I’m sure we have all heard of the term probiotic, but what are they?
Probiotics are bacteria and yeast that help fight many ailments. Normally we think of bacteria as a bad thing, but there’s such a thing as good bacteria, and these are found in probiotics. Our bodies naturally make them but they’re also found in some food and come as a form of supplements too.
One way I like to think of it is for example if you become ill and have to take antibiotics, your body (or supplements you take) will send the probiotics in to help you recover from your illness. Antibiotics kill the bad bacteria and probiotics promote the good bacteria.
Two Main Types Of Probiotics
This type of probiotic is often found in yogurt and often relieve diarrhea and also soothe those that can’t digest lactulose. “Lacto” is the part that fights the bad bacteria. Often anyone suffering from vaginal symptoms such as thrush will be recommended to try and get a higher intake of this probiotic, along with a prescribed cream, pessary or oral tablet.
This type supports your immune system, and helps the body break down lactose into nutrients that your body can use, so like lactobacillus, lactose intolerant people often take this to help aid their discomfort. It can also help relieve IBS (irritable bowl syndrome). Many people don’t even realize that they are suffering from IBS, they put it down to ‘wind’ or ‘eating too much’. Infact that’s exactly what IBS is. If you can’t easily digest what you’ve eaten, that will cause IBS.
Top 4 Probiotics Benefits
- Increased Energy – probiotics can help you generate more B12. If you’re ever feeling tired all of the time (TATT) it’s likely because you’re lacking B12 in your system.
- Better skin – People that suffer with skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis often notice that their skin improves thanks to probiotics when they’re eating foods with live cultures in.
- No More Bad Breath – Bad breath is an embarrassing thing to suffer with, and apart from chewing gum and always brushing, there’s not much you can do about it. Of course probiotics eliminates candida meaning better smelling breath.
- Weight Loss – Since probiotics aid your digestive system you can expect to see some weight loss too. If your body is digesting easier then your body isn’t going to be storing all of the fat!
Adding Probiotics To Your Diet
As previously mentioned, probiotics are found in food, so if you want to give them a try and see if they make any difference to the way you feel, then check the labels out on these products and give them a try. The most common is yogurt, we’ve all seen the Danone adverts for the probiotic yogurt. There’s no lie there, they contain active cultures which can help your digestive system and give you a healthier gut. Fermented Cheese such as Swiss cheese, Goats cheese, Parmesan and Gouda all contain live cultures. Fermented vegetable products like: miso, pickles and sauerkraut.
If you’d prefer to take the supplement route, then go for supplements that state that they have singular or multiple live cultures in them, and always make sure they’re in date. Multiple strings of probiotics will be more effective than just the one. I’d also recommend talking to your pharmacist about which is the best one for you to take. You can describe what you’d like to take them for and they will recommend the best one for your ailments. If you want to learn more about probiotics and its benefits we leave this health benefits guide for probiotics.
Possible Cons To Taking Probiotics?
Some consumers have complained of bloating and gas when they first introduce it into their diet, but other than that, no. Do be aware that companies do not have to prove that they work, so always go for a trusted brand and not a cheap one that you find on the internet, they’re probably not going to work.
So if you’re suffering from IBS symptoms, have bad skin, have digestive trouble, bad breath, no energy then I’d definitely recommend trying to introduce some sort of probiotic into your diet to see the difference it makes to you. Obviously probiotics don’t replace medication or anything like that so if your symptoms are serious, please see your Doctor.