What are Probiotics and how do they impact your Health?

According to National Institute of Health (NIH), human body contains trillions of microorganisms, ten times more than the human cells! However, they are much smaller than the human cells hence make up only 1 to 3 percent of the body mass.

Probiotics are the good bugs (bacteria & yeast) found in food (like yogurt) and supplements. Good bugs are thought to be important for your health. When there is imbalance, where bad bugs overgrow the good bugs, you may not feel well.


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However, we still need to wait for science and research to figure out how exactly probiotics work and whether they actually help. Studies so far suggest potential benefit from some probiotics in certain conditions. Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus may help those with Irritable bowel syndrome while Saccharomyces boulardii (yeast) and Lactobacillus may help Antibiotic associated diarrhea (as antibiotics kill some good bacteria along with the bad bacteria). VSL #3 and E Coli Nissle seems to benefit patients with Ulcerative Colitis. Besides gut health, further research is needed to see if probiotics may also help with oral health, allergies, immunity and other aspects of health.

There are numerous probiotic brands available in market but none of them are regulated. You don’t know what you get! If not properly formulated, microorganisms may not survive the acid in stomach and may be useless.

Resource: American College of Gastroenterology


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