Probiotics are microorganisms found in intestines, vagina, and the digestive tract. There are more than 400 species of them, including acidophilus and lactobacillus, that live in the body.

Probiotics are colloquially known as good bacteria because they play a protective role in the body. They promote health by making the immune system stronger and through suppression of harmful bacteria. They participate in the production of vitamin K and boost the defences of the barrier around the digestive tract.

A number of factors - lifestyle choices, medicine, and diet - affect probiotics. For a healthy person, who takes a balanced diet and exercises, these effects are barely noticeable. But as we age, every factor begins to exert itself more forcefully and an imbalance is created. The imbalance lessens the ability of probiotics to protect us from diseases. Probiotic supplements and foods can be used to treat the imbalance.

Health Benefits of Probiotics

  • Diarrhea

A literature review of 185 studies published between 1980 and 2004 shows that use of lactobacillus reuteri and other microorganisms shortens the duration and lessens the severity of diarrhea. Another literature review of studies published between 1980 and 2004 vouches for the effectiveness of lactobacillus acidophilus in controlling the disease.

  • Diabetes

Oxidative stress, if left untreated, can lead to type 2 diabetes. Probiotics combat oxidative stress, according to a study conducted to found the relationship between blood glucose and probiotics doses. The researchers involved in the study observed a group of people who took 300 grams of probiotic yogurt containing lactobacillus acidophilus for six weeks. After this period the researchers found that blood glucose levels were reduced in the group.

  • Bowel disorders

Individuals diagnosed with functional bowel disorders, such as gastrointestinal symptoms, show fewer symptoms when treated with probiotics supplements for a few weeks.

Other health benefits of probiotics

  • Radiation therapy side effects
  • Vaginal yeast infections
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Lactose tolerance
  • Canker sores
  • Colitis with ulcers


Sources

Probiotics can be found in certain foods, such as yogurt. They are also available as supplements. It is smart to buy supplements from credible manufacturers.