Gut Health Starts With Prebiotics
You can buy prebiotic supplements, but you dont need themif you eat the foods that fortify the army of friendly bacteria in yourintestines, Dr. Cresci explains.
She recommends these microbiota-loving foods:
- Fiber-rich foods: Fruits, vegetables andwhole grains.
- Potatoes: Ideally, a boiled and cooled potato,since the starch is more resistant to digestion.
- Bananas: Green, less-ripe bananas arerich in resistant starch.
- Jerusalem artichokes: A root vegetablerich in the prebiotic inulin.
Should You Take Prebiotics In The Morning Or At Night
Prebiotics are best taken in the morning because they help you wake up and feel energized. Taking them at night can lead to restless sleep and may even disrupt your sleep cycle.
If you’re someone who likes to get up early and start their day with a bit of exercise, then taking prebiotics in the morning is probably the best option for you. However, if you’re someone who likes to sleep in and relax before starting their day, then taking prebiotics at night might be a better option.
You also need to think about what you’re trying to achieve by taking prebiotics. If you’re looking for general health benefits, then either time of day should be fine.
But if you’re trying to improve your gut health or boost your immune system, then taking prebiotics in the morning is probably a better idea. The reason for this is that prebiotics help stimulates the growth of good bacteria in your gut, and these bacteria are most active during the daytime.
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Can You Take Prebiotics And Probiotics Together
You can take prebiotics and probiotics together. Doing so is called microbiome therapy. Prebiotic fibers help feed and strengthen probiotic bacteria. Taking the two in combination can help make your probiotics more effective.
Probiotic supplements help replenish the good bacteria that naturally occur in a healthy intestine. Prebiotics are specific plant fibers that act as food sources for your gut bacteria.
Certain probiotic supplements have prebiotics mixed in. The idea is that these prebiotics act as a food source for the probiotic bacteria when they reach the large intestine. In this case, the prebiotics help the probiotics and can very well be taken together.
Prebiotics can also be taken in larger quantities as a separate probiotic supplement. Its best to take them at a slightly different time of day than your probiotics. This helps avoid over-fermentation, which can lead to gas, bloating, and digestive discomfort.
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How To Take Probiotics
Study after study has proven that probiotics work. Theyre widely known as friendly bacteria that help maintain a healthy digestive system, and theres even research to suggest that probiotics can improve your mental health. But do you know how to take probiotics correctly? Are you storing them properly? These sensitive bacteria need care and attention before they give you those health-boosting benefits. Find out if youre making any of these probiotics mistakes.
What Studies Support Giving Probiotics With Antibiotics
A Cochrane review of 23 studies investigated giving probiotics containing either one or a combination of the following: Bacillus spp., Bifidobacterium spp., Clostridium butyricum, Lactobacilli spp., Lactococcus spp., Leuconostoc cremoris, Saccharomyces spp., or Streptococcus sp.
Results from 22/23 trials that reported on the incidence of antibiotic-associated diarrhea show a significant benefit from probiotics compared to active, placebo, or no treatment control . None of the 16 trials that reported on side events documented any serious side events attributable to probiotics with the most common ones being rash, nausea, gas, flatulence, abdominal bloating, abdominal pain, vomiting, increased phlegm, chest pain, constipation, taste disturbance, and low appetite. The authors concluded that there was a protective effect of probiotics for preventing antibiotic-associated diarrhea. The relative risk was 0.46 and the NNT was 10.
The authors considered Lactobacillus rhamnosus or Saccharomyces boulardii at 5 to 40 billion colony forming units/day to be the most appropriate choice. They also commented that although no serious adverse events were observed among the otherwise healthy children in these trials, serious adverse events have been observed in severely debilitated or immuno-compromised children with underlying risk factors , and advised that probiotics should be avoided in pediatric populations at risk for adverse events until further research has been conducted.
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What Is The Gut Microbiome
Our digestive tract is home to trillions of bacteria as well as fungi and viruses these are known as the gut microbiome.
The makeup of this biome is largely genetically determined however, it is heavily influenced by several factors such as whether we are born naturally or by cesarean section, if we were breastfed, our use of antibiotics, and our exposure to chemicals, pesticides, and other toxins.
Scientists now know that this microbiome is critical to our overall well-being. Some call it our second brain. Small imbalances can cause significant changes to our mental health and in the appearance of our skin and has been linked to almost every known condition such as Alzheimers disease, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Type 2 diabetes.
An imbalance may also cause constipation, diarrhea, skin rashes, yeast infections, and a suppressed immune system. Your likelihood of putting on weight also comes down to your microbiome and the influence it has on your response to insulin and thyroid gland function.
Can I Use Probiotics To Help With Medical Conditions
There is currently a large amount of research happening around the idea of what probiotics can do for your body. Even though there are a lot of possibly positive outcomes, researchers are still working to find definitive answers about how probiotics can help with various conditions.
However, there are some medical conditions where probiotics may help. This can vary between people meaning that what works for one person may not work for another. These can also vary based on the certain probiotic that is taken.
Some of the conditions that might be helped by increasing the amount of probiotics in your body include:
- Upper respiratory infections .
