Possible Side Effects Of Probiotics
Probiotics are living bacteria and yeasts that provide health benefits when consumed in large amounts.
They can be taken as supplements or consumed naturally through fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha .
The health benefits of probiotic supplements and foods have been well documented, including a lower risk of infections, improved digestion and even a reduced risk for some chronic diseases .
While there are many health benefits linked to taking probiotics, there can also be side effects. Most of these are minor and only affect a small percentage of the population.
However, some people with serious illnesses or compromised immune systems may experience more severe complications.
This article reviews the most common side effects of probiotics and how to reduce them.
Signs Probiotics Are Working
Your gut microbiome contains several bacteria, including probiotics, that live in your gastrointestinal tract. Probiotics, also known as good bacteria, play a big role in creating a healthy gut barrier and improving digestion. With bacterial imbalances in your gut, you would start experiencing fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, or other stomach-related issues.
Stomach troubles are one of the most common issues in the human body, and everyone experiences them. If this sounds like you, youve probably heard about probiotics and their effectiveness again these issues.
Many people wonder what does probiotics do? Well, probiotics are potent supplements that aid the gut-healing process. However, gut health can be confusing, and you might not even know if youre fixing the problem. Even professionals confirm that it is hard to tell if probiotics are making a difference. With that said, some signs may tell you that your probiotics are working. So, if youve noticed any of the following improvements, its likely your probiotics have done the trick.
How Effective Are Probiotics
Researchers are currently unsure how effective probiotic supplements are for treating conditions. Theres constant research on the topic. While many research studies have had positive results on the impact of probiotic supplements, more research is still needed.
Its also important to keep in mind that unlike medications, dietary supplements do not need to be approved by the FDA. This means that manufacturers can sell supplements simply with claims of safety and effectiveness.
Always talk with your healthcare provider before taking a supplement or giving one to your child. Supplements might interfere with medicines you may be taking. If you are pregnant or breast feeding, check with your provider before taking any supplement.
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Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth
The small and large intestines usually contain different types of bacteria. SIBO occurs when bacteria from the large intestine start growing in the small intestine.
The large intestine predominantly contains anaerobic bacteria, which do not require oxygen and live by fermenting indigestible carbohydrates from plant-based foods as they pass through the gut.
Symptoms of SIBO are similar to those of IBS, including gas, bloating, and diarrhea. SIBO can also cause brain fogginess and short-term memory problems.
Not everyone with IBS has SIBO, but the overgrowth is more common in people with IBS. SIBO also frequently develops in older females.
Experts do not fully understand what causes the overgrowth, but it may result from reduced gut motility, which slows the passage of food through the gut. This can cause fermentable carbohydrates to remain in the small intestine for longer.
Results of a indicate a possible link between SIBO and probiotic supplementation in people with brain fogginess. The researchers found that symptoms improved when participants stopped taking probiotics and started taking antibiotics.
Anyone with SIBO symptoms should consult a doctor.
Do Probiotics Really Work
Do you feel like you could always use a little more energy? Feeling rundown, especially during the colder months when everyone is trapped inside? Lots of people swear by probiotic supplements as a way to support their immune system, but even with all the glowing testimonials, you still find yourself wondering: do probiotics actually work? Let’s take a closer look at probioticswell explore some of the common myths, and share with you what benefits, if any, probiotic supplements can offer.
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What Does The Gut Microbiome Do
The gut microbiome has a number of jobs, including:
extracting nutrients from food
digesting fiber and proteins from food
making vitamins B and K
shaping the immune system
protecting the body from pathogens
One key job the gut microbiome performs is to digest fiber from the food you eat, as your body cant digest fiber on its own.
Your microbes turn fiber into molecules, or metabolites, such as short-chain fatty acids .
These metabolites are important for a range of things, including gut health, blood sugar and blood fat control, appetite control, and the immune system.
Gut microbes can also digest protein and make B vitamins and vitamin K.
Researchers estimate that your gut microbiome can produce thousands of different metabolites.
Studies in mice have shown that animals lacking a microbiome dont develop a normal immune system, highlighting how crucial your gut microbes are.
They work together with your immune cells to protect you from infection and disease.
Your microbes also stop the growth of pathogens in your gut. They do this by competing for the space, maintaining the health of the intestinal barrier, and by producing molecules that kill invading pathogens.
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How Does Leaky Gut Syndrome Cause Leaky Heart
The gut lining should be impermeable, meaning nothing can pass through it into the rest of the body. However, due to regular exposure to toxins, infection and a poor diet, among other factors, barrier damage occurs.
The result is that things leak from the gut into the body where they arent supposed to be. When this occurs, undigested food particles, harmful bacteria and even toxins can leak out of the intestines and into the blood causing tissue damage.
The body will classify the particles that leak out as a foreign invader and mount an autoimmune response, in which it will generate autoantibodies against itself. This results in chronic, systemic inflammation in the body.
