Can You Overdose On Probiotics
Probiotic-rich foods and supplements are generally considered safe. Your body is already filled with trillions of diverse bacteria, so overdosing is rare assuming that your immune system is healthy and functioning as normal.8
That said, you can always have too much of a good thing. Taking too many probiotics can create an unstable intestinal environment, which may result in many of the gastrointestinal side effects mentioned above, including diarrhea, abdominal pain, gas, bloating, and nausea.12
If you accidentally overdose on probiotics you should not be concerned as your gut microbiome will quickly reach a new equilibrium after you stop taking probiotics. An effective probiotic dose is 10 billion CFUs. Stick to a daily dose around 10 billion CFUs and only increase if needed such as when youre taking a course of antibiotics or have an underlying digestive issue.
Probiotics For Gas And Bloating
If you suffer from painful gas or bloating, you might be able to alleviate your symptoms by taking probiotic supplements. One common cause of this ailment is having an overgrowth of harmful bacteria in your digestive tract. Probiotics add beneficial bacteria to your digestive tract, which work in harmony with your body, rather than against it.
More than 30 percent of people report experiencing bloating regularly, 10-15% have Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and at least 40% of people worldwide experience some form of FGID or Functional Gastrointestinal Disorder.
While developing small amounts of gas is quite normal, and everyone experiences it, it can be worse and more persistent for people suffering from GI disorders. Its the same with bloating: for some people, its mild and merely a nuisance, but for others, it is painful and interferes with daily life. While scientists know what causes gas, there is no conclusion about what truly causes bloating and no pharmaceutical cure. Frequent and ongoing gas and bloat is often a sign that something is out of balance with your gut health.
Recent research has pointed more and more to imbalances in the gut microbiome as the culprit of many gastrointestinal issues.
The balance between healthy bacteria and harmful bacteria in your digestive tract is all-important. When the microbiome is balanced and the number of beneficial bacteria outweighs the number of bad bacteria, the digestive system will function properly.
Can You Stop Farting
Fruit, vegetables and pulses can cause gas, but eating several portions of these a day is much more important than eliminating wind. If you dont already eat fibrous foods, increasing the amount you eat too quickly might make you uncomfortable. Add fibre to your diet slowly to stop adverse effects.
Staying hydrated reduces the risk of constipation, which can cause excess gas. If a stool remains in your gut, it will continue to ferment, producing extra gas that can smell particularly foul. Try to have a drink with every meal and keep hydrated throughout the day. The NHS also recommends drinking peppermint tea to relieve gas and bloating.
Fizzy drinks contain gas, and if you drink a lot of them youll probably burp and fart more than if you dont. The same goes for chewing gum or guzzling down a bowl of soup or cereal with a spoon. If you ingest air, it has to go somewhere.
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How To Choose The Right Probiotic
When looking for probiotic products, look for a supplement with the following features
Multispecies and multistrain probiotic: The product should contain different bacterial species and multiple strains of bacteria.
Differentiated products tailored to your needs: Different digestive issues warrant different probiotic strains. Therefore, for optimal benefits, try to seek out a probiotic that is tailored to the specific health outcomes you are trying to achieve.
Clinical studies: The probiotic and its claims should be backed by clinical studies using the final product. This will ensure that you are buying a product whose effects have been studied and proven.
Human strains: Only human bacterial strains can colonize your gut . Other bacteria, such as bacteria found in fermented foods such as yogurt and in soil-based probiotics, cannot colonize the gut and usually pass through your body within a few days. For lasting positive effects, you want to make sure that you have human strains that can colonize.
Free of animal proteins, allergens and fillers: It is recommended to choose a probiotic that is free of dairy and other animal proteins, gluten, soy and yeast to ensure you are taking a clean product.
Delivery mechanism: When you ingest your probiotic, the probiotic travels through the harsh, very acidic environment of the stomach before it reaches the small and large intestine.
How Do Lifestyle Factors Come Into Play
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As we mentioned earlier, no supplement or vitamin will ever serve as a one-pill wonder or magical cure-all . Therefore, it’s fortuitous to be realistic regarding other factors that can come into play and could possibly impact the efficacy of a probiotic.
“Stress, medications, travel, and a poor diet can all throw your microbiome off balance, which can lead to undesirable symptoms like digestive distress, gas, and bloating,” Heim tells us. And especially in terms of diet, some foods can cause some issues. For instance, vegetables can be problematic in addition to certain types of sugars.
“A diet that’s low in FODMAP , monosaccharides , and sugar alcohols , such as sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, and maltitol) may help keep bloating at bay,” Lin tells us. “Foods are composed of short-chain carbohydrates, which are known to feed the beneficial bacteria in the gut, which essentially is like throwing a party in the colon, creating gas, drawing in water, and more. For a person dealing with bloating, this may increase their symptoms.”
That being said, one lifestyle factor that can enhance your probiotic and naturally lessens bloating is exercise, as it has been shown to increase the motility of the gut and keep gas from sticking around too long in the digestive tract.
