Probiotics are defined as bacteria and yeasts that are alive and function symbiotically with other microorganisms to keep your body healthy and active. For a microbe to be considered probiotic, it needs to be alive when ingested, documented to have health benefits and consumed in levels that actually transfer these health benefits to the host.
- Though people commonly believe that bacteria cause ailments and infections, this isn’t true for all of them. It’s been well established that there are some species of probiotic bacteria that are actually beneficial for the body. They are especially important when it comes to the digestive system, where they do most of the heavy lifting.
- Our digestive tracts contain over 1000 kinds of intestinal flora, which help us break down what we eat and increase the absorption of nutrients. Probiotics are the helpful kind of bacteria that work effectively in helping you sustain a healthy gut. These beneficial bacteria stimulate the juices and enzymes that cause our digestive organs to function well.
- Multiple species of these beneficial microorganisms help with a number of different functions including the processing of fiber that collects in the colon, turning it into short chain fatty acids like butyrate and acetate. The wall of the intestines survives on these fatty acids and executes numerous metabolic functions.
- Probiotics also help maintain the population of good bacteria in the body, playing an active role in fighting and lowering bad bacteria, primarily by creating a hostile environment where pathogens cannot thrive. They also work synergistically with other beneficial microbes to crowd out harmful microorganisms that cause disease and infection.
- Maintaining a healthy balance of bacteria in the digestive system aids in the functional filtering of toxins and wastes, and helps cells better absorb necessary nutrients, which helps the body receive more nutrition from the food that passes through it. In addition to all this, probiotic bacteria also trigger immune responses from the body, leading to better immunity.
- There are many universal benefits of probiotics, which makes them important for everyone, with no age or gender limits to their consumption. In fact, probiotics even play a significant role in the health and wellness of pets and farm animals. The only thing you need to consider is the dosage and strain that is appropriate, based on factors like age, weight and, existing medical conditions.
Probiotic bacteria are believed to cure a wide range of health problems, ranging from constipation and diarrhea to preventing and fighting off a cold. Unfortunately, we’ve gotten so used to the idea of all bacteria being bad that somewhere along the way, we started working on getting rid of everything that we consider foreign to our system.
The trouble is a lot of those “unwanted house guests” who live in our gut and other parts of our bodies, are actually really good for us – they help our system run well and efficienty!