Pro-Biotics and Pre-Biotics

Very recently, scientists have discovered a very good and health promoting bacteria in our bodies. These bacteria are found in our gastrointestinal tract ( GI). This good bacterium helps to break down the food, improves immunity, absorbs nutrients and improves our moods as well. Before that, we only knew of bacteria as a negative thing. That is why we all use antibacterial soaps and other cleaning products.

Our bodies are made of both the good and bad bacteria. The GI tract is composed of over 500 strains of different bacteria. The balance of good and bad bacteria basically determines our health status.  When this balance is disturbed, there is a chance of getting the disease. We commonly use antibiotics to reduce the infections abut in the fact that is the fastest way in which we lose the good bacteria in our bodies. Other factors like poor sleep patterns, poor nutrition, and stress for longer periods of time can cause the good bacteria to die and hence an increase in the bad bacteria in the body.

Many foods and products have probiotics like yogurt, kefir, tempeh. You can also find them in many supplements as well that come in the form of tablets and capsules. These supplements are microorganisms that are actually found in our stomach. These supplements increase the good bacteria in our gut and reduce the conditions like diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome. It is advised to the patients to diarrhea to take supplements rather than antibiotics as it will increase the amount of good bacteria in the body. Research has also shown a decrease in the cases of diarrhea if supplements were given to the patient rather than antibiotics.

Taking probiotics has many other benefits besides shortening the duration of diarrhea. It provides an increase in the production of antibodies to certain vaccines. It helps in reducing infections particularly eczema.  More research needs to be done in this regard. But generally speaking, taking probiotics is considered safe for taking in severe conditions as well.

Prebiotics are carbohydrates that are nondigestible. They increase the production of good bacteria in our bodies. Prebiotics are found in beans, garlic, onions, bananas, and leeks and also a lot of baby formula milk.

Probiotics and prebiotics come in the forms of strains, and no two strains are alike. If you want to start taking a supplement, you should do research on what kind of strain your supplements have to offer. It is always better to consult your doctor or physician first as they know better what strains are good for you and what might not be effective for you. It is also better to consult a doctor because he can tell you if any of your present medications interfere with the supplements you will take. Probiotics are found in dairy products. So it is also good if you check your diet first and the go for taking any other supplement. Always use well known and established brands so that you get the purest things that you deserve.