This inflammation is the root cause of leaky heart, or heart problems. The ongoing autoimmune-generated inflammation damages heart vessels, increases blood pressure and contributes to heart rhythm disorders like Atrial Fibrillation.
Essentially, the heart muscle is attacked by the immune system and as a result Atrial Fibrillation and cardiovascular condition results. We see this all the time in the office.
Leaky gut is associated with a high number of pathogenic bacteria and a low number of beneficial types. It is also associated with the presence of these harmful bacteria products in circulation, thereby increasing risk for pathogenic bacteria to build up in vessel walls and contribute to atherosclerosis, heart blockages and chronic heart failure.
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How Modern Life Impacts The Gut
Modern society has given us so many wonderful things, but healthy gut microbiomes is not one of them.
In Part 1, I discussed what the gut microbiome is, how we acquire it, and why its so important to overall health. In Part 2, we will look at the ways that our modern life can be harmful to the healthy balance of the microbiome. Many of the foods, chemicals, medications, lifestyle choices and behaviours that are commonplace in our society are damaging to healthy microflora populations. Sadly, research around the gut microbiome, human health and the impacts of modern life has only recently begun to catch up well after a lot of the damage has been done. Its not all bad news with the information from part 2 and the upcoming part 3, you will be empowered to make better decisions for your gut.
What disrupts the gut microbiome?
It simply cant be understated how much modern life has harmed the human gut microbiome. As a naturopath, I see my fair share of patients with blatant gut issues but more and more, I am seeing all manner of body systems and symptoms that are being impacted by a damaged gut microbiome.
Antibiotics and other medications
Other medications can wreak havoc on the gut microbiome, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and painkillers, the oral contraceptive pill, anti-diabetes drugs, and anti-psychotic drugs.
Other modern factors that disrupt the gut microbiome:
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Why Is Gut Health Important
The complex colony of organisms that live in the gut can affect virtually every aspect of health. Researchers are only beginning to understand the gut microbiomes far reaching effects.
When the body does not have the right balance of bacteria, certain organisms can grow out of control, impacting on fungal and other infections. For example, a person who takes antibiotics may experience changes in their gut bacteria that make them more vulnerable to yeast infections.
So far, research suggests that gut health
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What Happens To Your Body When You Start Taking Probiotics
Whether you know it or not, there are trillions of little critters living in your gutand consuming a solid amount of “good” bacteria to balance out the bad is key to your overall health. But what happens to your body when you start taking probiotics? The short answer is: a lot. These living microscopic organisms can improve digestion, keep your immune system in tip-top shape, control inflammation, help breakdown and absorb certain medications, and even positively affect your mood. But we’ll get into all the nitty-gritty details below.
If you’re not getting enough probiotics in your own diet from fermented foods such as kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, yogurt, tempeh, and kombucha, then taking a supplement is a super easy and effective way to stay healthy. Dr. Josh Axe, a clinical nutritionist, founder of Ancient Nutrition, and author of Ancient Remedies, recommends taking probiotic capsules on an empty stomach, either when you first wake up or right before bed , which will allow them to work faster while minimizing any potentially negative side effects.
Dr. Axe says that some of the particular groups who may benefit from taking probiotics are those with GI or nutrient absorption issues or poor blood sugar management. But the truth is, almost anyone can benefit from probiotics.
Sign 3 Ease Of Digestive Troubles
Perhaps the strongest evidence for probiotics is in treating diarrhea caused by aviral infection or from taking antibiotics.Probiotics restore the natural balance of bacteria, which is disrupted during aninfection or when taking antibiotics.Additionally, researchers found that probiotics also help constipation . Studies from Kings College in London show that probiotics increased the number of weekly bowel movements by 1.3, and helped soften stools, making them easier to pass .Therefore, if you see an improvement in diarrhea or constipation symptoms afterstarting probiotics it can be the most obvious sign that the supplements areWorking.
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How Long Do Side Effects From Probiotics Last
How you feeland how long you feel that wayreally comes down to the current state of your gut health and how your body processes the different probiotic strains. According to Shah, everyone metabolizes probiotics differently, so there’s really no definitive time frame for everyone.
As a general rule, initial unpleasant side effects typically go away within the first two weeks, when your gut microbiome starts to reach its new state of balance. Many people start experiencing gut support benefits as soon as two days after taking probiotics, but it really depends on how imbalanced your gut is to start and which strains you’re taking.*
If you don’t see unpleasant side effects start to diminish in the first couple of weeks, it’s a good idea to check in with your doctor and make sure there isn’t something else going on underneath the surface. For example, if you have small intestinal bacterial overgrowth or irritable bowel syndrome , the side effects may be more intense and long-lasting.
As for the fringe benefitslike less bloating and more regular eliminationthose should stick around for the long haul.*
Beneficial Harmful And Opportunistic Bacteria
Typical intestinal bacteria are classified according to their actions into three types.
