Gut health is a big topic in the social media world at the moment. And at the forefront are probiotics! Probiotics are live ‘friendly’ bacteria that populate our intestines and are linked to a wide range of health benefits.
Common sources of probiotic foods:
yoghurt, kefir, sauerkraut, tempeh, kimchi, kombucha, pickles, or anything fermented really!
The strength of our immune system
Did you know that 80% of our immune system is in our intestines? So looking after our gut health is key for an optimal immune system. Our society relies on antibiotics in times of illness – which not only kills off bad bacteria but the good as well. Consume probiotics daily to boost your immunity.
Protect your heart
There is some good evidence to suggest probiotics keep our heart healthy by helping to lower LDL “bad” cholesterol levels. Certain lactic acid producing bacteria in our gut have been linked to reducing cholesterol by breaking down bile (body fluid that helps digest fat) in our intestines.
Reduce symptoms in chronic bowel disorders
Probiotics not only improve the bowel health of the general population, such as reduced bloating and improved bowel motions but also promising research for more complex conditions. There is research to show the benefits of probiotics on chronic bowel conditions, such as probiotics Bifidobacterium & lactobacillus improving bowel symptoms in ulcerative colitis, and other research including supplementing with probiotic e-coli nissle was just as effective as drugs in maintaining remission in ulcerative colitis.
Improve mental health
In recent years there has been an increasing number of studies linking gut health to mood and mental health. The current consensus in research shows that taking probiotics may help improve symptoms of mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, stress and memory.
Many factors of an unhealthy lifestyle such as stress, smoking and poor diet can increase the number of bad bacteria in your gut. If you need some direction in improving the health of your gut, an accredited practising dietitian can assist you.