Probiotics And Insulin Resistance
A 2017 study published in the Medical journal of the Islamic Republic of Iran looked at the effects of probiotic supplementation over eight weeks on groups of rats with or without Alzheimer’s disease .7
The study found that regular consumption of four probiotic species of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium was effective in controlling glycemic status. Insulin resistance markers including serum insulin levels decreased in the rats given probiotics, but not in the control group.8
These findings suggest probiotics can play a role in improving insulin resistance, though larger studies involving human subjects are called for.
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When Should I Not Take Probiotics
Probiotics can be taken in almost any circumstances and by all ages. More information can be found in our frequently asked questions and by reading the article: Are probiotics safe to take?
However, there are a very small number of circumstances when we recommend that they are NOT taken without a discussion with your doctor first as they may be contraindicated with either a medical condition or another drug.
In this article we look at:
When Should You Not Take Probiotics
Although probiotics are generally safe to use, findings of a review from 2017 suggest that children and adults with severe illnesses or compromised immune systems should avoid using probiotics. Some people with these conditions have experienced bacterial or fungal infections as a result of probiotic use.
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Gut Imbalances Can Impact Vitamin Absorption
Do you struggle with dry or thinning hair, dry skin, fatigue, cravings, nutrient deficiencies, bloating, and/or weight gain even though youre eating a healthy diet? A digestive system imbalance may be to blame.
Since you primarily absorb micronutrients and macronutrients through your small intestine, disruptions affecting this organ or its good bacteria can affect your ability to adequately absorb nutrients from your food or from dietary supplements.
Digestive system imbalances that might bring these sort of imbalances include:
- High or low stomach acid
- Microbial dysbiosis
- Gut infections
To better understand how these imbalances affect the absorption of vitamins , lets review some important steps in the digestive process.
What Is The Rationale Behind Taking Probiotics With Antibiotics
Taking an antibiotic for an infection can kill beneficial bacteria that live in your gut.
Probiotics may be taken orally to restore any imbalance in the normal intestinal or urogenital flora. This is the rationale behind taking probiotics with antibiotics. Severe antibiotic-induced diarrhea can also lead to an infection with Clostridium difficile, also known as C. difficile, a bacteria which can cause dangerous inflammation in your colon .
Experts have hypothesized that If you suffer from stomach cramping, gas or diarrhea when you take antibiotics, adding a probiotic may help to lessen, or even prevent, these symptoms. The addition of a probiotic will also reintroduce helpful bacteria into your digestive tract that have been killed or had their numbers reduced by the antibiotic.
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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.
Is It Better To Take A Multivitamin Or Probiotics
Do you need both probiotics and multivitamins? The simple answer is maybe. Many people’s health will benefit from the addition of both probiotic supplements and daily multivitamins. However, many probiotic supplements do contain vitamins and minerals that are also present in multivitamins.
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Probiotics And Vaginal Health
Probiotics may also be of use in maintaining urogenital health. Like the intestinal tract, the vagina is a finely balanced ecosystem. The dominant Lactobacilli strains normally make it too acidic for harmful microorganisms to survive. But the system can be thrown out of balance by a number of factors, including antibiotics, spermicides, and birth control pills. Probiotic treatment that restores the balance of microflora may be helpful for such common female urogenital problems as bacterial vaginosis, yeast infection, and urinary tract infection.
Many women eat yogurt or insert it into the vagina to treat recurring yeast infections, a “folk” remedy for which medical science offers limited support. Oral and vaginal administration of Lactobacilli may help in the treatment of bacterial vaginosis, although there isn’t enough evidence yet to recommend it over conventional approaches. Probiotic treatment of urinary tract infections is under study.
Probiotics are generally considered safe they’re already present in a normal digestive system although there’s a theoretical risk for people with impaired immune function. Be sure the ingredients are clearly marked on the label and familiar to you or your health provider. There’s no way to judge the safety of unidentified mixtures.
What Are The Benefits Of Taking Probiotics
Probiotic supplements have been shown to benefit health in a number of ways.
Yet, some of the purported benefits of probiotics arent supported by research, so its important to always consult a healthcare professional before taking a probiotic supplement, especially if youre hoping to improve symptoms related to a health condition.
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How Probiotics Can Affect Glucose Metabolism
A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials published in 2016 looked at the effects of probiotics on glucose metabolism for individuals with type 2 diabetes. It found that taking probiotics reduced fasting glucose levels, and that this occurred in trials using multiple species of probiotics.
The researchers concluded that probiotic consumption may modestly improve glucose metabolism, and that taking multiple species for eight weeks or longer may enhance the effect.4
How Are Probiotics Regulated In The United States
Government regulation of probiotics in the United States is complex. Depending on a probiotic productâs intended use, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration might regulate it as a dietary supplement, a food ingredient, or a drug.
