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Is Probiotics Essential for Good Health

Probiotics are the latest topic of discussion in the health front.

These live microorganism and bacteria have potential health benefits. As a result, we see a plethora of probiotic supplements everywhere.

Probiotics are primarily good and gut-friendly bacteria. It especially aids digestion. Our body, after all, is a house of bacteria, both good and evil. That’s uncanny but true! Probiotics promote the growth of healthy bacteria and eliminate the bad ones.

In addition, they may also promote cardiovascular health and reduce symptoms of depression. There are some probiotics for women’s health that play an important role in maintaining their vaginal health.

While fermented foods have plenty of probiotics, you can try oral probiotics for convenience.

How do Probiotics Work?

While researchers are still trying to figure out how they work, they upkeep good health by:

  • Replacing the effects of antibiotics, which kills both bad and good bacteria
  • Balancing both healthy and unhealthy bacteria to maintain the body’s flora
  • Reducing bad bacteria in the gut that causes inflammation and infection

Probiotics are naturally present in the intestines. Some examples of intestinal probiotics are:

  • Saccharomyces boulardii –A typical yeast present in probiotics that helps fight digestive health issues and diarrhea
  • Lactobacillus bacteria – The most common type found in probiotic supplements. It is abundantly present in fermented foods and yogurt.
  • Bifidobacterium – Mostly found in dairy products, it is the best probiotic for IBS.

Probiotic supplements are easy to obtain. You can carry it anywhere.

What do Probiotics do?

Of all things, probiotics transfer food through the gut by triggering the nerves controlling gut movement. Oral probiotics are effective for some of the following conditions:

  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Stomach Infections – diarrhea caused by bacteria, parasites, and viruses
  • Medicine induced diarrhea – antibiotics
  • Eczema
  • Vaginal Health
  • Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
  • Oral Health
  • Cold and Allergies

Natural Sources of Probiotics

If you are not a big fan of probiotic supplements, you may try some foods containing plenty of probiotics:

  • Yogurt
  • Kefir
  • Sauerkraut
  • Tempeh
  • Kimchi
  • Miso
  • Kombucha
  • Pickles
  • Buttermilk
  • Natto
  • Fermented cheese

Probiotic foods are incredible. Any type of fermented food, such as soybeans, dairy, and vegetables, is rich sources of probiotics. However, as it is not possible to have these foods regularly, you can have oral probiotics.

How Safe are Oral Probiotic Supplements?

Generally, probiotics are safe and effective. However, some oral probiotics may trigger complications like allergic reactions, diarrhea, flatulence, bloating, and mild stomach problems. After a few days of use, these symptoms naturally subside.

Most probiotics are effective. However, people with lupus or similar immune disorders should avoid taking probiotic supplements.

Remember, not all oral probiotics are the same. Make sure you choose a supplement that is tested to be safe and effective.

Are Probiotics and Prebiotics the Same?

No, they aren’t.

Prebiotics are fibers present in food that passes through the gut without any changes. Good bacteria in the colon further use them as a source of food for growth.

Our body already contains good bacteria, but very few. Prebiotics can stimulate the growth of good bacteria, where probiotics are already present in the stomach.

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