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Drug Interactions Of Probiotics
Drugs are known to interfere with administered probiotics . Interactions between probiotics and warfarin are known . There is also some potential for interaction with warfarin for example, Bifolac is a probiotic that is used for normalisation of gut flora, prophylactic, or temporary gastrointestinal disorders. The drug contains two bacterial strains: Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Bifidobacterium longum. The risk of potential drug interactions with Bifolac has not been studied .
Since probiotics contain live microorganisms, concurrent administration of antibiotics could kill a large number of the organisms, reducing the efficacy of the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species. Patients should be instructed to separate the administration of antibiotics from these bacteria-derived probiotics by at least two hours . Similarly, S. boulardii might interact with antifungals, reducing the efficacy of this probiotic . According to the manufacturer, Florastor, which contains S. boulardii, should not be taken with any oral systemic antifungal products . Probiotics should also be used cautiously in patients taking immunosuppressants, such as cyclosporine, tacrolimus, azathioprine, and chemotherapeutic agents, since probiotics could cause an infection or pathogenic colonisation in immunocompromised patients .
What Are The Health Benefits Of Probiotics
There are a number of health benefits to probiotics too. They are used to balance the bacteria in your gut microbiome and maintain diversity.
These bacteria are vital for the absorption of nutrients, healthy bowel movements, and a healthy digestive system. These bacteria are closely linked to the alleviation of IBS related pain, diarrhea, and constipation symptoms.
A diverse and balanced microbiome will increase the strength of your immune system. Your gut is linked to all areas of your body, especially the brain.
When the gut microbiome is thriving it will be able to produce a lot of hormones and neurotransmitters.
It is estimated that around 90% of the bodys serotonin is produced in the gut. Fluctuations in serotonin can be responsible for mood swings, anxiety, and depression.
Youre Under A Lot Of Stress
Stress can have a negative influence on your gut health, causing digestive problems and inflammation. Probiotics may aid in the reduction of stress-related symptoms while also promoting good gut health.
If youre having any of these symptoms, its probably time to start taking probiotics. Determine which probiotic supplement is best for you by consulting with your doctor or a registered dietitian.
Are Probiotics The Key To A Well
Whether your diet is out of whack or you live with a chronicdisease, a probiotic supplement has the potential to help restore your gut tooptimum health. There are supplements commercially available that deliver bothLactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, as well as other probiotic species.
For most people, taking a probiotic is safe, says Dr.Cresci. I recommend people living with a chronic disease or who have asuppressed immune system discuss with their doctor about adding more probioticsto their diet to make sure that taking a probiotic is something they shouldconsider doing.
Since probiotic supplements can be hard on your wallet, Dr. Cresci recommends other ways to build your gut army, such as eating fermented foods like:
- Yogurt that contains added Lactobacillus andBifidobacterium strains.
- Kombucha, a fermented tea.
- Sauerkraut, fermented cabbage.
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Safety Of Administration Of Probiotics
Consumers are increasingly using probiotics for their various health benefits. In healthy individuals probiotics are safe to be used. Clinical evidence for their efficacy is strong in case of antibiotic-associated diarrhea management . However there are areas of uncertainty. Caution has to be exercised with certain patient groups like premature neonates or immune deficiency. Paucity of information regarding the mechanisms through which probiotics act, appropriate administrative regimes, and probiotic interactions necessitate further investigations in these areas. Properties of probiotics are strain specific. Hence confirmation studies need to be performed, and effects cannot be generalized. A detailed assessment by NIH on the safety aspects has been published . The conclusion which has emerged necessitates the need for systematic reporting of adverse events and better documentation of interventions.
Allergy And Atopic Diseases Of Children
Atopic diseases arise from aberrant immune responses to environmental allergens leading to allergic inflammation . The allergic responses are mediated by the Th2 cells which produce interleukins-4, -5, -9, and -13. Genetics play a strong role, and genes-encoding proteins which are involved in the pathogenesis of allergic inflammation have been identified . Atopic dermatitis a common allergic skin disease is widely prevalent in children from US and Western Europe . Children suffering from AD have higher number of S. aureus and Clostridium in their colon and lower number of Enterococcus, Bifidobacterium, and Bacteroides . With the increasing recognition of the importance of healthy intestinal microbiota, there has been a substantial effort to assess the potential role of probiotics in the prevention and/or treatment of allergic diseases in human clinical trials. When Lactobacillus GG was administered to high risk infants, there was a 50% reduction in observed atopic eczema . In another study in Finland when children were given a whey formula with L. rhamnosus or B. animalis ssp. lactis for 2 months, the skin condition improved . Similar curative results were obtained L. rhamnosus plus L. reuteri preparations .
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Why You Should Take Probiotics With Antibiotics
Antibiotics play a critical role in killing bad bacteria. But as they destroy infections, they can also cause collateral damage to the good bacteria in your gut, which could result in diarrhea for a couple of daysor even weeksafter you stop taking the medicine.
So how can you get the benefits of antibiotics without the nasty stomach side effects? The answer might be found in probioticspills or even powders with live microorganisms that offer health benefits.