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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.
When Taken In Excess Probiotics Can Be Dangerous
People at higher risk for adverse effects, like infection, of taking too many probiotics are those with serious illnesses or weakened immune systems, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.
If you fall into either of those categories, it’s important to consult your doctor before taking probiotics.
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Weight Management Probiotics More Effective With Additional Natural Ingredients
There are many people who consume probiotic drinks for gut health and to have an improved sense of well-being. But in order to positively influence weight management long-term, one needs to consider the probiotic supplements formulated with additional natural ingredients to increase effectiveness.The more natural the formula, the healthier it is. Turmeric is a great example of an extra component, and a popular choice right now in teas. Some of the best products also use Piperine Extract to enhance the efficiency of the ingredients.
The current craze for turmeric isnt a new fad. Research has shown that its effect on weight management and metabolism when used responsibly. These studies refer to bioavailable curcumin, which is the scientific term for an active ingredient in turmeric. Test subjects on a 30 day trial saw reductions in waistlines, hip circumference and BMI. This clearly highlights the efficacy of turmeric in probiotics for belly fat reduction.
A Better Way To Beat The Bloat
If you’re symptoms persist, continuing to take probiotics is only going to make you more frustrated.
And there’s a good reason for this.
If you’re pumping billions of beneficial bacteria into an unhealthy digestive system their survival rate will be so low they won’t have an effect. You’re just throwing your money away.
A better strategy is to clean up the gut before introducing new probiotic bacteria.
And a good place to start creating a balanced gut microbiome that ensures the beneficial bacteria survive and thrive is to introduce prebiotic fiber.
Prebiotic fibers feed the friendly bacteria in your gut and help create an environment that enables them to multiply and thrive an displace the bad bacteria.
Without prebiotics, you’re wasting money pumping probiotics into a gut environment where they have limited chance of surviving.
Foods rich in prebiotic fibers include:
- Jerusalem artichoke
One of the richest sources of prebiotics is kiwi fruit.
What’s more, kiwifruit is rich in phenolics that help suppress the growth of bad bacteria and digestive enzymes that break down and digest food.
The fruit is also a great source of soluble fiber that keep you’re bowel movements regular.
Unfortunately, most of the fruits therapeutic properties are contained in the fuzzy skin, which most people throw away – meaning they miss out on many of the digestive health benefits.
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The Benefits Of Probiotics
There is a lot of research happening in the world of probiotics, but even so, researchers dont fully understand all of the health benefits of having healthy gut flora. The body and the symbiotic relationship that it has with the microorganisms that call it home are complicated, but there is evidence that probiotics may help alleviate or prevent several health conditions as well as boost our overall health.
Why Does Taking A Probiotic Give Me Gas
It currently not known why people experience gas and bloating when taking probiotic supplements. However, research shows that these effects do subside after a few weeks of use.
To reduce the effects and risk of this happening when first taking probiotics, it may be easier to start on a lower dose if at all possible.
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When Should You Take A Probiotic For Bloating
Probiotics work best when accompanied by healthy diet and lifestyle choices, but generally, the best time of day to take probiotics is in the morning with your breakfast.
However, there is one exception if you are considering taking a probiotic for supporting regularity and choose to take Optibac Probiotics Bifido & Fibre you may wish to take this in the evening, rather than with breakfast. The reason why some people like to take it before bed is due to the 4 grams of prebiotic fibres contained within each sachet. These prebiotic fructooligosaccharides fibres may cause some initial gas and bloating for a few sensitive individuals. These side effects should subside within 48-72 hours in most people, but this may take longer in people who have more severe dysbiosis, or if they have never taken a prebiotic before.
Gut Health And Bloating
The gut is made up of trillions of live organisms, collectively known as the microbiome. This ecosystem of bacteria plays a huge role in keeping us healthy and happy. You can learn more about these fascinating bacteria by reading: The microbiome – all you need to know. If youve done some reading about the gut, you might also have heard about probiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms that have co-evolved alongside humans. They have been shown in research to help with gut related issues such as bloating1, anxiety2, and immune health3.
To learn more on how probiotics may help with other aspects of health, including immune health, gut health, women’s health, children’s health and during pregnancy head over to our article Benefits of probiotics.
Bacteria are no longer the enemy. Research shows that by restoring balance in your microbiome with probiotics, you may be one step closer to getting to the root cause of your bloating and other related symptoms, such as gas and constipation.
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Taking Excess Probiotics Can Cause Mild Discomfort
Taking more than a usual dose 1 to 10 billion colony forming units of probiotics doesn’t necessarily mean better results and, instead, might provoke some mildly uncomfortable side effects.
“Some research has shown that using more bacteria may, in fact, counteract . If the bacteria get to the food before us, they can turn it into gas,” says Farhadi. On top of excess gas, you might experience bloating or a generally upset stomach. Diarrhea can also occur, but that’s about as bad as it gets.
