As you age, you begin to run into various health issues and challenges. Some of them are serious, and others are minor but obnoxious. Luckily, we live in the 21st century, and the advances of modern medicine have given us solutions to many of these issues. The problem is, most of the information available on these various supplements tend to be confusing, complicated, and full of medical jargon.
This is why we took the time to create this beginner guide to one of the most popular over the counter solutions available today, probiotics. Probiotics have been known to produce excellent results, improve your quality of life, and help you become an overall healthier person. That begin said, we understand the need for extensive research on any product before you commit to integrating it into your daily routine.
What Are Probiotics?
First off, let’s explain, in simple terms, what exactly probiotics are. They are a type of bacteria that can be found in your gut. Usually, bacteria sounds bad and is something you would think you should avoid. However, having bacteria in your body is unavoidable. The key is to have the right balance of good bacteria to bad bacteria. Probiotics can provide good bacteria that keep you healthy and aid in things like weight loss and improved digestion.
Where Do Bad Bacteria Come From?
If Probiotics are delivering good bacteria, then where do all the bad bacteria originate from? It comes from various places and can damage your body if one unbalanced. One main and preventable source of bad bacteria is a poor diet that is high in saturated and processed fats. Bad bacteria can also be produced by illness and the consumption of various antibiotics over time. Like we said, bad bacteria as a whole are unavoidable. However, it can be managed and kept in place by diet, exercise, and the introduction of a probiotic supplement into your daily routine.
The Top 3 Strains
As you begin to research probiotics, you will learn about the various types of strains they include. These strains have long, hard to pronounce names. Even if you can pronounce them, how are you supposed to know if they are what you need? To make it simple, when considering a probiotic supplement, make sure it has Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus, and Saccharomyces. Thos are the strains that have been known to produce the best results.
What Does CFU Stand For?
The deeper you get into the world of probiotics, the more you will see the acronym CFU. It stands for Colony Forming Units. Basically, it measures how potent that specific probiotic is. Products range greatly between 2 Billion and 100 Billion. However, there is no proof that anything over 10 Billion CFU adds any extra potency. Simply put, a product that claims to have 20 Billion CFU may be correct but will deliver the same effectiveness as the one that has 10 billion.
Can It Trigger My Allergies?
Yes, it can, depending on the product and ingredients. Just like other products, you want to make sure the solution you choose is free from allergens and GMOs such as wheat, gluten, peanuts, shellfish, dairy, and anything else you may be allergic too. The safest way to avoid any allergic reactions is to use a product like Bowtrol that is fully transparent about the formula they use. Their official product page clearly states they do not use any of the above mentioned allergens.
Can It Help With My Digestive Issues?
One of the immediate benefits you will see after starting a probiotic is a significant improvement in your digestive system and the disappearance of issues that have plagued you. This is due to its ability to add good bacteria to your gut to counteract the harmful bacteria that builds up due to illness, consumption of antibiotics, and poor diet. A properly balanced gut is crucial to your long term health. If ignored, it can have dire consequences such as mental health problems and obesity.
Can Bad Bacteria Impact My Weight?
Yes, it can and often times does. If the harmful bacteria in your gut are not kept in check, it can influence your food choices and appetite. This can lead to a poor diet, which in turn leads to even more bad bacteria. This is a vicious cycle that needs to be stopped. The good bacteria produced by probiotics can balance your gut and help you make better food and diet choices. Taking it a step further, probiotics have been known to help you exercise better as well. The good bacteria help your body recover quicker from a workout and perform at a higher level the next time you hit the gym.
What Foods Can I Find Probiotics In?
At this point, you might be ready to jump on the train. Good for you! In addition, to a supplement, there are several foods you can find probiotics. The most popular one being yogurt. Not only is it made from milk that has been fermented by friendly bacteria, but it has also been known to aid in bone health and decrease high blood pressure. Additional foods include sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi, buttermilk, and mozzarella, gouda, cheddar, and cottage cheese.
Probiotics may seem complicated, but they are actually quite simple when you break them down. The good bacteria they provide are essential in maintaining your long term health. It has been proven to offer numerous benefits in various areas of your life. You owe it to yourself to begin taking a daily probiotic and see what types of benefits it can have for you.