When Should I Take A Probiotic
Because supplements like probiotics aren’t regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, each probiotic supplement may come with different directions on dosing and timing. The most important advice is to choose a time you’ll actually stick to, especially if you have trouble remembering to take pills in the first place. “Consistency is the key with taking probiotics if one wants to reap the potential benefits,” Dr. Asike says.
While the time of day is ultimately up to you, this expert suggests that probiotics may be most effective if you plan to take them about 30 minutes before a mealand most effective if you take your supplement before breakfast. Probiotics will have a greater effect in your small intestine if you take them before you eat: “During a fast or prior to eating, the stomach won’t be as acidic and this will allow the probiotic capsule or tablet to be able to make its way into the intestine,” he explains.
Adding a probiotic into your routine first thing in the A.M., then, will likely keep your stomach from sabotaging your efforts. “Breakfast is usually eaten around the same time daily, and tends to be smaller and more easily digested,” Dr. Asike says.
The Benefits Of Probiotics
Probiotics are proven to improve digestive health, reduce intestinal inflammation, and bolster your immune system. If you want to stay healthy, taking care of your gut health to power up your natural defenses is paramount.
As new strains of probiotics and new probiotic formulations are introduced, product benefits are being extended beyond gut health. Benefits now include womens health, cardiovascular health, cognitive function, skin health, athletic performance, weight management, mood, and overall wellbeing. Let us repeat, applications and results are strain-specific. Clinical evidence must be linked to specific formulations defined by genus, species, strain, and the number of live bacteria present.
The probiotic benefits most frequently claimed by nutritional supplement manufacturers for probiotics include:
- Weight Management
- Womens Health
As promised, we will refer to clinical studies to determine which of these structure-function claims are substantiated by scientific evidence. Results from at least one well-designed clinical trial prove that oral administration of a specific probiotic strain is safe and effective.
The Problem With Digestive Enzymes
There isnt actually a lot of sufficient evidence or research that taking digestive enzymes can help to support gut health, at least not for those that dont have digestive issues. Therefore, they might not actually provide benefits for everyone.
In addition, not everyone should take digestive enzymes. Digestive enzymes can interact with diabetes medications and antacids. So, if youre taking either of these medications, you should consult a doctor before deciding to consume any digestive enzyme supplements.
There are also side effects associated with taking digestive enzymes, with the most common being constipation. Other side effects may include nausea, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and gas.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Taking Probiotics Daily
Taking probiotics daily will allow you to reap the most benefits from all the good bacteria entering the gut. Firstly, they help to support your immune system. Did you know that roughly 70% of your immune system is in your gut? Therefore, a balanced and healthy immune response is very much dependent on strong communities of helpful bacteria in the gut.
A premium-quality probiotic supplement can help to support the foundation of your health at its core. Probiotics can also encourage a balanced microbiome. The bodys delicate balance of bacteria can be under attack by unhealthy lifestyle choices and environmental factors some of which you cant help, like medications and aging. These factors can have significant impacts on your healthy microflora balance. This is why taking probiotic supplements everyday are essential, as they will help to make sure that the healthy bacteria levels in your body are replenished so that your body can maintain a healthy state.
Probiotics can also help in terms of your day-to-day mood. Did you know that having a gut feeling is much more than having a hunch? A healthy gut environment plays a significant role in terms of your emotional and mental balance. The good bacteria in your intestinal tract support hundreds of nervous system chemicals being produced, which will regulate your mood.
Whats The Best Time Of The Day To Consume Probiotics
To optimize the effectiveness of your probiotics, we suggest you take a probiotic shortly before you eat your first meal of the day. If you forget to take your probiotics on an empty stomach, take them when you remember . And if you completely forget , dont bother doubling up the next day. Instead, take one capsule, as usual.
Don’t Miss: Mrm Natural Whey Protein 2 Billion Probiotics
What Does The Research Say
Probiotic doses are listed as colony forming units , which means the number of live strains in each dose.
Different brands will have different suggested doses and uses, so its important to understand the information listed.
Recent research found that the type of microbe strain, health condition, product formula, dose, and the quality of the product are all important for effectiveness.
The condition or symptom youre trying to treat can affect how the probiotic works and when youll see results. If youre taking a probiotic for general gut or immune health, youll need to take it awhile to see results.
On the other hand, if youre taking a probiotic for relief from diarrhea, you may see faster results.
For example, has shown that, when used in combination with rehydration therapy, treatment with probiotics can reduce the duration and frequency of infectious diarrhea in as little as 2 days.
Another study demonstrated that people who consumed a high-dose probiotic drink containing Lactobacillus paracasei, Lactobacillus casei, and Lactobacillus fermentium for 12 weeks experienced significantly less upper respiratory infections and flu-like symptoms compared to a placebo group.
Plus, it was shown that the probiotic drink boosted the immune system of the participants by increasing levels of antibodies including sIgA in the gut after 12 weeks.
Depending on what youre taking probiotics for, you may see symptom improvements anywhere between a few days to a few months.
