Probiotics are live microorganisms that help balance the bacteria in your gut. They’re essential for supporting your immune system and aiding with nutrient absorption.
Different strains of bacteria offer distinct advantages, so it’s essential to pick a probiotic that is suitable for you. If you experience certain symptoms, make sure the one you take has been scientifically proven to help treat those issues.
Reduces Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Probiotics are an integral part of maintaining gut health and relieving Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). They help restore a balanced balance of bacteria in the digestive tract, improve digestion, boost immunity levels, and facilitate regular bowel movements.
Probiotic supplements can help alleviate symptoms associated with IBS, such as abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence and cramping. These effects may result in an improved quality of life and reduced stress levels.
Additionally, a low-FODMAP diet can be beneficial for individuals with IBS. This involves abstaining from foods that contain fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols.
These carbohydrates can be found in certain food groups and they may be difficult for the body to digest, leading to abdominal pain or bloating.
Although there is no one-size-fits-all cure for IBS, diet, medication and stress management can significantly reduce symptoms. Unfortunately, this condition is chronic in nature and may recur at various points in one’s life.
Boosts Mood and Cognitive Function
Scientists refer to the connection between your gut and brain as “the gut-brain axis.” This axis connects the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems through neurotransmitters, hormones, peptides, and cytokines.
Studies have demonstrated that probiotics can benefit mood and cognitive function. For instance, a 2015 study published in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity discovered that people who took a probiotic blend for four weeks experienced less cognitive reactivity to their mood than those who didn’t take it.
Experts are currently studying different strains of bacteria to see which ones may help with mental health symptoms. It’s important to remember that certain probiotics may not work for everyone; thus, consult your doctor before altering your current treatment plan. They can advise you on which probiotic is most suitable and at what dosage level for maximum effectiveness.
Increases Absorption of Nutrients
The body relies on a healthy balance of beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract to ensure good health. Unfortunately, these microbes can become disrupted due to various factors like age, diet, travel, illness or medication use.
Probiotics help to restore the balance of bacteria in your digestive system, and they can be consumed as dietary supplements or fermented foods like yogurt, pickles and kombucha.
Furthermore, probiotics can increase your body’s capacity to absorb essential nutrients from food sources. This means it increases absorption of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes from what you eat.
In the first study to investigate this effect, L. reuteri supplementation increased serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels by 25.5% after nine weeks of intervention.
Prevents Bacterial Infections
Your gut is home to an array of beneficial bacteria that is essential for maintaining good health. These microorganisms aid digestion by breaking down food into vitamins and creating essential enzymes.
Furthermore, these bacteria help guard against bacterial infections such as antibiotic-related diarrhea and Clostridium difficile. Furthermore, they have been known to benefit those suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other digestive ailments.
Maintaining the health of your gastrointestinal tract (GI tract) can also aid in weight management. Probiotics alter the balance of metabolites in your gut, decreasing fat absorption and increasing energy expenditure.
They may also promote the production of certain B vitamins, such as vitamin B1 which aids in converting carbohydrates into energy.
Antibiotics can also reset your system after taking them, as antibiotics often destroy beneficial bacteria in your gut and allow harmful bacteria to take their place.