Many probiotics are sold as dietary supplements, which donât require FDA approval before they are marketed. Dietary supplement labels may make claims about how the product affects the structure or function of the body without FDA approval, but they arenât allowed to make health claims, such as saying the supplement lowers your risk of getting a disease, without the FDAâs consent.
If a probiotic is going to be marketed as a drug for treatment of a disease or disorder, it has to meet stricter requirements. It must be proven safe and effective for its intended use through clinical trials and be approved by the FDA before it can be sold.
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Can We Overdose Or Become Dependent On Probiotics If We Use Them In The Long Term
One concern people often have is whether their digestive system will become lazy if they take probiotics every day. But, rest assured, probiotics are not thought to be like laxatives which can cause the gut to become ‘lazy’ and reliant on them in order to function. There is no current research to suggest the body becomes dependent on probiotics.
Healthcare practitioners can read more on the subject of long-term use of probiotics, and whether that can lead to dependency, in the following FAQ: Is there a risk of dependency when taking probiotics?
In regards to overdosing, even when taken on a daily basis and at high doses it is extremely difficult to overdose on probiotics. For more on this subject you may like to read our FAQ Is it possible to overdose on probiotics? and Can I take two probiotic supplements at the same time?
Youre Having A Cuppa With Your Supplement
Throwing hot water on your probiotics is a no-no according to Rob:
Dont take a probiotic supplement with hot food and drinks such as tea or coffee as this can lessen the chance of the bacteria getting to your gut unharmed. Give it 30 minutes after taking them before you reach for the teapot.
Which brings us to the next beverage/probiotic partnership to avoid
Combined Vitamin D And Lactobacillus Probiotics
Manufactures are creating vitamin pills with ever increasing doses on vitamin D but research is showing us that its not the amount in the gut but how much is absorbed which matters. If you have the the wrong type of bacteria, or an inflamed gut wall, your absorption of vitamin will be very low. Low vitamin D levels, along side a leaky gut, both leading to chronic inflammation, is a perfect storm for ill health.
Several clinical trials have reported that oral Lactobacillus probiotic strains resulted in significantly increased serum vitamin D3 levels. Researchers have shown that the likely mechanism for this is increased lactic acid production from the probiotic bacteria, which in turn increases the enzyme responsible for vitamin D absorption and synthesis.
As well as the benefits mentioned above, vitamin D and probiotics have been shown to increase the effectiveness of anti-viral vaccines this is why Yourgutplus+ has been selected for the UK covid vaccine enhancement study.
Yourgutplus+ was selected for the UK National Nutritional Covid intervention study, the first paper was published in Nov 2021 and found a link between this lactobacillus blend with enhanced recovery from early and long covid .
How Does Probiotics And Multivitamins Benefit The Body
Probiotics work in the body by replacing the bad with good bacteria in digestive system, that can be lost for example after antibiotics therapy. They also keep the balance of good and bad bacteria in intestinum.
Vitamin B1 Thiamine has a central role in the production of energy from carbohydrates. It is also involved in RNA and DNA production and neurons function. Coenzyme called thiamine pyrophosphate is thiamins active form which takes a significant part in metabolism.
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin is important in the production of energy in electron transport chain, in the citric acid cycle and the catabolism of fatty acids.
Vitamin B3 Niacin is composed of 2 structures: nicotinamide and nicotinic acid. Niacin has two co-enzyme forms: NAD nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide and NADP nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate. Both has important role in energy transfer in the metabolism of glucose, fats and alcohol.
Vitamin B5 Pantothenic acid has important role in fatty acids and carbohydrates oxidation processes. Coenzyme A is formed from pantothenic acid, and it is involved in the synthesis reactions of many compounds in the body.
Vitamin B6 composed of 3 structures: pyridoxine, pyridoxal, pyridoxamine. The active form pyridoxal 5-phosphate is a cofactor in many enzyme reactions such as amino acid metabolism that includes neurotransmitters biosynthesis.
Vitamin B7- Biotin is important in the metabolism of lipids, proteins and carbohydrates.
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Do You Need To Take Vitamins
While a nutrient-dense diet will likely offer healthy people with the micronutrients they need, people struggling with immune function, gut health, and malabsorption issues can benefit from vitamin and mineral supplements. However, until the underlying cause of the malabsorption is identified and addressed, supplementing with vitamins and minerals will likely not provide much benefit.
Additionally, a 2020 literature review found many micronutrients to be more bioavailable in their whole-food form as opposed to a concentrated supplement, possibly related to additive, antagonistic, and synergistic process at the level of uptake and absorption . This is why at the clinic, we often advocate a food-first approach such as found in a Paleo-like diet.
