You’ve undoubtedly heard how important probiotics are, the live microorganisms that you can get through your diet or via probiotic supplements. TV is filled with adverts for digestive aids, but they’re not always the greatest at explaining all of the benefits you can get from supplementing with these, so read on for our comprehensive list of probiotic benefits.
1) Dealing With Diarrhea
Whether you’re suffering from something minor, a result of antibiotics you might be taking or an infection (often seen with children), probiotics can certainly help. When you suffer from diarrhea, the microbes in your gut can become completely imbalanced, which is where the probiotics step in to help. At the very least, it can cut back on how severe it is or how long it lasts for.
2) Boosting Immune Health
According to a study on the US National Library of Medicine, the upper respiratory tract infections can be significantly reduced in adults when supplementing with probiotics. When compared to a placebo, it was proven to work in this study, where it meant the patient didn’t need as many antibiotics and reduced the episodes of acute URTIs.
3) Increased Iron Levels
Something hugely important to a significant portion of our customers, especially those entering a vegan diet, L.plantarum was shown to increase iron absorption in tests quite substantially. It was also shown to lower your chance of being anemic in other tests.
4) Restoring Balance In Your Digestive System
As you probably know, you have good and bacteria living in your gut. Probiotics contain these much needed good bacteria. This is important as if you’ve been ill, taking medication, stress, have a poor diet, lack of sleep or plenty other issues, you might have too much bad bacteria, causing all kinds of issues. But these issues go beyond just digestion, it could also affect mental health, obesity and allergies.
5) Improving Mental Health Conditions
I previously touched on this, but probiotics can actually help people’s mental wellbeing in some cases. The connection between your gut health and your mental state has been highlighted in a vast number of studies, while tests showed not just in animals, but also in human testing, that probiotics worked to improve results. The mental health conditions included depression, anxiety, OCD, memory and autism.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) affects approximately 17% of people in the UK, quite an alarming figure when you think about it. In the paper just linked to, it highlights that probiotics should be taken by IBS sufferers, for at least 4 weeks to monitor the effect. The symptoms of bloating, gas and stomach pains should normally ease quite a bit in this time.
7) Lactose Intolerance
This should come as no surprise, considering the proven effects they have on irritable bowel syndrome, but probiotics are so powerful that people suffering from lactose intolerance can often still eat yogurt when supplementing with probiotics. This is due to the fact that the lactose is broken down by the L. bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus.
8) Potentially Improve Brain Health
The microbiota gut brain axis is something we were featured talking about in the media last week, which is the connection between the brain and the gut. Well unsurprisingly, these supplements can improve both spatial and non-spatial memory. Most of the tests showing positive results in cognitive function were performed on mice, however the results were conclusive and substantial.
9) Keeping Your Heart Healthy
As if we haven’t said enough, it can also help with your heart, due to the fact they can lower LDL, which is the bad cholesterol linked to strokes and heart disease. It has also been shown to help lower blood pressure. The probiotics work at breaking down the bile so it isn’t reabsorbed into the gut, where it is mostly made of cholesterol.
The studies have largely been performed on infants (when not performed on animals), which has been successfully shown to reduce how bad eczema patients were suffering. But one thing that is really interesting is that when it was taken by pregnant women, it significantly reduced the chances of the babies suffering from eczema at any point within the first two years of their lives.
It should be quickly mentioned that they don’t stay in your gut for long, they help with any issues taking place and then passes through the gut. For this reason, supplementation is recommended on a daily basis.