sodium Butyrate prevents and treats various digestive, heart, and mental disorders like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), colon cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, obesity, leaky gut, and Atherosclerosis.
Effects of Sodium Butyrate on Health
Sodium Butyrate has nourishment, anti-cancer, antioxidant, anti-obesity, anti-inflammatory, and disease-resistant properties.
It is a versatile supplementation product for Butyric Acids’ functional enhancement. It modulates the gastrointestinal, neurological, immunological, and cardiovascular functions of the body. Sodium Butyrate also incubates various health benefits, including:
Energy Metabolism and Microbiome Stability
Sodium Butyrate regulates the energy metabolic processes of the gastrointestinal tract. It provides energy to the colonic cells and helps in energy storage in the form of Triglycerides.
Sodium Butyrate accounts for generating about 70% of the total energy requirements of the epithelial cells. It acts as a nourishing substrate for the colonocytes and the intestinal microbiota. It also helps in maintaining the structural integrity of the intestinal lining that acts as a barrier and separates the gut cavity from the entire body.
The barrier is a tight junction that assists in the uninterrupted flow of vitamins and minerals and prevents food particles, toxins, and pathogens from entering the bloodstream and body.
If the intestinal lining or barriers are damaged and unable to function efficiently, then this may lead to a phenomenon called Leaky Gut.
Leaky gut is a digestive condition where intestinal permeability increases and harmful pathogens and toxins can freely pass through the barrier. Sodium Butyrate fosters a protective effect toward the gut barrier function by maintaining the molecularity and structure of the lining of the gut.
The nourishment Sodium Butyrate provides to the gut microbiota helps in a healthy gut flora diversity, and this helps to improve short-chain fatty acids synthesis and productivity.
Sodium Butyrate creates and stabilizes the gut microbiome homeostasis by keeping the environment acidic enough so that the friendly microbiota can survive and thrive, and deter the harmful and opportunistic microbial species from staying and harming the body.
Recent research conducted via animal studies— ‘The Microbiome and Butyrate Regulate Energy Metabolism and Autophagy in the Mammalian Colon‘ states that the microbiome is essential for maintaining energy homeostasis in the colonic epithelial cells.
While a degenerative intestinal microbiome leads to energy deprivation of colonocytes, they survive by Autophagy, which is they feed on other colonic cells. Sodium Butyrate replenishes the microbiome, reinstates energy perturbation, and inhibits autophagic behavior.
Treats Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD)
Sodium Butyrate has anti-inflammatory properties, and several scientific studies have been conducted to investigate its efficacy in preventing and curing inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
- Crohn’s disease is an IBD that is associated with inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract. It generally occurs in the small intestine and colon; however, it can affect any portion of the GI tract.
Crohn’s disease causes symptoms like abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, anemia, and fatigue. Though Crohn’s disease is incurable, a recent control-group study inferred that administering Sodium Butyrate supplementation can significantly decrease the symptoms and treat the adverse effects of the disease.
- Ulcerative Colitis is a chronic IBD that results in inflammatory problems in the digestive tract. It only occurs in the innermost lining of the large intestine (lower colon) and rectal region.
The primary symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis are rectal bleeding, bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and pain. In adverse conditions, Ulcerative Colitis may develop a risk of colon cancer.
Research conducted on animal models with in vivo parameters procured that Sodium Butyrate is effective for the treatment of Ulcerative Colitis and suppressing the adversity of its symptoms.
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a group of symptoms and an intestinal disorder. It is a chronic disease with symptoms including cramping, gas, abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloating, and constipation.
Present studies suggested that Sodium Butyrate significantly reduced the clinical signs of IBS. However, there are not many inferences regarding the severity of the symptoms.
Prevents Carcinogenic activities
Recent researchers have established that Sodium Butyrate incubates Histone Deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor properties. This is a newfound mechanism property of Butyrate, and numerous studies and researchers are conducted to investigate its full potential.
Sodium Butyrate’s HDAC inhibition phenomenon is researched in several in vitro and in vivo studies. It has concurred that SB represses HDAC’s functional criteria through transcription factors.
Sodium Butyrate modulates HDAC’s inhibition by repressing cell proliferation and inhibiting cell differentiation and gene expression. It also provides antineoplastic or anti-cancer properties by suppressing the development and proliferation of cancerous cells and tumors.
Early studies have shown that a healthy fibrous-rich diet increases the amount of Butyrate in the body. High concentrations of Butyrate help in preventing cancers like colon cancer and colorectal cancer by inducing destructive stress and autophagy of cancerous colonic epithelial cells.
Several human studies have also inferred that the anti-inflammatory behavior of Sodium Butyrate is mediated through HDAC inhibition by repressing inflammatory cytokines activities.
Prevents Obesity and Regulates Insulin Resistance
Animal model research has shown that Sodium Butyrate regulates Glycolipid Metabolism and maintains glucose homeostasis. It controls appetite, blood sugar levels, and insulin resistance by binding to hormone receptors to promote the release of hormones like Peptide YY (PYY) and Glucagon-like Peptide-1 (GPL-1) that regulate hunger cravings and control appetite.
