Keep Your Microbiome Balanced with Probiotics
Did you know your body is more than just a single organism?
In fact, it’s actually somewhat of a community. A very complex community…made up of trillions of microorganisms.
These microorganisms make up what’s called your microbiome. And keeping your microbiome balanced is critical to maintaining good health.
Good vs. Bad Bacteria
Bacteria in general tend to have a bad name. Usually, if you’re hearing about bacteria it’s within the context of making you or someone else sick.
But when it comes to your health, there are actually two broad categories of bacteria: “bad” bacteria (the kind that make you sick) and “good” bacteria (the kind that help to keep you healthy).
It turns out that good bacteria perform many useful and necessary functions within your body. In particular they:
- Help your body to digest food.
- Counteract the effects of bad bacteria.
- Prevent bad bacteria from entering your bloodstream.
- Synthesize vitamins.
- Absorb nutrients.
To stay healthy, your body’s microbiome must keep your good and bad bacteria in balance. If good bacteria become depleted, your health can be negatively impacted in a number of ways. When this occurs, probiotics can be supplemented to restore good bacteria to healthy levels.
What Are Probiotics?
The word “probiotic” generally refers to the good bacteria in your body’s microbiome.
Having said that, nowadays most people associate the word “probiotic” with food and supplements that can maintain or restore your microbiome’s supply of good bacteria.
Probiotics typically contain a variety of bacteria, often belonging to the groups Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Oftentimes the quality of a probiotic supplement will be judged by the diversity of the good bacteria contained within it.
Why Do You Need Probiotics?
Your body is designed to work best when good and bad bacteria stay in balance. However, this balance can be easily disrupted. Two common ways this equilibrium is lost include:
- Exposure to bad bacteria (to the point where the bad bacteria overwhelms your body’s defenses).
- Loss of good bacteria, usually due to taking antibiotics.
Regardless of how it happens, imbalances between good and bad bacteria in your microbiome can result in a number of problems including: bloating, diarrhea, gas, abdominal pain, nausea, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, food intolerances, trouble absorbing nutrients, difficulty regulating blood sugar, a sluggish metabolism, chronic inflammation (with its associated health conditions), eczema and other skin rashes, urinary tract and vaginal infections, a hampered immune response, and mood issues (like depression and anxiety).
The good news is that probiotics can restore the balance in your body’s microbiome by replenishing your good bacteria.
What Are Good Sources of Probiotics?
One easy way to add probiotics to your system is through your food. In particular, fermented foods are a good dietary source of probiotics. Good examples include yogurt, pickles, sauerkraut, and fermented drinks like kombucha and kefir.
Another option is to take a probiotic supplement. These supplements are typically taken as an oral capsule.
One thing to keep in mind is that quality is important when it comes to probiotics. A probiotic of poor quality will do you no good and will be a waste of money.
At Renew Youth, we can help you to decide if adding a probiotic supplement into your regimen makes sense for you.
Find Out More
Like balanced hormones, we know a balanced microbiome is also important for continued good health.
To learn more, call us at 800-859-7511 or use our contact form to set up your free 30-minute consultation.