Your intestines contain around 1,000 different species of bacteria, with 100 trillion bacteria in total, says Dr. Lawrence Hoberman, president and chief executive of Medical Care Innovations Inc. If 80% of that bacteria is the good, healthy kind, the harmful bacteria stay at bay. But antibiotics change the balance in the microbiome, which may result in an increase in the harmful bacteria, he explained.
The immune system recognizes the bad guys and will try to destroy them. But in the process, it breaks down the intestinal lining and causes inflammation, and thats how we get antibiotic-associated diarrhea, Dr. Hoberman explains.
One study found that antibiotic-associated diarrhea affects between 5% and 39% of patients, depending on which antibiotic they take. But research shows that probiotics can curb digestion problems. A meta-analysis of 34 other studies found that probiotics reduce instances of antibiotic-associated diarrhea by 52%.
Gut Microbiota And Obesity
The metabolic equilibrium of the host is maintained by the gut microbes . One study in adult population with type 2 diabetes has shown that their gut microbiota differs from that of non-diabetic adults, and that health may potentially improve when the gut microflora is modified by the administration of probiotics and prebiotics. In spite of these findings, and the relationship between diabetes and abdominal fat, few studies have been aimed at finding correlations between the composition of the microbiota and the occurrence of inflammation and metabolic alterations in individuals with obesity . A study in patients with diabetes mellitus showed that these individuals had a lower number of Faecalibacterium prausnitzii and an increase in with inflammatory markers . Obesity was found to be associated with large changes in the abundances of different bacteria from different taxa .
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How Dietary Fiber Affects Gut Microbiota
Gut microbiota performs several important tasks once the bacterial mix has been favorably resolved by consuming beneficial dietary fibers. Following ingestion, the body breaks down the dietary fiber found in certain complex carbohydrates in the large intestine via fermentation in fact, the large intestine contains more bacteria than any other place on or in the human body. Fermentation produces gasses and acids that help beneficial bacteria multiply while stifling the production of bad, disease-causing microorganisms. When these good bacteria multiply, they strengthen the walls of the lower gut. Because the lower gut produces a variety of hormones that help the body regulate optimum health conditions, it stands to reason that making adequate dietary fiber a part of your everyday diet is essential for better overall wellness.
The lower guts forgotten organ appears to regulate a wide range of potentially disease-causing bacteria. Recent research indicates that proper bacterial mix helps people fight obesity. A strong colon wall helps people absorb the minerals calcium and magnesium. Eating fermentable fiber reduces bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which fights hardened arteries and heart disease. There is now considerable evidence that a bad bacteria mix, called dysbiosis, is part of many, indeed most, chronic intestinal disorders. Prebiotics may well help reverse this bad mix of bacteria.
Do You Take Prebiotics & Probiotics At The Same Time
Probiotics are the healthy microflora that live in your digestive tract and prebiotics are the nutrients that they use to thrive. Symbiotic products combine probiotics and prebiotics to enhance their beneficial effects. Although both prebiotics and probiotics need to be a regular part of your diet in order to provide health benefits, they do not need to be taken at the same time. Consult a health care provider before taking probiotic or symbiotic supplements.
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Do Antacids Affect Probiotics
âProbiotics and antacids have different primary targets,â Dr. Chen says. While antacids work to slightly elevate the pH in the stomach, probiotics act primarily by renewing and enhancing good bacteria in the small intestine, the part of the digestive system that comes directly after the stomach.
According to Dr. Chen, probiotic supplements are often coated with a material that allows them to survive the stomachâs acidity as they travel along the digestive system. Some have a delayed-release formulation so that their contents are dispersed after they clear those stomach acids. She adds that the two over-the-counter products have limited interaction, so itâs fine to take them at the same time, as long as you take them in prescribed amounts.
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What Are The Best Probiotic Sources
Like prebiotics, probiotics are found in many food sources, the most obvious ones being fermented foods and dairy products such as yogurt.
A lot of these items contain live bacteria that help with lots of tummy problems and can keep you regular and pain-free month after month. Just what are foods with probiotics in them? They include the following:
- Dark chocolate
Some of these items may be unfamiliar to many Americans, but oddly enough, most of them are found in your average supermarket.
Once you taste how yummy they are, you wont have any problems adding them to your diet. Figuring out what are probiotic foods and which contain prebiotics isnt complicated.
As youll learn when you do your research, many contain both probiotics and prebiotics, making it even easier to add these products to your eating habits.
The important thing to keep in mind is that when it comes to good tummy health, there are good bacteria and bad bacteria, and adding good bacteria will always be beneficial.
When it comes to your digestive health, you deserve to have the very best, and adding probiotic bacteria to your diet is an easy way to feel your best every day.
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Space Two Hours Away From Medications
Since prebiotic fiber isnt digested, it can bind to medications. This may affect the absorption of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. For this reason, its recommended to take prebiotic supplements at least two hours before or two hours after any medications .
Consult your doctor or pharmacist before adding a prebiotic supplement to your regular medications to avoid any potential interactions.
If you take any medication, do not take our scFOS supplement at least 2 hours before or after.