Probiotics — beneficial bacteria — popularity has been on the rise in recent years. Despite this, they have been around in some form or another for quite some time. Researchers found that people used bacteria and yeast in fermentation during those times. And they associated them with several health benefits.
In 1994, the FDA implemented the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act, which regulated dietary supplements differently from prescription medications. As a result, supplement standards-including those for probiotics-were less rigorous. Consequently, consumers could buy probiotics over the counter, making them more accessible.
In this article, you’ll discover why this is so. It’ll further explain the role of probiotics in your body. So let’s get started.
How Do Probiotics Work For Your Body?
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The effects of probiotics on your body and how they enhance your health might surprise you. There are several specific mechanisms through which probiotics can improve health, including:
- Activating your microbiome — a group of organisms in an environment that interact with other microorganisms
- Encouraging beneficial bacteria to grow in your microbiome
- Protecting your microbiome from harmful bacteria
- Activating your body’s internal organs directly, including the intestines
- Relieving inflammation or leaky gut by producing compounds
- Modulating the immune system
Several probiotics influence microbiomes. They can alter the activity and growth of bacteria in the microbiome so that they produce and do different things. These changes can still occur even if the organism does not colonize for a long time.
As the human microbiome changes because of probiotics, organ function may be affected. Reduced numbers of these harmful bacteria reduce inflammation and disrupt barrier integrity. Probiotics work because they depend on the resident microbiome at the administered site.
The immune system, endocrine system, and epithelial cells can also directly recognize probiotics and their secreted metabolites. As soon as recognition occurs, downstream events are activated, such as reducing inflammation, some activation, and repairing the leaky gut.
The immune system is fragile, precious, and essential. Getting the best immune system probiotics would be best to experience the desired effect on your body. Choosing the right type and strain will help support your immune system.
The Role Of Probiotics For Your Body
Your body benefits from probiotics in the following ways:
- Improve Digestive Health
The first significant role of probiotics is promoting good digestive health. In a review published in 2019, probiotic consumption improved healthy adults’ immune, gastrointestinal, and reproductive health.
Here are some roles it might play in your digestive health, according to a meta-analysis:
- It generally has a positive effect on treating and preventing gastrointestinal diseases. When choosing probiotics for treating or preventing gastrointestinal disorders, it is essential to consider the type of disease and the probiotic strain.
- Probiotic supplements and foods rich in good bacteria may reduce the risk of inflammatory bowel diseases, such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. There is, however, more substantial evidence that ulcerative colitis improves, while Crohn’s disease may not benefit as much. There is also ongoing research on probiotics and gluten problems, including celiac disease.
- Studies have also shown that probiotics may positively affect diarrhea symptoms, such as antibiotic-associated diarrhea, acute diarrhea, traveler’s diarrhea, infectious diarrhea, and other types of diarrhea. Additionally, they relieve constipation.
- Meta-analyses have also found that probiotics might reduce irritable bowel syndrome symptoms, help eradicate H. Pylori and treat pouchitis, an intestinal condition caused by surgically removing the large intestine and rectum.
- Promotes Gut Health
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Gut health might be the best-known benefit of probiotics. As your gut ecosystem’s little helpers, probiotics restore order and create harmony. As a result, they outnumber and antagonize unwanted bugs. These bugs include unwelcome bacteria, yeasts, and parasites.
Research suggests probiotics can help with gut issues, like irregularity caused by gut imbalances. Antibiotics are often responsible for gut microbial imbalances. A targeted probiotic regimen elevates the gut microbiome. Their ability to reduce gas and bloating is demonstrated in scientific studies to benefit numerous upper and lower GI tract functions.
- Oral Health Improvements
Probiotics may positively affect the digestive tract from beginning to end. It may benefit your mouth by reducing harmful bacteria or plaque, also known as harmful bacteria. Three groups of children ages 13 to 15 participated in a randomized controlled trial: One group received a mouth disinfectant, another group received a probiotic mouth rinse, not swallowed, and the third group received a placebo.
Among the bacteria in the mouth rinse were Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Bifidobacterium longum, and Saccharomyces boulardii. Within two months, there was a significant reduction in plaque volume and gingivitis risk in the probiotic group.
Probiotics may also prevent cavities as plaque builds up on the tooth’s surface. Lowering mouth pH may protect the teeth from harmful bacteria by creating a sterile environment. Additionally, avoiding sugar and maintaining good oral hygiene may help prevent cavities if the place is acidic.
- May Ease Eczema Symptoms
You may relieve your eczema when you rub yogurt — one of the familiar probiotic food sources on your hands. Researchers have found that topical probiotics may help treat various skin conditions, including eczema. But research is still ongoing to discover how and why this could happen.
Researchers have also found that taking probiotic supplements during pregnancy may protect babies against eczema. However, the research is still limited. More research is still needed to investigate the link between probiotics and skin disorders.
- May Boost Your Mood
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You may boost your mood by taking probiotic supplements. Despite being too early, some studies have linked it to mood improvements. According to a small 2015 study of 20 people, those who ate probiotic-rich foods and took their supplements for four weeks experienced less sadness than those who received a placebo.
Researchers have also found several strains of probiotics that may reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders, according to further research from 2016. However, there’s a need for more studies to confirm this link.
- May Lower High Cholesterol Levels
Probiotic foods containing Lactobacillus bacteria may lower cholesterol levels, particularly low-density lipoprotein — the “bad” cholesterol. Researchers have also examined probiotics in a meta-analysis conducted in 2018 to determine whether they could lower total cholesterol levels.
A study of nearly 2,000 people found that probiotic supplements reduced total cholesterol levels significantly. However, supplement effectiveness may vary based on the type and dosage. It will take more studies to confirm these findings and determine which probiotics are effective.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that help your body to be healthy in several ways. You can get several supplements and foods that contain them. However, finding the best immune system probiotics is crucial to your health.