Probiotics or Prebiotics: What you should know
Probiotics has become one of the most discussed term in recent years. This post tells you all you need to know about probiotics and prebiotics. We also answer frequently asked questions on probiotics.
To start with, Probiotics are life micro organisms, bacteria that can help promote mental and physical health
Prebiotics are like fertilizers and nutrients that helps healthy micro organisms, bacteria to grow.
It is important to have a balance of both in our daily diet. We don’t need to eat them at the same time.
Prebiotics are fruits e.g apple, vegetable and fats.
Probiotics are good bacteria that live in our intestine. Our stomach contains more than 10 trillion microorganisms.
These probiotics are capable of improving our health, helping digestion and boosting our immune system.
Gut flora is the universe that houses probiotics. This gut flora is developed from birth. Babies delivered vaginally are covered in a film of microbes as they pass through the birth canal. Included in the film are bacteria that help babies digest their first meal. Babies delivered by cesarean section are colonized mainly by skin microbes which is a very different set of species.
The gut flora is kept healthy and rich through exclusive breastfeeding. This universe can be distorted when we take antibiotics or when we have unhealthy eating habits.
These antibiotics cause the intestines to have a higher balance of bad bacteria that are not helpful to the immune system leaving us prone to many diseases.
These harmful biotics have the potential to keep multiplying and take over the intestine. In order to restore this balance there is a need to ingest probiotics.
Probiotics can be ingested either from foods or from supplements.
The main benefits of probiotics are that they
- Strengthens the immune system by increasing the production of defence cells.
- Prevents obesity by maintain a healthy body weight.
- Improve digestion
- Fight constipation and heart burn.
- Stops the rapid growth of bad bacteria in the gut.
- Prevents intestinal disease.
The more diverse the Probiotic supplement, the more effective. Probiotics supplement that contain various Probiotic are generally more efficient.
Probiotics should be taken before meal or after meal. So that the food helps the Probiotic survive the gastric acid in the stomach and arrive in the intestine where it will multiply.
Prebiotics are essential for the growth of probiotics. These prebiotics are found in fibre, fruits such as apple, vegetable and in fats.
Everyone needs a probiotics to promote good gut health. If you have had Gastrointestinal issues in the past or if you have taken antibiotics in the past. It is recommended that you take a Probiotic supplement.
Children generally Love yogurt making it an easy way to add probiotics to their diet.
Research shows that if people have more diversified gut, more strains of different bacteria they tend to have less depression, they tend to have less anxiety, they tend to do better over all mentally
What is better for your stomach, yogurt or probiotic supplement?
In the simplest form, Bacteria present in the stomach can be grouped into good and bad. Probiotics are an example of the Good bacteria.
Yogurt is a rich source of Probiotic to the body and since kids love it, it’s a good way to provide the probiotic they need. However at the best a serving of yougurt contains about 100 million Probiotic bacteria. Yogurt also contains sugar which unfortunately feeds the bad bacteria and help them grow.
For a healthy growth, one needs about 10 to 15billion Probiotic bacteria. Taking more yogurt to meet this number also increases the amount of sugar for the bad bacteria to grow.
Hence a Good Probiotic supplement rich in Probiotic and has little or no sugar will do better than taking yogurt.
How safe is it to take Probiotics and Vitamins?
In the Field of Medical Research, There is no known contradiction between Probiotics and Vitamins. Having Said that it is safe to take adequate and appropriate vitamins or probiotics for your age and needs.
Probiotics have been shown to help crowd out microorganisms that makes you sick and explains why they have shown to be most useful in fighting infectious diarrhea.
Some probiotic strains can’t survive the acidity of your gut. So if you’re taking a supplement, make sure it’s coated; the outer shell will help it reach your intestines intact. If you can find only an uncoated version, take it with food to help protect it from the aggressive environment