3 Healthy Reasons to Take a Daily Probiotic Supplement

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Fermented foods are a great way to get your daily dose of probiotics, but here’s why you may also want to take a daily probiotic supplement…

Fermented foods containing natural probiotics are all the rage these days, as more and more evidence surfaces about the important role that beneficial bacteria play in our health. Kombucha, kefir, and kimchi are becoming common buzzwords – even outside of the natural health community.

It’s true that fermented foods are a wonderful way to colonize your body with healthy levels of  “good bugs,” but some people either don’t like them or just simply don’t get enough of them in their daily diet to make a real difference.

And even if you do eat plenty of fermented foods, you have no real way of knowing which beneficial probiotics they contain, or how active and viable they are. Depending on the type of food, what initial culture was used to make it, and how, when, and where it was made, it may contain varying levels of probiotic activity.

That’s why many natural health professionals recommend that besides enjoying fermented foods on a regular basis, you also add a regular high-quality probiotic supplement to your daily routine.

But how do you find a good probiotic supplement? Here are some tips from ThriveMarket.com – plus 3 good reasons to make sure you are getting healthy amounts of probiotics in your diet every day:

Look for high-quality formulations that list the strains designations (a letter and number code after the genus and species name, like B. Longum BB536) of the probiotic organisms, as well as the CFUs (colony forming units) found in each serving on the package.

A good supplement should contain at least two different types of bacteria in order to promote balanced gut flora. Most probiotic enthusiasts recommend choosing a blend that has at least four strains and a minimum of 5 billion CFUs per part.

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…Here are some of the surprising health issues that probiotics have been scientifically proven to help with—and the specific strains to look for in your supplement of choice.

1.) Strengthen the immune system

Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, and Bifidobaterium longum

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…Researchers in New Zealand examined the effects of certain probiotic strains on elite professional rugby players. They found that those who took supplements daily for four weeks had 40 percent fewer colds and gastrointestinal infections than those who took a placebo.

Save your sick days and take a supplement that has strains like Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, and Bifidobaterium longum, which all help strengthen the immune system…

2.) Improve digestion and nutrient absorption

Lactobacillus species like L. acidophilus, L. plantarum, Bifidobacterium strains

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Balanced gut flora (the ecosystem of healthy bacteria in the stomach and small intestine) is essential for optimal digestion. Illness, antibiotics, and a diet high in sugar and processed food all inhibit healthy bacterial growth in the gut. It’s important to replenish Lactobacillus strains in particular; L. acidophilus and L. plantarum thrive in the small intestine and help break down lactose (a milk sugar) and other carbohydrates as well as support overall digestion.

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3.) Reduce anxiety and depression

L. acidophilus, Bifidobacterium, and Lactococcus

The link between food and mood is undeniable. But researchers haven’t really taken a closer look at how they could be related until recently. Some mental health disorders like depression have been linked to low-grade brain inflammation, which has in turn been linked to imbalances in gut bacteria. Other issues like chronic fatigue, anxiety, and mood fluctuations can also be traced back to funky gut flora. Probiotic bacteria may play a direct role in improving cognition, behavior, and gut-to-brain communication.

…Strains like L. acidophilus, Bifidobacterium, and Lactococcus have been studied the most for their antidepressant qualities…

At the very least, taking a regular probiotic supports a healthy immune system and digestive regularity… Just make sure the supplement you’re using has clinically documented strains, actual strain identifications listed on the label, is specifically designed to suit your needs, and is a reputable brand (we recommend Jarrow Formulas).

Read More at ThriveMarket.com

 

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