THE AMAZING HEALTH BENEFITS OF A DAILY PROBIOTIC SUPPLEMENT
Probiotic foods are packed with live microbial cultures that have proven health benefits. Foods like kimchi, yogurt, sauerkraut and kefir, and certain dietary supplements, are all rich in microbial cultures, making them a great addition to a gut-friendly diet.
So how exactly do probiotics work? Let’s start by taking a closer look at our digestive system. Consisting of trillions of bacteria, our gut needs a healthy intestinal microbiota to thrive. The good news is: research shows that food containing live, active cultures can actually increase these beneficial bacteria, helping stimulate immune functions and boost gut health.
Now what about the benefits for your health? Here we look at the reasons a daily probiotic supplement may be a good addition to your daily routine.
1. Helps balance gut bacteria
Illness, antibiotics and poor diet can all lead to an imbalance of gut bacteria, causing unpleasant symptoms like allergies, obesity, digestive problems and even depression. But thankfully, taking a regular probiotic can help to bring balance to your gut. A review of 63 studies has found that probiotic supplements can help to restore the microbiota to a healthy state, especially if it’s compromised by illness.
2. Controls blood sugar level
Like blood pressure, blood sugar levels need to be kept in check – especially as we age or develop a less than healthy lifestyle. Blood sugar levels can be kept under control by eating plenty of healthy food with a lower GI and, according to recent studies, incorporating a probiotic supplement into your diet.
A recent Canadian study examined the effects of probiotics on patients with high blood pressure. The researchers found that the participants that were given probiotics experienced a decrease in several measures of blood sugar levels over three months. While more research needs to carried out, the results suggest that probiotics could play a part in managing blood sugar levels.
3. Improves immune function
Amazingly, 80% of your immune system is located in your gut. This means that it’s essential that the intestinal tract – the home of all these important immune cells – is kept healthy and one of the best ways of achieving this is through encouraging strong communities of beneficial bacteria. Probiotics play a role in defining and maintaining the delicate balance between necessary and excessive defense mechanisms, including innate and adaptive immune responses. This means that incorporating a regular probiotic supplement into your diet could improve your immune function, helping your body ward off illness and recover from illness faster.
4. Fights bad breath
It might not seem like your gut and your breath have much in common, but often the root cause of bad breath lies deeper than your dental hygiene. Bad smelling breath is a common symptom of dysbiosis – an imbalance between the good and bad bacteria in your gut, as well as yeast or candida.
Studies show that certain probiotics, including Streptococcus salivarius K12, can actually help freshen your breath by suppressing the growth of bad breath-causing microbes. Unlike mouthwash or mints that simply mask bad smell, a probiotic supplement can help fight the problem by supporting the long-term balance of oral and gut bacteria.
5. Reduce symptoms of digestive disorders
You might have been recommended a probiotic supplement when suffering from constipation or diarrhea. That’s because probiotics perform a dual role: they help to resolve imbalances in intestinal flora, supporting a return to regular bowel function, and they also help replenish gut flora after it’s been depleted by serious diarrhea.
According to a review of clinical studies by King’s College London, researchers found that on average, probiotics helped treat diarrhea and constipation by slowing “gut transit time”, increasing the number of weekly bowel movements, and helping soften stools.
What are great sources of probiotics?
Ancient foods like kefir, kimchi and kombucha have exploded into the health world thanks to their incredible probiotic benefits, but it’s not always easy to incorporate these superfoods into your everyday diet. That’s where probiotic supplements step in. A multi-strain probiotic like Multi-Flora from ncapsulate® is packed with billions of friendly bacteria that can help prevent and treat a wide range of digestive disorders. When shopping for probiotic supplements, just remember to look out for one that is bile and acid tolerant for the best results.