When Should Someone Not Take Probiotics
Probiotics are some of the safest natural supplements available, and have very few contraindications. There are a few groups of people who we recommend exercise a degree of caution when they are considering supplementation with live cultures, an example of which is people who are immunosuppressed , and people with dark blood in their stools. Under these circumstances, it would be wise to seek the advice of a GP before considering probiotic supplementation. In fact if ever in doubt, always speak to your doctor about any health supplements. For more information see our contraindications FAQ.
With regards to medications and natural remedies, there are no known contraindications. The only point to take in to account here is if a supplement has antibacterial or anti-fungal properties. If it does, like garlic for example, then it is recommended that you take the probiotic at least a couple of hours either side of the other supplement, so as not to damage the bacteria. But with regards to safety, probiotics can be taken alongside all natural remedies without any problem.
You May Like: Do Probiotics Make You Pee More
Should I Give Probiotics To My Kids
Probiotics can be beneficial for both adults and kids. If your child has an illness that requires an antibiotic medication for treatment, taking a probiotic can help shorten symptoms. Probiotics can also be used to help relieve constipation, acid reflux, diarrhea, gas and eczema in children.
Introducing probiotics into your childs diet through food is typically a safe way to give them probiotics. Foods like yogurt and cottage cheese are often part of a balanced diet and can add in good bacteria without much risk.
There are commercially available probiotic supplements specifically designed for infants and children. However, it is important to talk to your childs pediatrician before giving them any probiotic supplement or changing the childs diet to include probiotic-rich foods.
Do Probiotics Need To Be Refrigerated
In general, probiotic bacteria are naturally sensitive to heat and moisture, both of which can kill the specialized organisms and render them ineffective. This is why certain probiotic supplements require refrigeration and will include clear instructions from the manufacturer regarding storage and ideal temperature to maintain effectiveness. Luckily, since the best time to take a probiotic is on an empty stomach and your stomach is likely empty right after you wake up or before you go to bed, its also an easy time to access a refrigerator.
However, not all probiotics are in need of refrigeration. In fact, freeze-dried organismssuch as those found in our Parsley Health probioticare shelf-stable, giving them significantly longer shelf-lives than their live probiotic counterparts. Freeze-drying helps to stabilize the probiotics and allows for large amounts of bacteria to be concentrated into a smaller volumeincreasing the final products potency and amount of CFUs.
When purchasing a probiotic, be sure to read the label closely. If your probiotic requires refrigeration, ensure your retailer has kept it refrigerated or if ordering by mail, that its shipped quickly with appropriate packaging and limited exposure to heat and moisture. Freeze-dried probiotics are much more resistant to extreme temperature shiftssuch as the cold temperatures that can be experienced when being shipped in an airplaneso they can withstand air travel or shipment in hotter climates.
Read Also: Do Baby Probiotics Help With Gas
To Summarize: Probiotic Supplements
The science supporting probiotic supplementation efficacy is sufficient for us to endorse adding a probiotic to your regimen. As to our question, how often should you take a probiotic, well refer to the WGO once again:
The WGO notes that the optimal dose of probiotics depends on the strain and product. The organization, therefore, recommends that clinicians who advise their patients to use probiotics specify the probiotic strains, doses, and duration of use that studies in humans have shown to be beneficial.
Stated differently, the data is mixed, dosages vary by strain and by product, so no general dosing recommendation can be made. Standard dosages for adults range from five billion to ten billion CFU per day.
And finally, we recommend you take just one dose of probiotics per day.
How Often Should You Take Probiotics
Probiotics are live yeast and bacteria that are good for you, particularly in your digestive system. Your body is full of bacteria some of which are good, and some of which are bad. Its no surprise that probiotics fall into the good category. They help to keep your gut healthy, providing many benefits, which we will touch on below. A lot of people wonder whether they should take daily probiotic supplements or whether this is too much. You came to the right place were going to answer all of the questions you may have about when to take your probiotic supplement so that you can get a better understanding. So, lets get to it…
Recommended Reading: Karma Wellness Flavored Probiotic Water
Signs You Are Taking Too Many Probiotics: 3 Diarrhea
Diarrhea is characterized by loose, watery bowel movements that may happen more frequently. Diarrhea may also be accompanied with general abdominal pain, bloating, and nausea.
Acute diarrhea lasts only about a day or two and goes away on its own. It is usually caused by food or water that has been contaminated by a harmful bacteria, virus, or parasite. Diarrhea that lasts longer can point to a more serious underlying problem.
Probiotics such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and Saccharomyces boulardii have actually been found to reduce the duration of diarrhea. However, overdosing on probiotics can irritate your gut and result in loose stools.
Can You Use Digestive Enzymes And Probiotics At The Same Time
Yes. If you need to supplement with both digestive enzymes and probiotics at the same time, you can. Due to the fact that digestive enzymes and probiotics do different jobs to support overall health, you can take them together.
