This balance is easily upset from harmful substances – whether it’s an overload of antibiotics, viruses and accidental or temporary excesses of organic matter – and that’s when we need reinforcements: enter probiotics.
A plethora of conditions, from obesity to anxiety, appear to be linked to the microbes inside us. Ask most people to define microbiome, and a handful might say that it refers to a bacterial ecosystem that lives in a specific place. They may even mention the gut. To put it in layman’s terms, your microbiome is your body’s ecosystem of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria.
WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF PROBIOTICS?
1) Keep your digestion working the way it should
Probiotics will help in digestive issues, candida overgrowth (an imbalance of yeast in the microbiome) and leaky gut. (1)
2) Restore your gut health after taking antibiotics
When you treat an infection with antibiotics, many of your ‘good’ bacteria are killed off along with the bad bacteria. Taking probiotics afterwards will restore the balance and diversity of your gut health. (2)
3) Keep your immune system strong
Probiotics enhance immune function through supporting the regeneration of the intestinal lining, keeping bad bacteria from entering the blood stream, and therefore maintaining the overall health of the immune system. (3)
4) Uplift your mood
Often called the “second brain,” your microbiome has a direct impact on your brain chemistry. Probiotics can have a brain-altering effect through their innate mechanism to produce neurotransmitters such as serotonin, GABA, and acetyl-choline. A diet high in natural probiotics has been proven to improve symptoms of depression. (4)
JUST REMEMBER THIS
Supplements aren’t the only way to get a daily dose of probiotics. Here is a list of 6 probiotic foods that are super healthy:
- Kombucha (Available at Booster Deli & Café with delicious flavours from rosella, lime & ginger and butterfly pea flower in 200 ml bottles)
- Kefir (traditionally from dairy products but can be vegan as well)
- Apple cider vinegar
- Miso (fermented soybean paste)
- Fermented vegetables such as pickles or sauerkraut
- Yogurt, especially plain Greek yogurt
- Verna, Elizabeth C, and Susan Lucak. “Use of probiotics in gastrointestinal disorders: what to recommend?.” Therapeutic advances in gastroenterology vol. 3,5 (2010): 307-19. doi:10.1177/1756283X10373814
- Rodgers B, Kirley K, Mounsey A. PURLs: prescribing an antibiotic? Pair it with probiotics. J Fam Pract. 2013;62(3):148-150.
- Lambring CB, Siraj S, Patel K, Sankpal UT, Mathew S, Basha R. Impact of the Microbiome on the Immune System. Crit Rev Immunol. 2019;39(5):313-328. doi:10.1615/CritRevImmunol.2019033233
This article is a nutritional tip brought to you by Morgane Quinchon, Thanyapura’s Nutrition Manager, Registered Dietitian & Sports Nutrition Advisor.
Edited by Ashlyne Nair