7 Ways Probiotics Affect Your Health

Your gut is where digestion begins, it’s connected to your brain, and it’s at least 70% of your immune system. The bottom line — you can’t be healthy if your gut isn’t healthy. A diet free of refined sugar and artificial ingredients are part of the equation in promoting a healthy gut environment. Achieving a positive balance of bacteria is the other. Within your gut live colonies of friendly bacteria known as probiotics. When you have healthy, established colonies, it has positive effects on your health.

How Probiotics Affect Your Health

Now Super Enzymes,180 ... Buy New $21.33 (as of 10:10 EST - Details) You’ve probably heard a lot about how probiotics help digestion. But probiotics, the bacteria that lives in your gut, affect much more than digestion. In fact, they have far-reaching effects for your health, and there are probably many more benefits to these good bacteria that we have yet to discover. Here’s a quick snapshot of 7 ways probiotics affect your health.

1. Soothes IBS

Nature’s Bounty ... Best Price: null Buy New $19.00 ($0.08 / Count) (as of 11:15 EST - Details) Nothing’s worse than enjoying a delicious meal and suffering from bloating, gas, or abdominal pain. It turns out altered gut bacteria, or “microbiota,” contributes to several forms of IBS. [1] Probiotics corrects the balance of gut bacteria you need for proper digestion. A study of 1,793 IBS sufferers found those who regularly consumed probiotics experienced less pain and fewer IBS symptoms than those who didn’t supplement with the bacteria. [2] Bacteria like L. acidophilus and Bifidobacterium breve reduce the effects of digestive disorders like IBS, so make sure any probiotic you take contains these.

2. Encourages a Balanced Mood

Life Extension Super K... Best Price: null Buy New $18.24 ($10.36 / oz) (as of 02:00 EST - Details) The food-mood connection is very real, and you’ve probably experienced this on some occasions. If you’re not getting the right balance of vitamins, minerals, and protein, your mood suffers. One study found those who took probiotics responded better to a ‘sad mood’ and were able to stay more positive. [3] Another found those who ate yogurt with live cultures experienced less anxiety and stress than those who ate conventional yogurts that don’t have them. [4] When buying yogurt, make sure it states it contains live cultures; if it doesn’t, don’t waste your time.

3. Keeps your Brain Working Right

Hyperbiotics PRO-15 Pr... Best Price: null Buy New $24.94 (as of 11:35 EDT - Details) Your gastrointestinal tract and your brain are directly linked by the vagus nerve. When your gut isn’t working right, neither’s your brain. You need digestion to provide you essential fatty acids, B vitamins, and other minerals needed to keep your brain working right. Research does show probiotics could support focus, concentration, and even mental health, so be sure to incorporate this crucial supplement if you find you need help in these areas.

4. Diabetes

Lactobacillus probiotic bacteria convert starches and sugars into usable energy. Studies show this reduces the impact of sugars and starches on your blood glucose levels, liver, and reduces your risk for developing metabolic syndrome. [5]

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