If you want to take the supplements at the same time every day, you should take them in the morning on an empty stomach before breakfast in the morning, since each supplement can be taken at this time.
Don’t Miss: What Type Of Probiotic Is Best For Bv
That Are The Very Best Probiotic Dietary Supplements Youll Be Able To Take Every Day
Whats most vital right here is that you justre selecting probiotic strains which might be clinically validated youll be able to select a probiotic with infinite CFUs, and if the strains are generic, theyre not confirmed to work. And thats what we name a giant waste of cash. We might additionally advise on the lookout for probiotics that comprise Lactobacillus, Saccharomyces boulardii, or Bifidobacterium, as these are three of probably the most researched probiotics.
Can I Take Or Eat Something To Increase The Good Probiotics In My Body
You can increase the amount of good microbes in your body through foods, drinks and supplements. You may already have certain foods in your daily diet that contain probiotics. Fermented foods in particular are home to a host of good bacteria that benefit your body. There are also fermented drinks like kombucha or kefir that introduce extra probiotics into your diet.
Apart from food, you can add probiotics to your diet through dietary supplements. These arent drugs, so they do not need to be approved by the Federal Drug Administration . Its important that you always talk to your healthcare provider before starting any kind of supplement or major change to your diet.
Don’t Miss: Is Probiotics Good For Weight Loss
How Much Should You Take Daily
The gut microbiome is unique to every person, so the amount of probiotics needed daily likely varies widely between individuals. Many factors influence the environment of your gut, such as your genes, health conditions, medications, including antibiotics, stress and diet. In addition, many different strains of probiotics are linked to different health benefits, and the amount of probiotics necessary to achieve a health benefit varies.
The dosage of probiotic supplements is listed in colony-forming units . Were still learning about the optimal amount of CFUs needed, but research shows that probiotics with between 1 million and 1 billion CFUs are adequate to produce health benefits. However, some probiotics have been shown to provide benefits at much lower amounts, and others need much higher doses.
The delivery mechanism is also important as it can offer probiotics protection against deterioration during manufacturing, storage and digestion. Techniques like freeze drying the good bacteria and rehydrating them in water prior to intake are used to help CFUs arrive as viable, live cultures to your large intestine, where they will be most impactful.
Can Probiotics Be Harmful
- Probiotics have an extensive history of apparently safe use, particularly in healthy people. However, few studies have looked at the safety of probiotics in detail, so thereâs a lack of solid information on the frequency and severity of side effects.
- The risk of harmful effects from probiotics is greater in people with severe illnesses or compromised immune systems. When probiotics are being considered for high-risk individuals, such as premature infants or seriously ill hospital patients, the potential risks of probiotics should be carefully weighed against their benefits.
- Possible harmful effects of probiotics include infections, production of harmful substances by the probiotic microorganisms, and transfer of antibiotic resistance genes from probiotic microorganisms to other microorganisms in the digestive tract.
- Some probiotic products have been reported to contain microorganisms other than those listed on the label. In some instances, these contaminants may pose serious health risks.
You May Like: Probiotics Are Which Of The Following
How Safe Are Probiotics
Because microbes used as probiotics already exist naturally in your body, probiotic foods and supplements are generally considered safe. They may trigger allergic reactions, and may also cause mild stomach upset, diarrhea, or flatulence and bloating for the first few days after starting to take them.
There are certain people who need to use caution when using probiotic supplements. There is a risk of infection in some people. These people include those who have:
- A weakened immune system .
- A critical illness.
Caution should also be used when giving probiotics to very sick infants.
Always talk to your healthcare provider before starting a probiotic supplement.
Should I Eat Before Taking A Probiotic
Taking a probiotic after or during your meal may negate some of the benefits of the supplement due to busy digestion efforts in your gut. But Dr. Asike explains that some bacterial strains are naturally more resistant to stomach acid, and can be taken with meals safely in some cases, multiple times a day. You’ll likely see printed language on your chosen probiotic packaging that indicates it’s safe to take with meals.
Read Also: Is There A Prescription Strength Probiotic
Should I Take My Probiotics With Other Medications
Even if you toss back vitamins or other medication in the morning , you should still take your probiotics at nighttime. With more time in your gut, the good bacteria can get to work healing your digestive issues. And that’s exactly what you want if you’re investing in a supplement.
The bottom line: The best time to take a probiotic is generally at nighttime before bed. But speak with your doctor before taking any sort of supplement to make sure it makes sense for you and your body/condition.
Signs You Are Taking Too Many Probiotics: 2 Gas
Gas and bloating often go hand in hand. The digestive process itself normally produces gas. The average person passes gas 13 to 21 times per day.
Gas in your GI tract comes from air that you swallow or by the break down of undigested foods by bacteria in your colon . Normally, as bacteria digest food in your gut, gas is released. Certain foods, particularly those high in fiber, cause more gas production than others.
Probiotic supplements essentially provide your gut with more of the good digestive bacteria. Overdosing on that bacteria can cause increased gas .
Recommended Reading: Swanson L Reuteri Probiotic Plus