The research on dietary supplements is mixed, and there arent many randomized controlled trials assessing the benefits of multivitamins and overall health. That being said, there are several groups that may benefit from taking multivitamin and mineral supplements [24, 25
- Infants who dont get enough iron
- Menstruating women who could lose iron
Vitamin supplements come in many forms, from gummies to capsules to chewables. If you choose to take dietary supplements, speak with your provider and look for high quality products with a third-party certification such as the Good Manufacturing Practices seal. This is a set of standards aimed at safety and quality created by the Food and Drug Administration .
Is It Ok To Take Probiotics Every Day
A common question about probiotics is whether it is ok to take probiotic supplements every day. Whilst there may be a few exceptions to this rule, the general answer is yes, it’s safe, and usually recommended, to take them daily.
It’s important to understand that probiotics are a natural supplement and not a medicine. They are best used at breakfast time as part of a daily health regime, rather than as a ‘quick fix’ option. There are also some situations where certain strains can be taken for a short time, such as alongside antibiotics. Fermented foods containing live cultures have been part of traditional diets in many different ethnic groups for centuries. Learn more by reading about our 5 favourite fermented foods. People have been consuming probiotics for generations in foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir and kombucha , but it has only been more recently that we have been able to consume specific strains for specific purposes, in easy-to-take capsules, powders, or kids’ gummies.
For Healthier Breast Milk
Remember, pregnancy doesnt end at birth but continues in a post-pregnancy phase. So, you need a healthier milk supply as you feed your baby .
Taking probiotics together with prenatal vitamins helps you prepare to breastfeed. That ensures that you have healthier milk to help build their young body defenses.
Taking probiotics before and during your pregnancy balances your gut microorganisms. That helps make healthier milk for your baby .
Creates Balance In Your Gut
The gut contains many microorganisms that can increase in numbers during pregnancy. So, taking probiotics helps you keep them in check. It improves your digestion and balances serotonin production.
That helps you stay out of depression and maintain a better mood during pregnancy.
Besides, balanced microbe levels in your gut help prevent increased glucose and body fat. Although thats necessary to increase the food supply to your fetus, too much of it can put you at risk.
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Issues To Be Aware Of
If you’re considering trying probiotics, there are a few issues you need to be aware of.
Probiotics are generally classed as food rather than medicine, which means they don’t go through the rigorous testing medicines do.
Because of the way probiotics are regulated, we can’t always be sure that:
- the product actually contains the bacteria stated on the food label
- the product contains enough bacteria to have an effect
- the bacteria are able to survive long enough to reach your gut
There are many different types of probiotics that may have different effects on the body, and little is known about which types are best.
You may find a particular type of probiotic helps with one problem. But this doesn’t mean it’ll help other problems, or that other types of probiotic will work just as well.
And there’s likely to be a huge difference between the pharmaceutical-grade probiotics that show promise in clinical trials and the yoghurts and supplements sold in shops.
Page last reviewed: 27 November 2018 Next review due: 27 November 2021
Can You Take Probiotics And Prenatal Vitamins Together
Most women worry about what they take before and during pregnancy. And one common question they ask is, can you take probiotics and prenatal vitamins together? That shows concern in boosting fertility, conception, and safe gestation.
You can take probiotics and prenatal vitamins together, and theres no harm in doing so. If pregnant, you dont have to worry about if they affect gestation since they dont affect your fetus.
Besides, it would help if you had a good supply of vitamins and minerals for a much healthier newborn.
This article explains if taking the two together is a good idea or not.
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What You Can Do
Don’t start taking probiotics without talking to your doctor or pharmacist about whether probiotics might help you. People who have immune deficiency or are being treated for cancer should not use probiotics without a doctor’s okay.
The most common species of bacteria used in probiotics are species of Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium. The bacteria are usually freeze-dried when you take the supplement, they warm up in your digestive system and become fully active. You can find probiotic supplements in most drugstores and supermarkets. They come as capsules or tablets to swallow and as loose powder to sprinkle on food. You’ll want a product that explicitly states a “sell-by” date. Dosages vary by product, so no general dosing recommendation can be made. However, common dosages for adults range from five billion to 10 billion colony-forming units per day. Take just one dose of probiotics per day.
Some people may experience loose stools in the first few days of taking probiotics, but this goes away. Taking probiotics at the end of a meal may help to reduce the symptoms.
Is It Ok To Take A Probiotic At The Same Time As Your Vitamins
Did you know that your gut is home to more than 1,000 bacterial species? It’s true. These microorganisms are also known as microbiota, and they make up your gut microbiome, which affects not only digestion and gut health but overall health. Probiotics, found in fermented foods as well as supplements, help support your gut to optimize health.*
But can you take a probiotic supplement at the same time as your other vitamins and supplements? What about if you’re on antibiotics? The short answer: Yes. But let’s dive in a little further.
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