Prebiotics are fibers that are non-digestible by the human body but are highly digestible to probiotics. Basically, prebiotics are food for probiotics and help promote ‘good’ bacteria. The growth of good bacteria will help improve the health of the digestive tract, provide immune support and aid vaginal health.
For optimal results, Prebiotics and Probioticsmust be consumed together since they work synergistic-ally in the body.
Do I still need a Prebiotic if I take a Probiotic daily?
Yes. A product or food that contains prebiotics and probiotics is called a synbiotic. Synbiotics help support your microbiome, which is another name for the trillions of bacteria living in your body that help keep you healthy. Taking both will help ensure your microbiome stays in peak functioning order and that you stay healthy.
What does ‘good’ bacteria do?
“Good” bacteria are a group of microorganisms that live in our digestive tract. They are commonly called probiotics. Probiotics support gut health by aiding in the breakdown of food and helping to reduce uncomfortable gas and bloating. Probiotics also help support immune health by fending off ‘bad’ bacteria that can upset our stomach. By adding probiotics or more ‘good’ bacteria to your diet, you are helping to support your overall health.
What are Probiotics?
The term probiotics is derived from a Greek word meaning “for life” – an accurate phrase for what they do for us. Probiotics are microscopic bacteria living within the digestive tract needed to help maintain a well-functioning digestive system. The human bacterial microbiome or microflora consists of over 100 trillion bacterial cells, that’s 10 times the number of all the cells in our body! Typical food sources of probiotics include fermented dairy products such as yogurt, kefir products and aged cheeses as well as sauerkraut, kimchi, miso and tempeh.
What does my gut have to do with my immune system?
The gut is arguable the center of your health. Mostly comprised of probiotics, the gut is the first line of defense for your immune system. Between 70-80% of our immune tissue is located in the walls of your gastrointestinal tract. Helpful bacteria or probiotics help prevent the growth of harmful bacteria, aid digestion and support nutrient absorption to keep your gut (and you!) healthy. Diets high in processed foods, stress and poor lifestyle habits can upset the balance of your gut’s good bacteria and can lead to a weakened immune system.
Will taking a Probiotic help with constipation or diarrhea?
Probiotics will actually help with both. Constipation and diarrhea are common symptoms of distress in the gastrointestinal tract, signaling an imbalanced of bacteria. The purpose of good or ‘friendly’ bacteria is to restore balance to your digestive system and replenish the gut, regardless of the symptom – constipation or diarrhea.
I just finished a round of antibiotics. Should I take a Probiotics?
Absolutely. Antibiotics frequently throw the good and bad bacteria in your gut out of whack. This can lead to diarrhea or other stomach discomfort. Studies suggest that taking a probiotic during the course of an antibiotic treatment can lower the risk of developing antibiotic associated diarrhea (AAD).