Sodium Butyrate incubates antioxidant, anti-obesity, and anti-diabetic properties. The antioxidant quality of SB reduces oxidative stress, thereby decreasing the accumulation and excess growth of the adipose tissues and food intake to prevent obesity.
Sodium Butyrate plays an important role in controlling the gut-brain axis signal transmissions and controlling the host metabolism activities. It also possesses the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. SB mediates metabolic processes by gluconeogenesis to regulate appetite, insulin sensitivity, and glucose homeostasis.
Consuming a diet rich in roughage content and increasing the Butyrate level by Sodium Butyrate supplementation can improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of obesity and Diabetes Mellitus.
Improves Immunological Functioning and Promotes Gastrointestinal Health
Sodium Butyrate functions as a modulator in maintaining the integrity of the colonic mucosa lining by supporting and strengthening the gut barrier.
It even promotes better functioning of the gut lining junctions and prevents the flow of pathogens and toxins in the bloodstream to maintain gut health.
Promotes Mental Health and Prevents Neurodegenerative Diseases
Clinical practices have suggested that Sodium Butyrate, as an HDAC inhibitor, is used to treat many mental health disorders like bipolar disorder caused due to neurotrophic factors.
Early studies have presented that Sodium Butyrate’s HDAC inhibition properties help it to function as an antidepressant. It improves memory recognition, and cognition and improves long-term memory. An animal model research also inferred that SB improves neurotrophic experiences and reduces depression in Chronic Mild Stress and Maternal Deprivation.
The gut-brain axis communication activities of Sodium Butyrate provide neuroprotective effects on nerve cells and fight against neurodegenerative disorders like Alzihmeres, Parkinson’s disease, and other mental health disorders.
Side Effects of Sodium Butyrate Supplementation
Research was performed to investigate the effects of Sodium Butyrate on health and suggested that it has several benefits and therapeutic effects on various health problems. The best part is that Sodium Butyrate does not procure any comparable side effects.
An animal model study inferred that the administration of Butyrate supplements in a pregnant rat induced insulin sensitivity and obesity in the offspring. There is no human research available in this context; however, it would be better if pregnant women do not use Sodium Butyrate supplementation.
How to Choose the Right Butyrate Supplement?
Several supplementation products are available in the market; however, we would like to recommend a trusted and reliable source for you, so you don’t have to put your body through an experiment process and avoid making a dent in your pocket.
BodyBio is a trusted and reliable organization that produces its biotechnological supplements via a process of critical research, including autonomous and third-party trials for the development of its quality products. BodyBio supplements are globally available on their official website.
BodyBio Butyrate has magnificent results and customer satisfaction. You can learn more about BodyBio and its products from its official website before choosing what supplement is right for you.
Food Sources for Increasing Butyrate Concentration
Butyrate is produced by the anaerobic fermentation of nondigestible dietary fibers and resistant starch by friendly gut bacteria. The major contributors to the production of Butyrate are:
- Members of the Firmicutes bacterial family
- Faecalibacterium prausnitzii
- Eubacterium rectale
- Roseburia spp.
Butyrate is a significant source of energy for the colonocytes. It has protective and therapeutic properties that are essential for many health disorders.
Consuming a fibrous-rich diet has positive effects on the microbiome and SCFAs production rate. A healthy diet is an essential factor for promoting gastrointestinal health and the proper functioning of the digestive system.
Food sources that increase Butyrate production and support the microbiome:
- Fruits (apples, green bananas, Peaches),
- Whole grains (maize, barley, oats cooked and cooled rice), Vegetables (legumes, beans, peas, cooked and cooled potatoes, and sweet potatoes)
- Animals fats
- Vegetable oils
- Dairy (butter, cheese, yogurt, curd)
These are the primary food sources that influence gut health by promoting diversity and activities of the gut-microbiome and production of Butyrate.
Our body and gastrointestinal system functions continuously and may suffer some dysfunction due to an unhealthy diet and abnormal biochemical activities. Regular detoxification and taking a gut break are also crucial for the optimal functioning of the digestive system.
SCFAs are essential for the optimum performance of the digestive system and many other physiological, neurological, immunological, and cardiovascular functions.
Butyrate is an important and versatile SCFA with many beneficial features. It is imperative to maintain your diet and microbiome for the proper production of Butyrate.
Nevertheless, the microbial activities and Butyrate synthesis rate can be affected due to antibiotics and the consumption of a low-fiber diet.
Butyrate synthesis in the body can be improved by adding higher levels of resistant starch and fibrous content in your diet and administering Butyrate supplementations, such as Sodium Butyrate and other forms of Butyrate.
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Any product(s) on this website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Always consult a licensed health care professional before starting any supplement or nutraceutical. Especially if you are pregnant or have any pre-existing medical conditions. Individual results may vary. These are from my own experience and the experience of others and only our opinions.