The Science Behind the Gut Microbiome and Joint Health

We are learning more and more every day about the associations between gut health and digestion, gut health and mood, and gut health and other bodily functions. Did you know that gut health can impact just about every system in the body? We are more bacteria than we are human[1] – if you consider the total bacteria in your gut compared to the number of cells in your body, the gut wins! The more diversity of bacteria you have in your body, the greater range of healthy by-products you may produce, bugs you ward off, and stresses you sustain. However, if your gut is not working optimally, you may feel the impacts in other parts of your body – like your joints – too. 

Spore-based probiotics + digestion 

There has been a lot of research over the last few years with regards to the role of Bacillus spores in digestive health. We now know that specific Bacillus strains support digestibility, the gut microbiota and the immune system, and growth.[2] 

Bacillus coagulans is one strain in particular that has been shown to have some really fascinating digestion supporting benefits. Spore-forming bacteria like B.coagulans support short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) production in the body. Short-chain fatty acids are produced by beneficial bacteria in your microbiome and they are essential for your brain, body and gut health. SCFAs help fuel the activities of beneficial bacteria, and these organic compounds have many important roles in the gastrointestinal tract and for your health and wellbeing.  

SCFA’s are amongst some of the most important postbiotics currently known. Postbiotics are the metabolic by-products of healthy flora that offer support to the gut and the entire body; these compounds can be prebiotic, immune supportive, and hormonally active[3]

Joint issues? Your gut might be to blame!  

Did you know that there is a connection between your joints and your gut health? If you’re experiencing stiff or uncomfortable joints, intestinal permeability may be to blame. Often, these ills are attributed to the unfortunate effects of aging and some might just chalk it up to arthritis or “old age”. However, what if this discomfort was actually caused by an imbalance from another part of our body? 

When our gut barrier has issues with intestinal permeability, the gut may begin to allow toxins, pathogens, and poorly digested proteins into the bloodstream. Chronic digestive discord, mental fog, body aches, joint discomfort, skin rashes and poor blood sugar regulation are all signs that your body is trying to detoxify toxins. 

In individuals with a genetic predisposition, a compromised gut may trigger the development of certain health issues[4]. Pathogenic bacteria that can lead to a compromised gut barrier and induce various symptoms may be supported by the use of Bacillus subtilis, HU58™, which produces over 12 effective natural microbial fighters!  

Bacillus spores produce nutrients to support joint health 

Bacillus spores not only support improvements in gut and microbiome health, they can support those who experience joint issues, too. Bacillus indicus, HU36™ , Bacillus subtilis HU58™ and Bacillus coagulans have incredible joint supporting benefits! 

Bacillus indicus, HU36™ produces antioxidants that support joint health such as astaxanthin and quinols which provide the basis for antioxidant action. It also produces B vitamins and K2, which are nutrients that can support the decrease of cytokine activity in the joints[5]. These cells can contribute to joint stiffness and discomfort. 

Bacillus subtilis HU58™ produces nutrients such as nattokinase and vitamin K2 during the fermentation process. Nattokinase is one of the most considerable extracellular enzymes produced by B.subtilis. The main interest about this enzyme is due to its fibrinolytic activity and its stability in gastrointestinal tract, making spores like B.subtilis that can create it, supportive dietary supplements[6]

In addition, Bacillus coagulans has immune system supporting effects in animals and humans and research shows that this bacillus strain supports the downregulation of immune responses and the progression of joint related issues[7]

You can support healthy joints by supporting a strong gut microbiome! 

Spore probiotics can offer tremendous support for gut and microbiome health. Well-researched Bacillus spores don’t just provide support with regards to supporting digestion and the microbiome, they have benefits that extend to our musculoskeletal system as well!  



[2] Bernardeau M, Lehtinen MJ, Forssten SD, Nurminen P. Importance of the gastrointestinal life cycle of Bacillus for probiotic functionality. J Food Sci Technol. 2017;54(8):2570-2584. doi:10.1007/s13197-017-2688-3 

[3] Wegh CAM, Geerlings SY, Knol J, Roeselers G, Belzer C. Postbiotics and Their Potential Applications in Early Life Nutrition and Beyond. Int J Mol Sci. 2019;20(19):4673. Published 2019 Sep 20. doi:10.3390/ijms20194673 

[4] Mu Q, Kirby J, Reilly CM, Luo XM. Leaky Gut As a Danger Signal for Autoimmune Diseases. Front Immunol. 2017;8:598. Published 2017 May 23. doi:10.3389/fimmu.2017.00598 

[5] Nu Science Trading, LLC. Colorspore™ Carotenoid Producing Probiotic Bacillus indicus HU36 and its Use as a Functional Food and Dietary Supplements. N.D. 

[6] Dabbagh F, Negahdaripour M, Berenjian A, Behfar A, Mohammadi F, Zamani M, Irajie C, Ghasemi Y. Nattokinase: production and application. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2014 Nov;98(22):9199-206. doi: 10.1007/s00253-014-6135-3. Epub 2014 Oct 22. PMID: 25348469. 

[7] Abhari K, Shekarforoush SS, Hosseinzadeh S, Nazifi S, Sajedianfard J, Eskandari MH. The effects of orally administered Bacillus coagulans and inulin on prevention and progression of rheumatoid arthritis in rats. Food Nutr Res. 2016 Jul 15;60:30876. doi: 10.3402/fnr.v60.30876. PMID: 27427194; PMCID: PMC4947834. 

By Jessica Sanders, Gutsi® Naturopath.