Good bacteria have health maintenance and anti-aging effects such as aiding digestion and absorption, and stimulating immunity.
Representative examples are bifidobacteria and lactic acid bacteria.
In contrast, bad bacteria have adverse effects on the body. Representative examples include Clostridium perfringens, Staphylococcus, and Escherichia coli . They inhibit health by triggering disease and promoting aging.Opportunistic bacteria cause no trouble when you are healthy, but have adverse effects upon the intestines when the body is weak. Representative examples include Bacteroidetes, E. coli , and Streptococcus.
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Can Probiotics Cause Diarrhea
If you regularly suffer with diarrhea issues then you will no doubt have searched out various avenues to help solve the problem.
There are many digestive system disorders which can affect a person, and if you suffer from IBS, one of the most common conditions of them all, you may swing between constipation and diarrhoea on a regular basis.
Whatever your reason for suffering from regular diarrhoea bouts, there is a certain amount of evidence to suggest that taking probiotics, or by upping the amount of probiotic content in your diet, could help solve the problem.
A study published by the NCBI in 2016 showed that probiotics may help with infectious diarrhoea, and other studies have shown a correlation between antibiotic-related diarrhoea, being reduced by taking probiotics.
Of course, probiotics remains a mysterious subject for many researchers, as whilst a lot of evidence suggests benefits, there is still quite a lot which suggests less benefit than you might think.
It completely depends on the person much of the time, the type of probiotic strain being taken, and how it is taken.
In addition to this, there is little in the way of evidence to suggest any side effects, but not enough evidence to suggest there arent any.
More research is needed, and this is currently ongoing.
For now however, you might be wondering about probiotics for diarrhoea, and whether they could help you.
Extra About Probiotics Do Probiotics Give You Energy
Probiotics are useful micro organism that stay inside your intestines. They play an enormous number of vital roles in lots of bodily processes. They assist with digesting meals, absorbing vitamins, decreasing irritation, producing hormones, and rather more. Theyre additionally vital for vitality manufacturing, immune perform, wholesome cleansing, and correct digestion.
You can get your probiotic micro organism from dietary supplements or meals. Common probiotic meals embody sauerkraut, probiotic yogurt, and kefir, however there are various extra.
Lets have a look at the six hottest well being advantages of probiotics and the proof for every.
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Decreased Abdominal Pain And Discomfort
While it might seem like general knowledge, it turns out that a decrease in overall gastrointestinal symptoms is one of the easiest ways to tell if your probiotic is working. “Decreasing the stretch imposed on the small bowel and colon, is typically caused by ‘bad’ bacteria, can lead to decreased pain and discomfort in the abdominal region,” , MD, a gastroenterologist in North Carolina, tells POPSUGAR.
The Bottom Line On Probiotic Drinks
Remember that too much of a good thing isn’t always better. While probiotics can be beneficial to your health, if you’re eating multiple foods and beverages that contain probiotics along with supplements, you can potentially throw off the balance of bacteria in your intestines, says Palinski-Wade. If you choose to supplement your diet with probiotics, it’s best to reach for food first and know how much you are consuming. If you want to consider probiotic supplements, speak with your dietitian or physician about what dosage is appropriate for you.
And if you’re already getting enough of the good bacteria, there’s no need to add a probiotic drink to the mix. “Don’t be obsessed about probiotics or think they can turn an unhealthy diet into a healthful one,” says Newgent. “Often if you’re focusing on eating a nutrient-rich, plant-focused, whole foodbased diet, you’ll probably be getting everything you need for good gut health,” she adds.
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How To Ensure The Probiotic Will Work
To ensure your probiotic is working, make sure to follow the recommended use instructions on the packaging. Depending on the delivery mechanism, the method of taking your probiotic may differ. For example, some probiotics may need to be dissolved in a liquid, whereas others may need to be taken on an empty stomach.
Certain medications such as antibiotics can have a negative impact on the good bacteria in your gut and in your probiotic supplement, so probiotics are best taken away from other medications.
Check the product label for storage instructions to make sure your probiotic is stored properly. Improper storage can make your probiotic less likely to work.
Lastly, check the expiration date to make sure that the probiotic supplement has not expired.
Should I Try Probiotics
If you are interested in adding probiotics to your diet, its worth a conversation with your healthcare provider. Many providers may suggest giving them a try to see if they help with your general health. It is important to remember that not all probiotics behave the same way and have the same effects. Each has their own individual benefits. They generally dont cause harm. One easy way to start can be by simply introducing probiotic-rich foods into your diet, like yogurt.
Before you start any supplements, make sure you talk to your healthcare provider. Your provider may be able to point you in the right direction, helping you figure out the best probiotic to take, how much to take and when to take it. A conversation is always worth the time when it concerns your health.
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