Bacteria has a negative reputation, yet there are some forms that are beneficial to the body, such as probiotics. Probiotic pills and certain fermented meals contain these “good bacteria” and other living microbes. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, probiotics are comparable to the microorganisms that reside in the stomach and, when taken in sufficient doses, may aid some people with digestive disorders (NCCIH).
Over the last two decades, probiotic supplements have been increasingly popular. “Probiotic research has expanded in the last 15 to 20 years,” says Niki Strealy, RDN, LD, a registered dietitian nutritionist specializing in digestive health in private practice in Portland, Oregon. “As we learn more, we realize just how much more there is to learn.” probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
While 3.9 million people in the United States regularly take probiotic supplements, according to a report published in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology in February 2019, the effectiveness of these supplements can vary because those sold as dietary supplements do not require approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Probiotic supplements vary greatly in terms of bacteria strains and dose, making it impossible to compare them.
How Can Probiotics Aid Digestion?
Probiotics appear to assist keep the digestive system in balance and help the body get back on track after a bout with “bad” bacteria, according to the NCCIH. Researchers are still discovering how probiotics function and at what levels they are helpful. “We know probiotics offer a lot of advantages,” Strealy explains. “These include enhanced lactose digestion, reduced digestive symptoms such gas, bloating, discomfort, diarrhea, and constipation, and improving carbohydrate digestion and vitamin production.” probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Food vs. Supplements for Probiotics
Probiotics are naturally found in fermented dairy products like milk, yogurt, and kefir, as well as meals like fresh kimchi and sauerkraut. It’s fantastic to include these foods in your normal diet, but keep them cold and uncooked, as heating them destroys the beneficial bacteria. “Eating fermented foods is a good method to get helpful microorganisms into your digestive tract,” Strealy says, “but it’s impossible to tell how many microbes you’re getting.” probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Strealy frequently suggests taking a probiotic pill to people who experience stomach issues. If you take a probiotic pill for a certain condition and don’t see results after four to six weeks, Strealy recommends switching to a different brand with various germ strains. Strealy suggests that Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium (bacteria), and Saccharomyces boulardii (yeast) are generally safe.
Probiotics Could Help With These Digestive Issues
Although additional research is needed to discover the appropriate strain(s) for each illness and the most effective dosage, preliminary evidence suggests that probiotics may be beneficial in the treatment of a range of gastrointestinal disorders, including: probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Diarrhea: Researchers from the Cochrane Collaboration discovered that consuming probiotics helped diarrhea go away one day sooner than it would otherwise in a meta-analysis published in 2019. “Probiotics can help to halt diarrhea by slowing gastrointestinal contractions,” says Strealy.
Constipation: According to a meta-analysis published in the Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics in July 2017, consuming probiotics improves constipation in the elderly by up to 40%. Probiotics can help with constipation by reducing transit time and making feces softer and easier to pass, according to Strealy. probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Gassiness, cramping, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): Probiotics can help persons with IBS improve lower gastrointestinal symptoms like discomfort and cramping, bloating and gas, and diarrhea, according to a study published in Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics in February 2018. probioticseverything.com
Lactose intolerance: According to a study published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition in June 2019, there is an overall beneficial link between probiotics and lactose intolerance, albeit some probiotic strains are more efficient than others.
IBD stands for inflammatory bowel disease, which includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, two digestive illnesses that can cause pain, diarrhea, and bloody feces. Probiotics may help shift gut flora from inflammatory to anti-inflammatory, according to a study published in Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine in May 2018. However, further research is needed to determine which types of probiotics can aid IBD and at what dosage.
Diarrhea is a common side effect of antibiotics since the medicine destroys both healthy and bad bacteria in the intestines. Antibiotic-associated diarrhea was shown to be roughly half as prevalent in individuals who took probiotics with antibiotics, according to a meta-analysis published in the journal Antibiotics in December 2017. probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Antibiotics can also trigger an infection in the large intestine caused by the bacteria Clostridioides difficile (C. diff. ), which causes diarrhea. A meta-analysis published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews in December 2017 concluded with moderate certainty that taking probiotics with antibiotics can reduce the risk of diarrhea caused by C. diff., and that taking probiotics with antibiotics is safe for most people, except for those with severely weakened immune systems.
A nutritionist can assist you in choosing a reliable brand of probiotic supplement to alleviate a specific digestive ailment. Strealy also recommends going to the International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics for information on how to pick a probiotic that has been studied for the illness you’re attempting to cure, such as IBS. probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic
Probiotics can be a healthy approach to help keep your digestive system on track, though finding what works for you may take some time. probioticseverything.comdigest x probiotic