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Benef Microbes. 2018 Feb 27;9(2):209-218. doi: 10.3920/BM2017.0091. Epub 2017 Dec 21.

Effects of fermented soymilk with Lactobacillus casei Shirota on skin condition and the gut microbiota: a randomised clinical pilot trial.

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1 Yakult Central Institute, 5-11 Izumi, Kunitachi-shi, Tokyo 186-8650, Japan.
2 Yakult Honsha Co., Ltd., 1-1-19 Higashi-shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-8660, Japan.
3 RIKEN Innovation Center, Nakamura Laboratory, 2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan.


Several clinical studies have shown that isoflavones and Lactobacillus casei Shirota (LcS) have beneficial effects on skin condition and the gut microbiota, respectively. Thus, we investigated the effects of consecutive intake of fermented soymilk (FSM) with LcS on skin condition and the gut microbiota, as well as isoflavone bioavailability, in a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial as a pilot study. Sixty healthy premenopausal Japanese women received FSM containing a moderate level of isoflavone aglycones and a probiotic LcS, or soymilk (SM) containing neither of them, twice a day for 8 weeks. Skin condition was assessed by a subjective questionnaire for face and morphological analysis of the stratum corneum on the inner forearm. Faecal microbiota and urinary isoflavone were analysed by 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing and high-performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry, respectively. Both the FSM and SM groups had improved skin condition as assessed from scores of overall satisfaction, dryness, moisture, elasticity, coarseness, pigmentation and/or stratum corneum morphology, as well as significantly increased levels of urinary isoflavones during the intake period compared with the pre-intake period, although there were no significant differences between the two groups. There was a significant positive correlation between urinary isoflavone levels and skin questionnaire scores. In contrast, the relative abundance levels of Lactobacillaceae significantly increased and those of Bifidobacteriaceae tended to increase during the intake period compared with the pre-intake period. For the after-intake period they only decreased significantly in the FSM group. The levels of Enterobacteriaceae and Porphyromonadaceae significantly decreased during the intake period in the FSM group. These findings suggest that daily intake of FSM, as well as SM, provides health benefits that improve skin condition via increased levels of isoflavone absorption in the body, and that only FSM beneficially modifies the gut microbiota in premenopausal healthy women.


fermented drinks; isoflavones; probiotics

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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