Side effects, most commonly gas, may also occur when someone first starts taking probiotics, as their gut may experience some changes in bacteria levels. Usually, though, if someone is taking an average dose, these side effects should wear off soon, once the body adjusts.
Probiotic Strains To Help Alleviate Bloating
For best results, choose probiotics that are researched and shown to help alleviate digestive issues.
The two most widely studied bacteria are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.
Studies reveal these two bacterial strains helped improve symptoms of bloating in patients with functional bowel disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome , constipation and diarrhea as well supporting the immune system.
Here’s a list of the most widely researched probiotics strains that can help alleviate bloating.
- Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM
- Bacillus Coagulans12
- Saccharomyces cerevisiae CNCM I-385613
No matter how beneficial these strains are, current research has produced mixed results and is not conclusive.
Choosing a probiotic supplement containing these strains is certainly a good way of combating belly bloat.
But its not the only way to beat the bloat
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Are There Any Risks Related To Probiotics
Probiotics are generally considered safe. However, there are some risks linked to the supplements. These risks are increased if you have a medical condition that weakens your immune system, have recently had surgery or have other serious medical conditions.
Unlikely, but possible, risks can include:
- Developing an infection.
- Developing a resistance to antibiotics.
- Developing harmful byproducts from the probiotic supplement.
More Regular Bowel Movements
An imbalance in the composition of good bacteria in your intestine can contribute to irregular bowel movements. For example, frequent diarrhea can be a sign of pathogenic bacteria present in your intestines. A high-quality probiotic will help bring more good bacteria into your gut so that they crowd out the bad bacteria.
Constipation, on the other hand, can be due to low mucus production or low motility of your intestinal muscles. Certain probiotic bacterial strains are known to increase mucus production, which can regulate constipation.
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How Many Probiotics Should I Take A Day
I figured the more good bacteria in my gut, the better, which is why I went from never taking probiotics to downing 30 billion CFUs a day. However, the National Institutes of Health notes that many doses range from one billion to 10 billion CFUs for adults.
“There is no exact amount of probiotics a person should take a day, as every person’s gut is different,” Dr. Sonpal said. “However, it is advised to avoid taking more than 10 to 20 billion colony forming units as that is usually the maximum amount a person can handle per day.”
He added that, if you eat a diet full of probiotic-rich foods like yogurt, fermented vegetables, or kombucha, it may be beneficial to lower the number of probiotics you take in supplement form. There’s one notable exception. “Antibiotics harm the good bacteria in our gut as well as the bad bacteria causing infection,” Dr. Sonpal said. “So upping the number of probiotics you take per day will likely help maintain a balanced gut when on antibiotics.”
For regular use, it can take about one to two weeks to get acclimated to a lower dose of probiotics, Dr. Sonpal explained – at that point, you can decide whether or not to move up. “If you feel improvement in your stomach, then you can try to take a higher dosage,” he said. “However, if you feel bloated, nauseous, gassy, or are having diarrhea, then you likely need to decrease the number of colony forming units you take per day.”
When Should I Talk To A Doctor
If you have consistent stomach pain, talk to your doctor about it. “Probiotics can definitely help ease symptoms of stomach issues like diarrhea and cramping,” Dr. Sonpal told POPSUGAR. “However, probiotic supplements should not replace going to a medical professional for intense abdominal pain or daily stomach problems. If you feel your daily life is being negatively affected by your stomach, it is advised to make an appointment with a gastroenterologist for a diagnosis and treatment plan.”
I’m now taking five billion CFUs of probiotics a day, which helped my stomach feel much better after only a week. This change drastically improved my quality of life, as I was able to enjoy meals and daily activities again. If you think you’re taking too high of a dose of probiotics, stop and talk to your doctor. You don’t have to live with dreadful stomach pain!
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Peanut Butter And Peanut Intolerance
You may also experience gas and bloating after consuming peanut butter if you have a food intolerance, specifically, peanut intolerance.
Studies show that over 20% of the population in industrialized nations has a food intolerance.
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, you have food intolerance or sensitivity if you have a hard time digesting certain foods.
Normally, food intolerance reactions are linked to the amount of food you eat and may occur if you exceed a certain limit. This threshold level, however, may differ from person to person.
Unlike a food allergy, food intolerance does not involve your immune system and result in milder digestive issues.
Still, it can be hard to differentiate food intolerance from food allergy.
Common symptoms of food intolerance include:
- The buildup of intestinal gas
- Headache or migraine
You may develop symptoms of food intolerance immediately, or after 12 to 24 hours.
If you mainly feel gassy right after eating peanuts or peanut butter, chances are, you have a peanut intolerance rather than a peanut allergy.
Depending on the severity of your peanut intolerance, you might still be able to consume some peanut butter occasionally without issues.
Still, its best to consult with a medical professional to rule out other potential digestive conditions.